a person is surprised of the overcharge that he is looking at

Store Overcharges and Checkout Scanners

Shoppers are entitled to the current advertised or sale price. How to spot overcharges and report them.

You are entitled to the lowest advertised or posted price

Grocery and retail store scanners have made shopping more convenient. They’ve become so common that we don’t give them much thought. We assume that a store scanner will charge us the current price, even for sale items. That’s true in most cases, but we need to remember that scanners are simply computers and as we all know, computers are only as accurate as the prices programmed into them. If a store forgets to program a sale price, customers will be overcharged. For this reason, it’s important to pay attention to the prices you’re charged at the checkout. Los Angeles County is strongly committed to accuracy in pricing and the fair and lawful treatment of consumers. The County registers and inspects scanners. Stores in the County that use scanners must post the sign below. This informs you of your right to be charged the lowest advertised or posted price in the store. It also tells you where to file a complaint. Sign at registers from L.A. County Weights and Measures

*This notice must be posted near store scanners in a way that’s easy for customers to see.

Smart shopping habits

You can spot overcharges and save money by following these shopping tips:

  • Pay attention to the cash register display to be sure you are charged the correct price.
  • Immediately point out overcharges to the cashier.
  • Check your receipt for overcharges or other errors before leaving the store. Report errors to the manager or customer service desk.
  • Ask about the store’s policy on overcharges. If you are overcharged, some stores will give you the item free or offer a discount.

If you’re overcharged

If you are charged more than the advertised, posted or quoted a price, report it to the sales clerk right away. If the sales clerk can’t help, speak to the manager. By law, you are entitled to the lowest advertised, posted or quoted price offered by the store. Stores must honor a posted price, even if the price has expired.

Report overcharges

If you are overcharged, contact the Los Angeles County Agricultural Commissioner/Weights and Measures.  They investigate overcharges.  You may contact them at (800) 665-2900 or at their website. County of Los Angeles Department of Consumer and Business Affairs. Last change: Mar. 17, 2015

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