INDIANAPOLIS — Customers are taking to social media with concerns after the news of a locally-owned women’s fashion shop announcement that it is closing its doors after 13 years.
On Tuesday, Brook Magdzinski wrote an email to customers announcing that Dottie Couture would close its shop near The Fashion Mall at Keystone. The announcement also stated that online sales would stop as of 7 p.m. Friday.
However, when customers, and CBS4, went to the website, they were not able to find any items to purchase from the soon-to-be-closed store.
Adding to the confusion, customers told CBS4 that the store recently conducted a buy one get one $50 gift card promotion recently, leaving them with hundreds of dollars in unspent store credit.
CBS4 received several calls and emails about the situation, trying to figure out what they should do about their unspent credit.
In 2019, the Consumer Federation of America published a blog post about gift card risks and protections. In his post, Stephen Dunmore, a Consumer Specialist Co-Op for the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office, provided some steps to try if you find yourself with a gift card for a closed business.
The first step that Dunmore suggested was contacting the business to ask for a refund. If that doesn’t work, he suggests asking your credit card or debit card provider to reverse the charge.
If the business closed due to filing for bankruptcy, Dunmore said you can file a proof of claim with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to be added to the list of creditors who are owned money. This does not guarantee a refund, however.
If you can’t reach anyone from the business to get a refund, Dumore suggests contacting a government agency that offers consumer protection services in your state.
We reached out to the Consumer Protection Division of the Attorney General’s Office. Representatives say they have yet to receive any formal complaints about the business.
The representative told CBS4 the process that the office takes when dealing with complaints:
- The consumer files a complaint online.
- That complaint goes to the intake office where they send the consumer a letter to confirm we’ve received their complaint.
- The intake office then decides which department the complaint needs to go to.
- The complaint is sent to the department it needs to go to, where that department then sends a letter stating the complaint has made it to the right hands.
- The consumer is updated on where the process goes from there depending on the type of complaint.
We called Dottie Couture and left a voicemail along with sending emails to all emails available on the website Wednesday. As of the time of this report, we have not received a response.