Project Genesis

The Jewish Legal System

Business Law

Misleading Price-list

I am a the manager of a restaurant, and I ordered 100 pounds of chicken cutlets from a new supplier. On the price-list, in the price per pound column, it said that the cost was $3.53 per pound. On the invoice, it states that I purchased 100 pounds of chicken cutlets at $3.53 per pound. Therefore, the total for that item should have been $353. However, the invoice listed the total for that item as $593!

When I inquired as to why there was a discrepancy, I was told that, “That item, and a few others on the page, are sold by the piece, not by the pound”. The supplier admitted that there was no way I could have known that in advance, but he is adamant that “nothing can be done”.  I don’t know why he did not tell me this when I placed my order!

I think that since the price list is clearly misleading, they should refund the $240. I don’t really want to dispute this charge with the credit card company because I want a good working relationship with the supplier. What should I do?

Thank you for your question- although I’m so sorry to hear about your situation. Based on the facts that you write here, you clearly have no obligation to pay the price that they’re asking of you now. However, as you yourself said, you want to keep a good working relationship with the supplier, so the choice is really yours as to what options you’d like to exercise. If there is another supplier you’re comfortable working with, you may want to contest the charge. If the relationship with your current supplier becomes difficult, then you can switch to yet another supplier. If not, it would probably be advisable to accept the loss as another expense necessary to keep your business running smoothly- despite the unfairness of it all.

Take care,

Rabbi Aaron Tendler

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