As the old saying goes, what you see isn’t always what you get, and in the hyper-competitive world of discount retail, a too-good-to-be-true deal isn’t usually what it appears.
A deceptive-pricing lawsuit against T.J. Maxx, filed Friday in California federal court by Staci Chester and Daniel Friedman, accused the off-price chain of tricking shoppers into believing they’re saving big bucks.
The proposed class-action complaint alleges the company uses fake comparison pricing to encourage consumers to spend.
According to a statement on T.J. Maxx’s website, the ‘compare at’ price listed on tags is the staff’s estimate of “the regular retail price at which a comparable item in finer catalogs, specialty or department stores may have been sold” and that “the item may not be offered by other retailers at [those] prices at any particular time or location.”
With that being said, the lawsuit claims thousands of California shoppers have likely been duped by misleading labels into making purchases they wouldn’t have.
“After reading T.J. Maxx’s interpretation of their ‘compare at’ pricing, I really don’t know what that price is, or where they came up with it,” Chester and Friedman’s lawyer, Christopher Morosoff, told Law360. “It appears that it’s just there to make me feel good about my purchase.”
He added, “In general, we think they need to be more clear about what their ‘compare at’ price is, and where they came up with it.”