101 thoughts on “Staples Easy Rebates Horror Story

  1. Eddy Chanst

    I found this website because I wanted to know how many people got screwed by Staples’ rebate scam. I wish I had read this before buying from Staples; my rebate is rejected due to missing UPC which the rebate form has stated explicitly as NOT required! I gave up at this point as Staples may come up with something else after I submitted the UPC (it happened to some people already). I’m now stucked with an opened box that cannot be returned. My final advise, only go after instant rebate and do not shop at dishonest merchants such as Staples.

  2. S. Warren

    Glad to know that I am not the only one who is getting screwed. I mailed my rebate offer Aug 26, 2007. I called to check on the status on Oct 15 and I was told that it was mailed Oct. 4. I have never had mail take 11 days to arrive. I called again on Oct 18, and the story this time was that I did not include the serial # on the rebate form. I have emailed my concerns to the web address on the rebate form and now the story is that if I did not mail my original copies to Florida or Texas that they did not where my rebate ended up at. The address on the form was Young America, MN. I have since tried to receive my rebate through the website. We will see where that gets me. I believe all refunds, rebates and coupons should be outlawed and the price on the shelf should reflect the cheaper price. I believe the theory is we will give up and forget it.

  3. Reni Roscelli

    I sent my rebate in on Aug. 24 2007. (see the above letter of that date). Just wanting to let you know I have received my $50.00 rebate on about Sept 29th 2007. I did use the piority mail with the post office. I documented the mail with delivery confirmation. Perhaps this is the most sure way to deal with staples rebates. ooooor maybe I was just one of the lucky ones. Good luck to all you rebaters.

  4. Shauna Hahn

    My husband purchased the Kodak EasyShare camera from Staples and we did the online rebate and have never received the rebate. I kept all my emails from Staples that each of the Staples employees tell me they are trying to research it more and it will take 8-10 weeks. This was back in Dec. of 2006 and I still have not received any info. They just keep telling me that it will take weeks to research it and they will let me know after that time. It is never ending. I will NEVER do one of their rebates ever again.


    Staples’ rewards program is a fraud in that if you select the Staple Rewards Premier Card you no long earn a percentage of your purchase back unless you meet the quarterly spending requirement on only paper, ink and copy purchases. What a fraud.

    This managing partner is a 56 member firm has ordered no further purchases at Staples and is now using Office Depot.

  6. Rhonda Leija

    I am SOOO not suprised to hear these things! Forthe past 3 years in a row my husband and I have not gotten the rebates for Turbo Tax.We mentioned this at the store when given a rebate offer on our sons $150 calculator. They told us the same thing..”bring back in all the bar codes,I.D. numbers ,blah blah” Like I have all that after 3 years!!
    What a bunch of poo! Thank for the info… I will be bugging the crap out of them!

  7. reni roscelli

    Thanks for sharing.
    I’m claiming a rebate right now. After reading you horror story I think I’ll use the old post office service…although they make a lot of mistakes lately too.
    I wonder, can Staples review the back of the so called “cleared check” and see who endorsed it and where it was cashed. Perhaps you would have an answer to the mystery if it had been cashed by a mail thief….they do exist, you know.
    I think the $15.00 compensation check is way too little for all your time and aggravation. Consider what lawyers charge for just a 10 minute phone call these days. In a real way you were acting the part of a lawyer, protecting your rights, gathering accurate documentation, presenting you case clearly and concisely to several appropriately researched concerns….Kudos to you!!!! You should be equally compensated for your work. A mere $15.00 is a joke. Staples nearly drove you nutz, denying your request.
    I think it was a cheap cop out to keep you quiet. After all—look what you did…
    You actually got the “Big Guys” to listen to you AND to be on your side.
    I really miss the ‘good ol days’, when people answered the phone…and when an item went on sale it was simply reflected in the price tag.
    Kudos to you!! from a Staples customer

    ADENDUM: I just read some of these comments-after I wrote the above
    E mail. Holy Cow.!!!
    What a consumer fraud class action suit this would be. I just made a $#00.00 purchase at staples,because of the $50.00 rebate offer. Lets see if I get mine . I’m using the mail… good luck to me and every one else.

  8. C.J. BROOKS

    This is GREAT! I appreciate reading all of this.

    Would you believe that I got a letter from a Pam Merritt at Staples Headquarters, actually BANNING ME FROM ALL STAPLES STORES and from SHOPPING ONLINE, just bcause I called their Customer Service to COMPLAIN about one of their delivery boys?

    I have no problem sharing the letter and full story with you! Contact me at voiced_one@yahoo.com.

  9. Rick Drew

    I’ve has over a dozen “easy” rebates that were easy, and not a single bad one at staples. However….

    Trend Micro: Another of the rebate scammers. I purchased their PCcillin product at Office Depot. There were two rebates. One was a competitive upgrade, the other a simple rebate. They were designed to work together (not valid with any other rebate except xxxx). Both were submitted. Three months pass. Four. Five. I check the rebate site. Both were “never received.” I call the rebate company. Yes they were received, but could not be used together. I pointed out the fact that were wrong and the forms clearly stated they could be used together. “sorry, we’ll process them…”

    Two months later the competitive upgrade check arrives. Back to calling. They refuse to honor the retail purchase rebate for the same previously given (false) reason. I like the product, hate the rebate scam. I have to renew the anti-virus subscription in a couple of months. At $49!? Nope. Found the product, new, on eBay for $10 – for 3 PC’s. Why renew? Screw ‘em.


    Symantec: Never honored 5 out of 7 rebates. Their policy – this is the truth – if it’s lost in processing or the mailroom, it’s considered lost in the mail!


    eXtreme Memory: Stalled and denied rebates of Compact flash cards to myself, a friend, and my partner. Finally sent the rebates after 13 months of complaining. One check bounced because it was “stale”, and the other two were $15 instead of $35!


    Scanport: Received a 19″ LCD as a gift. I processed the $100 rebate personally and sent it overnight mail. They denied receiving it, even though I had a signature and delivery confirmation. I had it insured and filed a claim. They told the post office they received it. Claim denied. Sent that “we received it” notice to Scanport. “sorry, that rebate has expired…”


    A note. I am a “rebate expert” – I photocopy everything, make sure the UPC is clean and clear, keep a followup file and followup faithfully. I follow every rule and regulation, We purchase a lot of PC products and electronics. Sony: eleven rebates, never a problem. Nikon: Three rebates, all perfect. Maxtor: Three rebates, perfect. So not all companies are scammers. But Symantec, eXtreme, Trend Micro and Scanport have well deserved reps as con rebate artists.

  10. Eunice

    Sorry you have had problems. I was totally satisfied with my first easyrebate submitted on the internet. I knew my sister was interested in a 1 MB SD card, so I emailed her that there was one that, with the rebate, would be about $13. I told her I had found submission easy. She replied that she had had the same good experience, and thanked me for my alert. Although she was on vacation, she found a Staples. I, too, purchased 2 items with rebates, and we both have submitted our information, and anticipate no problems.

  11. Laura

    Staples turned my “easy rebate” into a nightmare!!

    No more STAPLES for me!

  12. jik Post author

    How do you feel about working for a company that you wouldn’t buy from, that is too expensive and “doesn’t really care about the consumer”? I sure wouldn’t want to work for a company like that!

  13. Candace

    Wow. I actually just started working at Staples, and I never bought anything from there, just because it’s too expensive and Staples doesnt really care about the consumer. And as far as Parago goes, please those companies dont care about anyone. I would just suggest that if anyone has a problem with anythinig concerning staples, you just take it straight to corporate because when it comes down to it, they still want your money. Sorry this had to happen to you guy but hey…another story for the kids!

  14. njnana11

    This is not a problem with a rebate, but a problem with a computer we brought in to our local Staples for repair. We were told it would take a week to repair it….it’s been 5 weeks and we still do not have it back. To add insult to injury, we were told the total repair would cost $270.00 and when we received our Amex bill, there was a charge for $340 on it….and still no workable computer. I’m trying to find phone numbers in the Staples corporate office, particularly for the head of customer service. Can anyone help with this or at least point me in the right direction? Thanks so much for any help that can be given for this.

  15. nw

    Since Jan 22, 2007 I have been trying to get a rebate from Staples. Every 15 days they send me an e mail saying it has been mailed. When I reply that I havn’t received it they say they will send a check since I waited so long. Still nothing. I called and a very nice lady said she was sorry. She checked and they said another one was mailed and I would have it in 15 days. Still nothing. This is the second year in a row that this has happened. No more STAPLES for this family. All they do is lie.

  16. F.M.

    Glad someone did this, to make it short i think all rebates sucks……
    I bought a hp lap top and submitted my rebate for 50.00 on the 4-19 same day i bought it.
    called just to check on the 5-1, told me if i didn’t here any thing in 10days to call back.
    called back on the 5-14, was put on hold and they told me “not to worry about it, it would be mailed in the next two weeks.
    called back on the 5-27 and now they tell me they are not the ones handling the rebate that i need to call the manufactor HP.
    so on the 5-27 i called HP and now they are telling me it will be another 2 to 3 weeks.
    i think i will just tear the rebate papers up from now on it’s just not worth all the run around.
    thanks again for letting people know and letting us tell you about our problems.


    I have never in my lfe been as frustrated by any store rebates as I have been with Staples, my requests for followup have just resulted in frustating emailed requesting more info, hewlett Packrad rebate sent back a letter asking for ” paperwork you didn’t send ” without desscribing what they wanted , phone call greated from some other country that told me to call back after the holiday , I didn’t know they celebrated any american hoidays . I have come to the conclusion that everything Staples says is suspect. They even
    gave me a “Rewards” card then later told me that
    computer or scanners didn’t count and I had to but $200 in merchadise withn a time period. All a lot of untruths. I , for one , have decided to seek my supplies soewhere I can trust them to do what they say.

  18. SeanDMan67

    I agree with you 100% jik but whether it’s an input error, misplaced submission item, computer glitch, or system issues … nothing is perfect. Personally, I would rather speak to a REAL person (face to face even) rather than go through the telephone prompts, elevator music and the chance I might get disconnected. Trust me, as a manager, I don’t want ANY of my customers to be upset by anything associated w/ Staples. Is that possible? Well, if it was I wouldn’t have a thing to say but, “Thank you for shopping at Staples.”

    With this said, and trust me from my side I TRULY feel your pain, I have been on the phone w/ the Parago people looking into lost or invalid rebates. Usually after about 15-20 minutes, the process is all over … painless even. To whomever it was that had some manager calling all over the place, yes, he was new and should be slapped. He may have been nice, gracious and even honest … but 90 minutes? He was looking after his own interests not the customers or Staples as a company. Looking for a, “Your rebates suck, but your was wonderful!” comment to corporate. Sadly he didn’t understand it still looks poorly on him and his store. EVERY manager has an escalation process that can be used in EVERY rebate situation.

    I still stand by Staples “EASY” rebates as being one of the best things this company has done for it’s customers. Be sure you are submitting an EASY rebate also. Just from some of the prior replys, some of these people have tried using the easy rebate process for manufactuers rebates. It’ll never work!!

    Oh, Staples fiscal year ends in late February not Jan 1. (see site: http://library.corporate-ir.net/library/96/962/96244/items/233727/SPLSq4.pdf)

    Your rebate for the TV (which I also bought and received my EASY rebate) was sold during the busiest shopping time of the year, the number of rebates submitted for that ad alone, out-numbers almost 1/2 of the year. So wouldn’t it be understandable that the process would take a bit longer?

    I truly wish each of you would come into my store or your local store and see how the process really is EASY. For the person that lives far away from a Staples store, call the closest store, give them all of the needed information and have them look into it. Mention the “ESCALATION PROCESS” and you will feel your stress level lower within minutes.

  19. SeanDMan67

    WOW! It’s funny how all of these complaints could’ve been handled by a simple trip back to the store. As a consumer, I’ve dealt w/ rebates and like the process as much as getting a wine bottle shoved up my butt. Ok, not that I’ve actually tried that but I have a VERY GOOD idea it wouldn’t be very pleasant.

    But what’s REALLY funny is, all of these Parago complaints could’ve been taken care of by making a trip back to the store. Speak to a manager, explain the issue and it’s a done deal. Usually checks are mailed within 7-14 business days after that manager has verified the purchase information w/ Parago.

    Rebates will ALWAYS be a pain in the butt, but if you look on the bright side, Staples lets you do it online. No wasted stamps, envelopes or trip to the post office. You have ever bit of verification at your fingertips without having to make or save additional copies. As you complain, ask yourself, did you do everything correctly?

    Yes, I’m a Staples employee and have seen these things happen and have solved a rebate issue here and there in my 5 years w/ the company. But in the end, MY customers walk out saying, “That was easy!”

    For all of you that “ignore” rebate offers or don’t want to sublit them, please contact me so I can give you all my address so you can forward them to me! I make good money w/ Staples but I”m not against having more!!

  20. jik Post author

    What’s really funny is that there are people who think it’s reasonable to put people through what Parago puts people through and/or to demand that people shlep out of their way to go back to the store to get a rebate which they were promised.

    In other words, the fact that one might be able to resolve a rebate problem by returning to the store is really beside the point.

  21. Elizabeth Wagner

    I learned to not waste my time with rebates from Staples after being unable to redeem a $40 rebate. From then on I try NOT to go to Staples at all, but if I MUST, I ignore any rebate offer. My time and patience are worth more than the headache of trying to redeem any rebates from Staples.

  22. charles stacker

    I stumbled upon this complaint by accident, yes I’m due for a rebate. $15 to be exact. Alone these same lines I have a problem with AT & T they have fee based tech support service $139 six months $99 five days. The day I needed support I paid for six months what a deal Right, Wrong. The Techs who work that day didnt have a clue as to what to do. After Three return calls (all in the same day) from me to them. They finally told me to take it to the shop. Well what did I pay $139 for. The last tech I spoke to said He did $99 worth of labor. I would like to know where I can voice my complaint. The money is not the main Issue here I was told all alone I could and would recieve a total refund as the days went by my refund kept getting smaller and smaller Now I’m only eligible for $40.

  23. Matt

    I work as a retail manager for Staples and I have to say I HATE rebates myself! I hate the fact that we have to mess with rebates when the customer comes in because the idiots at the processing company did something wrong. Plus, they make it difficult for customers to understand and mistakes do happen. I wish they would just start offering instant rebates and get rid of the damned rebates altogether; it would make my job easier, customers’ happier, and probably increase our loyalty. I’ve suggested it before but the corporate office will hear no such thing….bastards.

    Mike the Rebateless….I’m sorry to hear about your problem! Go into any Staples store and speak with a manager about your situation. Be sure to bring in all of your documentation. We have a system in place now where we can submit all of you information through the web and get the rebate cut within 7-14 business days. It’s been in place for over a year and I have only had one customer that didn’t receive his rebate after I did this. Give it a try and hopefully it will work out better for you next time!

  24. John Irving

    Ditto all of that. Mine has to do with multiple household limit. Me and my father bought the same item with rebates but I used my address and phone number. He used his. Different households. So, they still marked it as same household. I messaged them back and they said they would fix it and send. Sure enough never got fixed. Made a second call today. Hopefully I will get it. PS: It is $80 too :/

  25. Laura H.

    Wow! I was just getting ready to submit my rebate online and now have decided to make copies and send it via mail (keeping my fingers crossed of course.) Thanks for giving us the heads up. I like to shop at Staples, but if I don’t get my $100.00 rebate……well I know someone personally that works for the ILL Attorney General’s office so I will be letting him handle this for me.

  26. Mike the rebateless

    Lured by an attractive price, I took the plunge into my first Staples “easy rebate” purchase. This was actually part of a dual purchase, one worse than the other! Like many folks in the northeast, around the holidays, we were bombarded by Staples flyers with incredible deals.
    The first purchase was an “immediate rebate” item, specifically a 4 GB flash drive. The product was not on the shelf where it belonged, only a picture of the item with all of the relevant information, i.e., detailed description, SKU#, etc. The picture was brought to the counter and presented to the cashier. However, when the item was retrieved, the wrong item was pulled from stock and I received a much smaller rebate for the incorrect and inferior item. When the bill was tallied, the rebate and item cost were discussed; I was advised that some of the rebate was immediate and the rest would be offered via the “easy rebate” system. This was all bunk, the clerk placed the wrong item into my bag with the deftness of a cat burglar and keyed in the wrong item and the higher price. When I examined my purchase at home, the bait and switch game was apparent…, I was the looser! I returned immediately to a mobbed store to exchange the item for the correct flash drive.
    The second purchase was a Maxtor 200GB IDE drive; this was an actual “easy rebate” item. The price was too good to pass up; I was advised that the rebate would be issued in 7 – 10 days. About two weeks thereafter, the rebate status from the website was “pending validation”, not good. I waited another week, but the status didn’t change. This time, I called Staples to obtain the “easy rebate” telephone number 877-266-6483 (this number isn’t listed on the site). Through the voice mail drill down, I was advised that purchases made on or after 11/24/2006 would not be processed until after 1/4/2007. Now I can’t fault a company’s desire to make their sales numbers in one year and payback in a subsequent year, but I do expect honesty. Now its 02/02/2007, and still no rebate! The rebates status on Staples “easy rebate” site has changed from “pending validation” to “printed/mailed”, whatever that actually means. However, after more than a week, still no rebate delivery. I called the toll free customer service number several times today, tolerated the voice drill downs, then was disconnected both times while awaiting a customer representative. Kudos to Staples, well done!

  27. Judith H

    Let me say that the rebate processing is almost certainly outsourced and the issue with employees is speed, not accuracy. I worked tech support for an online service in the late nineties. I was refused the opportunity to answer emails because I tried to directly answer questions and didn’t simply copy and paste from their so-called “knowledge base”. Employees are not encouraged to solve the problem but simply to get the issue off their desktop. The faster you do it the better. Obviously nothing has changed. The only solution is outside pressure and perseverence. In this case you won, but if Staples was paying for your time and effort it would have cost a lot more. The Symantec people might want to know about this too. I just bought a McAfee Virus program for my laptop which hasn’t been connected to the internet up to now. I bought McAfee because it had a $10. rebate at Staples, even though it was originally the same price as Norton. I would have preferred Norton but they get confused when you have their product on two computers and I already have their software on my desktop. If I were Norton, I’d offer my own rebate, which I’d much rather use than Staples.

  28. Don H.

    WOW! Thank you for your diligence. I was about to try online submission, but do not see an easy rebate ID #. there is a rebate offer# on the slip. Guess I will mail it and wait(but not too long before persuing it if necessary). I got a very nice Targus notebook(computer) case for 37.49 minus 9.00 (three printer cartriges and a 12.50 rebate (hopefully).

  29. MK

    I was going to buy the 400GB Western Digital hard drive for $99 (after $40 easy rebate) at Staples but decided not to after reading this story.
    I guess what staple considers “easy” is actually “impossible”.

  30. Margie F.

    Thank you for this blog. I just received an email from my husband regarding a 32″ television being sold at Staples for $500 (savings of $600) with “Easy Rebate”. Well, I’ve been there before. Months and months of contacting Staples, I finally received my rebate. Instead of considering the purchase of this television, I decided to search the net to see if anyone else out there had had this problem. I copied your story and emailed it to everyone in my address book encouraging them to refrain from falling for this scam the during the holiday season. Most families who need the rebate truly need the money. I hope they read your story and decide to spend their hard-earned money with companies who are trustworthy. I have purchased a computer through HP with a rebate and rebate for a free printer and received them both. Just wanted to let everyone know of a company who does keep their word and encourage others to post the companies that can be trusted. Thanks again.

  31. gold

    just got a email from staples abt a rebate offer that since my rebate submitted over the net came in duplicate is was invalid..what goes on with these people i didnt sumit it in duplicate just once……,who can i contact for some quick and easy resolution……..i havnt shopped at any of the stores that stiff me …i have cut out using those merchants and told others of my disgust………if they dont intend to offer these rebates….dont give them to customers .i dont shop because of the rebate …

  32. Paulla

    Never receilved a 30.00 rebate that I sent for two years ago. Never forgot it either. Never bought from Staples again for a long time. Do not like or trust that Co.

  33. TOM the BEACHBUM

    I JUST CAME BACK FROM STAPLES AFTER GETTING a GREAT BUY ON a HP PAVILION LAPTOP DV6105 for $549.00 AFTER a Easy $50.00 On Line Rebate. I Came Across Your Story Searching for their Site and to Put it Mildly I was Very Impresssed with Your Patience Taking the TIME to STICK IT to THEM which should of Never Been Necessary!! I am a Cancer ( Non Hodgins Lymphoma – Aggressive ) Patient with Severe Lymphodema of Both Arms which is Clearly Visible to Anyone 20 Feet Away since Fluid Collects in Both Arms & Hands Making Me Look Like Popeye. Anyway I Mention this for a Reason. I Call ahead Knowing a Price Leader Like this is Always OUT of Stock Just Like Comp USA, Office Depot, Office Max and all the rest. To My Great Surprise the Nearby Delaware Store ( NO Sales) Told My Best Friend, a Nurse they Had 8 Laptops Left in Stock at 10am so She Had them Reserve One for Her to Pick Up after 8pm. I woke Up at 4pm and Hearing Her Ans Machine Message about Availabilty ( Staples On Line Site Said SOLD OUT, which from Prior Experience was No Surprise to Me So I went to Bed Never thinking I Could BUY This ‘Alledged’ Week Long Great Buy SALE Item with None of Their Usual Small Print Disclaimers Regarding Limited Stock, No RainChecks, Product Only On Hand, No Special Orders etc etc Staples Offered in the Sunday Paper Circular) I Called at 5pm to Make sure they Had a Laptop Left I Could Purchase so I did Not Waste the Trip to their Store Playing the Bait & Switch Game. I Spoke to Ron who Turned Out to be their Big Cheese and a Royal Pain in the Ass when I arrived at the Store with My Nice Nurse Friend Rachel. I am sorry for the Long Rant but here is My Mini Nightmare Condensed Believe Me! We Get a SalesMan’s Attention who Turned out to be Ron and asked for the Two Laptops We Had Both put on Hold Until 8pm. In Fact we actually had Three on Hold because when I Called and Explained Rachel had already Reserved One I Just Needed One Under My Name Freeing Staples Up to Unload whatever Other ones they Had. I even Offered to Give them My Credit Card Number to Reserve the Laptop But No Problem, They Didn’t Need it they Said. Nice I Thought. The Problem Began when We Asked for the Two Laptops Taking the SalesMan directly over to the Product since He Pretended to Not Know what Laptop I was Talking about for $549.00 even though It is Smack on the Front Page and I had the Circular in My Swollen Puffy Hands! He went in the Back out of Site Not Returning with the Laptops Holding the Product index Card he had Removed out in front of the Laptop Revealing the Regular Price of $799.00 underneath Making Us Feeling even Better Thinking what a Great Deal We Both were Getting on a Decent AMD 64 Mobile Chipset Laptop with Dual Burners! But Alas We Get Ganged Up on by 3 different Sales Guys that suddenly Came Out of Nowhere Pushing and I Mean Pushing their $200. Extended Warranty even though We Both Politely Said No Thank You. In Fact I Called their Attention to my serious Health Problem explaining of how a Extended Warranty would be of Little Good to Someone in my Situation adding although I Do Not Have a Exact Date of My Death, I am Terminally Ill. They Did Not Give Up! They Even Kept Talking Flashing Repair Cost Sheets in front of Us Telling Two Potential Customers Asking for Help they would be Right With Them and Doing their Best to Wear Us Down Making both of Us Honestly Thinking if We Didn’t give them the OK to the Damn Warranty they would have some story of how the “On Hold” Laptops were Not in the Store due to a Mixup. Finally when Rachel Said If they Didn’t Produce the Darn Laptops and “Allow” Us to buy them without the Extended Warranty We Were Leaving Immediately and She was Going to Contact the BBB along with Their Corportate Office. Believe Me I am Telling You and Anyone else who reads this the Shortened Version. I was approached again at the Cash register by a Heavy Set Swarmy Looking Guy with a Laminated Sheet Showing Repair Prices for Various Computer Problems saying He Felt it was “His Duty” to Warn Us Both of the Risk We were Taking Not Having their Lousy 2 Year Warranty which strange Enough did Not Extend the One Year HP Warranty by Two Years= 3 Years But Rather Supercede the Manufacturer Warranty Giving the Owner a Total of Two Years. He also Told Me that the HP Warranty would not Cover the Laptop’s Screen which he Knew would Puch My Buttons since that was the Reason I was Buying a New Laptop in the First Place. My Less than 3 Year old Compaq’s Screen has gone 95% Dark Making It Unusable without a External Screen. I Think He is Lying about that. Why would a New Laptop Screen Not be Covered by HP’s One Year Labor & Parts Warranty? I want to Look into that Fact to see if I was Being Lied to. I Just Got a Call from a Friend in Medical Records who is a Computer Whiz. He Says sometimes it is the Battery that ahs Gotten Older that Can cause this Problem even though I was Using AC Power when the Laptops Screen went 95% Dark. He said to Remove the Batterty, set it aside, Replace it inside the Bay and Reboot. According to Him the Power Goes through the Battery even on AC Power and a Old Battery Can sometimes Cause this Problem. It won’t Hurt to Try this especially since Staples Offered No Quick Solution except a Horror story of Paying $600. for a New Screen on a Laptop that cost me about $700. in Oct of 2002. Sorry for the Long Rant but I Cannot Express How Great it was to read your Persistance in Getting Your Rebate not Giving Up like they Hoped You would. Lets Face it, that is the Whole Idea of Rebates in the First Place which is a Large % of Consumers Never Send them in! The Other trick I Noticed the Stores do is send the Rebates to You on a Postage Card that Looks Like Junk Mail which I almost Threw away. My Best Friend from Highschool Told Me Tonight He almost did the Same thing. No Longer do you Get a Standard Sized Check Clearly Labeled from the Sender in a Regular Letter sized Envelope. Yes I should Know Better and Tonight We Both Left the Staples Store Very Happy We were able to Buy a Great Bargain Basement Laptop for Under $600. But when I Think of all the People who Must Go through what we Went Through Buying a Extended Warranty which the Major Consumer Mag says is a Bad deal It Makes Me Feel Bad for Them. I Have Worked in the mental Healthsystem for Over 23 Years and 8 Years with Geriatric Patients. This is a Group of People that are Really Taken advantage of, the Elderly. I Know My Mother would of Been Scammed into their Warranty Game and it is Pathetic. The Point is this. I admire Your Persistance and want to Warn Others at the Heavy Handed, Aggressive, Pushy, Scare Tactics Staples Uses when You Purchase any Product. I also Know from Experience they are Not alone as Best But and Circuit City also Plays the Game But Never Have I Been subjected to the Pressure & Games I Got Tonight! I was well aware that They Did not want to Part with their Sale Product which was a Obvious “Sales Leader” hoping to Make the Profit on the Extended Warranty not Taking a Polite NO as a Answer. No wonder I and May Other Consumers Buy On Line although Returns on a Item Like a Laptop could be Tricky. I Have Had Great Experience with the BUY.COM Web Site with Free Shipping and no Sales Tax. So Far Anyway! Take Care, Tom 3

  34. Sylvia Kressley

    I too am waiting for my easy rebate from StaplesI sent in my rebate form in the mail a good month or more and haven’t received any info except that is being processed… all I can say it must be coming to me by way of China. I am waiting for a month and always get the same reply it is being processed!!! Well I won’t want to hang til it gets here . so much for shopping at Staples Stores for me . I will avoid Staples like the plague!!! Hopefully I will get my rebate before I am setting up residency in an old folks home. Sincerely , Sylvia Kressley

  35. Rita

    I’ve wasted 2/3rds of my day trying to figure out whats up with Staples so think I’ll waste the rest boxing up this “piece” and dumping it right back in their laps rather than spending amy more of my precious time.

  36. Trisha

    UGH! I just got caught up in Staples “Easy Rebate” trap. Wish I read this before I made my purchase from Staples. Now I know not to buy into their Rebate scam. AWFUL.

  37. rrr

    Thank you for this site. Unfortunately, I read it after the fact. Still, I hope this helps someone else. I have had the unfortunate experience of the “office depot”come on’s where you get to the store at opening time the day of the sale, just to be told that sorry…we are sold out..TO WHo??????I was the only one there. I have sent in numerous mail in rebates that of course never turned around….But recently I had a great experience with an instant rebate online thru Costco….so…I figured wow, this works and the world of rebates is finally possible…MISTAKE…and now thanks to STAPLES I am now a disbeliever again….I have a fairly large family, mother of 6/5teens still at home…husband is a programmer…..we have alot of computers…the kids are doing homeschool…you get the picture…I was ready to purchase 2 new computers for my own use…a laptop and a desktop for my office…My local staples store In VISALIA CA…where I have purchased many items in the store, ie: paper products, desks,etc. had a nifty sale on their computers with an attractive instant online rebate:(not sure how instant that is )but, the $ were right for the desk top and what I would use it for so, off I went debating on whether I should purchase my laptop there also(luckily I did not)..all was well, I took my computer and my fifty million rebate receipts(see you need 2 receipts for every portion of the computer; the PCU, the printer, the monitor….I went home..and because of a hectic work sched. did not do the rebates until 2 wks later….thats okay…I have 45 days according to STAPLES…..yea…..I spent 35 min.filling everything in very carefully online-heeding the warnings all over the page that if not done correctly will be invalid….So, after carefully submitting all of my numbers and information…I breathe a deep sigh of relief as the computer processes my information-looking like this is actually going to work like it should….then, the story begins….a page comes up that tells me I should print this info for my confirmation….however, to my horror…..in front of my eyes….someone elses name, home address, phone number, email address with a confirmation number , a thank you for purchasing and a reassurance that they would quickly send him a check for the rebates $225.00!!!!!!!!/okay, after the momentary shock….I reck the numbers I entered….yup ..all correct…..I printed the page….called my STAPLES STORE and spoke with the manager….who very nicely asked me to bring my papers and the printed confirmation in to him….so, I did…..he spent 90 minutes on the phone with….Young America….who kindly directed him to someone else, and so on down the line…..he also attempted to contact staples corporate….as time went on,and he continued to get the run around(I was standing right next to him) his face grew redder and redder and he began to stammer….I almost felt sorry for him….I thought…he must be new…he is actually trying to resolve this and believes it is an innocent mistake…maybe a computer glitch….the result after 90 minutes….he explained to me that the end of the chain on the phone that he spoke to stated that I would have to submitt the rebates via mail(as they could not find me in their system)and that I would have to wait 8-10 wks for my rebate(the stall game)/he then did something interesting…..he printed several copies of my receipt of purchases and gave them to me along with my original purchase receipts and a piece of paper with a phone number on it…he said here are extra copies so you can mail some in for your rebates, then he looked at me and said,,,,and this is the phone number to the corporate office of STAPLES so that when you don’t get you rebate in 8-10 wks you can call them…..WOW….was I actually in the presence of an honest person??? I thought…I kind of feel sorry for him(since my temper had been showing a liitle earlier), also…since I knew he wouldn’t last long as a STAPLES store manager for long if he continued to be honest. The next day, still pondering what the best way to deal with this is….I started my search on the internet…simply putting the words in :”problems with STAPLES Rebates”(I had gone back to the site…stapleseasyrebates.com and tried to track the rebates with the name and info on the confirmation I had…of course it should this persons name with my rebate numbers and $ but when I tried to ck the status, it just keeps throwing errors)…I did a mapquest on this persons’ address….an abandoned garage on the bad side of town…the phone number(a fake)/so I found my results on line…7757 actual possible places that talk about STAPLES and the complaints/problems with their rebates. I cked out yours…read the comments and instead of being angry anymore….felt empowered…THANK YOU!!!!!! I cked out the links to consumer affairs and found the suits involved all over the United States for Fraud against Young American and the BBB complaints against STAPLES….I decided….yes, the computer I purchased is not top of the line ..it is mid line…but was a reasonably good Price still….yes , I could keep it and walk away after blowing off steam…but then the problem continues….for everyone…..so..I promptly took all of my files off from my computer, did a clean install to take it back to it’s in store condition, called the nice manager at my STAPLES store and informed him that I would be returning the entire package to him personally for a full refund, I explained what I found and the information on line re: STAPLES….I also explained that despite the fact that I don’t have alot of extra time and that to some degree I begrudge the fact that this is taking my free time away…I felt it was important that the public know about these type of events so that they can make the decision as to whether or not they really want to do business with STAPLES. He thanked me for the information, asked for copies of the info and the internet sites so that he could pass it on to corporate(he won’t last long like I said) and stated he would be glad to refund all of my money…nice guy…wrong job for him….I then registered on your site, and began this long commentary…I am sorry for that….but readers need to understand the whole scope…..As I said , you have inspired me….I will purchase my computers…..from COSTCO….they actually sent me my rebate in 7days after placing the info online…I will NOT purchase anything from STAPLES or any store that behaves in this manner/participates in deceitfull practices(OFFICE DEPOT), it may mean…I pay a little more…but in the long run if we all refuse to purchase from stores that practice deceit…..they will get the message…..I would have actually understood, if they would have said…looks like we have an IT problem, or someone hacked into our system….not your fault…here let us give you the rebate money…cause after all you have your cancelled ck,receipts your empty boxes,etc….I would have probably purchased more from them(my annual spending for business products and office furniture at STAPLES had run right around 3,000/yr)….but the run around was easy to spot….make it as difficult and as frustrating as possible and the customer will eventually just give up….so STAPLES….THANK YOU…BUT ….NO THANKS…

  38. Phil

    The best way to fight this is to find out the name of the company CEO, president etc. Send a letter (hard copy) explaining the problems and your dissapointment with the treatment you and your friends and family have recieved. Point out that much money is spent on advertising, which is negated with negative word of mouth testimony.

    He may never even get to read the letter, but someone at the top will. A memo will be sent to someone to check in to this. If you all do this, they will have to pay attention. It works!

  39. Marcel Lord


    When I saw the “easy rebate” format used on the Staples site all I said was “it’s about time someone simplefies this process”. I had always absolutely hated dealing with mail-in rebates and have very often passed up that “great deal” (after rebate of course). Well, the fun has just begun for me. I made up my on-line claim the same day my product arrived by courrier (on-line purchase). 1 week later I get an e-mail saying that they can’t process it the way it was submitted. I called them, they said they needed a copy of the UPC label faxed or sent to them. As if I keep packaging around for 1 week. They told me that I would have to go to a store (1 hour drive) and get the number from the UPC code of a similar product. I e-mailed them the number, the send me a note that it has to be mailed or faxed. Ok, by this time I’m getting at little hot. 1st of all, if it didn’t qualify for their “4 easy step, on-line rebate process” then why was it advertised as such. That’s what sucked me into the purchase in the first place. I fax them the number and then a day later, I get a e-mail saying that the number I supplied is no good to them. So, like you, it’s certainly not a matter of the money as it is principle. I was curious to see if other people had the same problem and google’d “Staples easy rebate” and that’s where I found your page (along with countless other). All I can say is “Way To Go!”

  40. Jim Robinson

    John Kamen –

    Thanks for the story & the warning. I am going to submit my claim on paper also, and if delayed, will take my case to the NY Attorney General’s Office, which used to have a pretty good record on consumer frauds. I guess I will find out whether it still does. I also won’t hold my breath while waiting for the check, as I see I am likely to expire before I get it. But I am also the tenacious kind, and will not let this go.

    Jim Robinson

  41. Joan Lanum

    Thanks for the “heads up”. I was just going online to file for a Staples rebate. Having just gone through a similar problem with a national magazine which involved fraud, the Staples scenario strikes a nerve. Unfortunately, it appears that there is an enormous gap between the consumer and customer service in our “modern” world. I’ll just make copies and mail in my forms with fingers crossed. Possibly if more people were to use cyperspace to tell their stories, technology would be put to it’s best use, sharing information.

  42. John Bell

    Thanks for taking the time to summarize your nightmare with Staples. It appears one of my own has just begun and I’ll make sure to incorporate some of your approach in solving mine.

  43. John Galie

    I too am having the same problem – what a scam – rebate sent Feb 2005, told it was backlogged in june 2005, then told it was sent in September – now it’s November and I haven’t received it yet. No reply to e-mails about this.

  44. jik Post author

    See also:


  45. jik Post author

    See, for example, http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/TechNews/Michetti/2005/10/12/1259091.html, about which I just sent this email:

    Mr. Michetti,

    I saw your October 12 “rants” column about rebates at http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/TechNews/Michetti/2005/10/12/1259091.html, and I wanted to comment on it.

    None of the big box retailers are going to take you up on your suggested remedy, because they don’t *want* the rebate process to be easy or to work properly most of the time. They want it to be a pain to submit rebate requests, and they want it to be a pain for people to make sure that they actually get the rebates once they’ve submitted the requests. This is all part of the business model of rebates.

    They get away with this because people let them. Many people don’t bother to submit their rebate requests at all. Others submit the requests and don’t follow up to ensure that they get the rebate. Others follow up, but when the rebate processing company puts one of the typical stumbling blocks in their way, they give up rather than persevering and demanding what they’re entitled to.

    As long as customers keep letting the retailers get away with this, the retailers will keep doing it. So what’s the answer? Well, one possible answer is to refuse to patronize stores which play the rebate game. Unfortunately, this significantly reduces one’s choices about where to shop, since so many retailers do it nowadays. Furthermore, some of the rebates really are good deals, and it can be a real shame to miss out on them out of righteous indignation.

    Therefore, plan B is to buy products with rebates, make sure to request the rebates properly, make sure to follow up on the rebate requests, and don’t give up until you get what you’re entitled to. If enough people do this, then cheating customers out of rebates will no longer be profitable, and the retailers will stop doing it.

    For example, you might enjoy reading my story about the months I spent fighting with Staples to get an “Easy Rebate” they owed me. It’s available at http://stuff.mit.edu/~jik/staples-story/.

    Take care,

    Jonathan Kamens

  46. jik Post author

    There have been many articles in the press about how retailers count on lots of customers never submitting their rebate requests and try to make it hard for the others to actually get their rebates. It doesn’t seem to have helped. Retailers will continue to engage in slimy rebate practices as long as people continue to put up with it. People need to submit every rebate to which they’re entitled, they need to follow up when the rebates don’t show up, and they need to persevere for as long as it takes to force the retailers to pay them what they’re owed.

  47. Amandeep Mann

    Thanks buddy,for your effortwe should up an entire web site concerning this beaurocracy-bussinessman hand in glove cheating scheme to lure the public . I have seen very few people out there who got their money back easily. Press should do something about it to highlight this issue.

  48. jik Post author

    Unfortunately, I’ve no reason to believe that rebates sent in by mail are any more likely to be processed smoothly than rebates submitted through the Web site. As far as I know, Parago processes both the Web requests and the mailed ones. Obviously, the mailed rebates go through different processing at some point, so that might make them more likely to be handled successfully, or it might make that less likely, or the same; there’s no way to know. In any case, I wish you luck!

  49. Barb Jahnke

    I really don’t need a reply, but sure glad I read this entire article BEFORE I submitted my online request. Mine will go into the mail with back up copies as I normally do with rebates. Appreciate the time you have put into this for the sake of others – Staples has become my least favorite store. Thanks


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