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Return Authorization Process

How the Process Works

The Retail Equation’s Verify Return Authorization can be configured in several ways, depending on the retailer’s requirements. In most cases, when a consumer wants to make a return, a retailer will scan the original purchase receipt and will also swipe or scan the individual’s driver’s license or government-issued ID card. (This is actually a common process; in fact, according to the National Retail Federation's 2011 return survey, 62% of retailers require an ID to perform a merchandise return without a receipt.)

ID collection is performed in order to make an accurate identification of the person and his/her unique return behavior.  As you return merchandise, the system compares variables such as your return frequency, dollar amounts, and/or time against a set of prescribed rules that form that particular retailer’s return policy.

Verify Return Authorization enables retailers to rely on objective, verifiable data to determine whether a return is valid rather than relying on subjective observations and guesswork by sales clerks.  This objectivity ensures that only those with highly suspect return-and-exchange behavior are affected.  The vast majority — approximately 99% — of returns are accepted.

FAQ: How is Return Fraud and Abuse Hurting the Economy?

Return fraud abuse is costing retailers and workers between 524,000 and 673,000 jobs, and states are losing a total of $870 million to $1.1 billion annually in sales tax revenues.

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