In the current economic climate ( recession? ) it is not all that unusual unfortunately for retailers and/or suppliers to go broke leaving customers in the situation where they have paid for goods but those goods will never be delivered to the customer. Recently the whitegoods company Kleenmaid went into Liquidation leaving about 4,500 customers in that position.
However if the customers had paid for their goods using one of the major credit cards then the customers can get their money back . Under a scheme known as “Chargeback” the customer can claim a refund for “undelivered” or not “ as described” goods so long as they claim the refund within 75 days of the transaction date.
This facility applies to both goods and to services. For example a few years ago when Ansett Airlines collapsed customers who had booked flights on their credit cards were able to apply for charge backs worth several million dollars and those claims which were made in time and proved to be genuine were honoured.
Chargeback arrangements also apply to Debit cards, but in more limited circumstances than for credit cards. In the case of debit cards if you press “savings” or “cheque” when making a payment then you may not be covered by the scheme.
Chargeback is not just for reversing transactions when goods or services are not supplied. It also can be used potentially to correct duplicate billing, to fix a bank processing mistake or fraud where the customer did not authorise a purchase on their card.
So it may be safer to pay for goods on a credit card and then use your cash to reimburse the card account.