UK retailer Zavvi has reportedly threatened some customers with legal action after a warehouse bungle saw the company accidentally post out free PlayStation Vita consoles.
A mix-up in October saw the company send out a £169.99 (approximately $280) Tearaway Vita bundle to customers who only preordered the £19.99 ($32) game.
After realising their mistake, Zavvi asked the recipients to send the goods back. "We are very sorry to inform you that due to an error in our warehouse we have dispatched the incorrect product," read an initial e-mail from the company, as reported by Darkzero.
But now--presumably after some of the customers opted not to return the free hardware--Zavvi is said to have issued a "final notice" to the new owners of the hardware bundles. The company is now reported to be threatening legal action to those who fail to contact the company before 17:00 GMT today and arrange a courier to collect the goods.
"This is our final notice to politely remind you that you did not order, or pay for, a PS Vita and if you fail to contact us by 5pm (UK time) on 10th December 2013 to arrange a convenient time for the PS Vita to be collected we reserve the right to enforce any and/or all legal remedies available to us," wrote the company.
"Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the correct collection details. We look forward to hearing from you shortly."
Do those who have received a free Vita in the post have a legal right to keep the item, however? The Citizen's Advice Bureau says that the UK's distance selling regulations stipulate that customers sent unsolicited goods are allowed to keep them, but not necessarily if they've been sent them in error.
"The Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations say you have a right to keep goods delivered to you that you didn’t ask for. But if goods are sent to you by mistake, you need to contact whoever sent them to let them know and ask them to collect the goods. You might get goods sent by mistake if they are meant for someone else or you’ve been sent duplicate or extra items on top of what you ordered."
"If you receive goods you have not ordered and which haven’t been sent by mistake, you can treat the goods as an unconditional gift and you can do what you want with them."
Zavvi previously declined to comment to GameSpot on the issue.