questionswhen asked to show your receipt at stores likeā€¦


If you don't like the policies of the stores where you shop I would recommend taking your business elsewhere. There's no reason to stress out the poor wage slave who is just doing his/her job. What if your behavior got someone fired?


@ohcheri: What is wrong with my behavior? I am simply saying no. That is my right. The store has the right to detain me if they think I took something without paying for it. If they tell me they are detaining me I will willingly wait there until the police arrive. And when the police find I have not stolen anything I will ask for a copy of the report that I will take to a lawyer.

I have never had to do that but if forced to I will.


It's pretty rare (if ever) that I get asked for a receipt. Maybe I just don't look like a criminal. Generally, if I were in that situation I would just show it to them. Issues like that tend to cause too much hassle and problem to fight it rather than simply give in. As long as it is not bothering my conscience, I choose practicality.

That being said, it might affect my repeat business at that store.


As a past "door greeter" I only asked to see receipts for semantics only. I believe you could have easily gotten Mr. grabby fired for him laying hands on you.

The people that check receipts are not paid enough to put up with everyone's attitude.

Personally, it depends on what kind of day I'm having. I've done both and will probably continue that pattern.


Why would I refuse? It is a tactic used by some retailers to keep shoplifters from just trying to walk out with stuff. They occasionally (often randomly) ask to see receipts. Not a big deal. I have had it happen maybe half a dozen times.

Your response perplexes me. I could see someone saying "May I ask why?", but to respond "No thanks" and just keep walking when someone is just trying to do their job seems pretty rude and elitist to me.


@happyknappybeard: I don't have an attitude with any of the receipt checkers. When I say "No thanks." it is in a normal non-condescending voice.

I was not looking to get the person who grabbed my arm fired. That would have been entirely up to the store. If he had gotten fired though it would have been because of his own actions.

Btw...I know some customers have bad attitudes even before they come into a store. Giving that attitude to an employee, for no good reason, is just as bad as the employee doing the same to a customer.


I'd show my receipt. I'm not sure what the issue is; why not show it? Beyond that, depending on local laws, you might be required to comply. And I'm with @ohcherie, why ruin someone's day? Although I would take issue with the physical contact, as well.


Just show the receipt. Is that 10 seconds really making or breaking your day?


@okham: If it is the law that I show it then I would. If it is a written policy that I agreed to (as when I bought a Costco membership) I again will do it. But when it is an arbitrary rule put in place I will refuse.

If the stores post it prominently so I know they will ask I then would either not shop at those stores or, if I did shop there, I would show the receipt.


I show it at CostCo but can't recall having been asked anywhere else anytime recently. I know Best Buy sometimes does this but they don't get my business, same for Walmart.


@jnissel: I don't understand why you would make a big deal out of it. I would willingly show my receipt with no issue. If you try to prevent showing it, they may detain you and call the police just because you were not willing to show it. Why waste everyone's time?


@jnissel: Your behavior sounds confrontational and for no good reason. When you walk in the door you imply that you will abide by the policy of that store. If their policy bothers you, shop somewhere else. Our local Fry's stops everyone...yes, it's a little annoying but it's their policy. I can think of no purpose of fighting with them about it. It's my choice to shop there. Yay for America!


@hackman2007: I am not making a big deal out of it. A big deal would be me yelling and screaming at the person who asked. I will not do that. I am just saying no. What is so terrible about that?


@tarasadies: I am being neither rude or elitist. It is my right to say no. I'm not breaking any laws by refusing. I'm not confronting the worker in any negative way. What is wrong with what I am doing.


@jnissel: If I were the door greeter (which I am not one and have never been so no idea what they look for), I would definitely want to detain you. Saying "no" is kind of weird and makes you seem a little defensive/suspicious. It takes 5 seconds to show the receipt. Show them the receipt and get out the door. Then again, I have only been asked to show my receipt like 3-4 times and that was only when I carried things out without a bag.


@ohcheri: As I said before if it is store policy it should be prominently posted. In fact the law requires it.

It is no different than when I go into a store that has a sign saying I must check my bag(s) at the counter. I have no problem with that. I do it because it is posted and it is required by everyone coming into that store who has bags.


i don't understand why you wouldn't show it.. I mean do you show your ticket at a movie theatre? Do you show a receipt for a drive up and pick up place? Whats the big deal..just show the receipt.. i agree big box stores like target and walmart want to prevent people from just walking out with their stuff for free.. I mean you probably got an in door and an out door 4 across.easy for people to walk out of..


@hackman2007: As I said before if they want to detain me I would wait there for the police to get there. The store better be right.

How is exercising my right to refuse making me look suspicious?

I will grant you one thing. If I had something that couldn't fit into a bag I would show the receipt for it if someone asked me.


@jnissel: Well, since you refused to show them the receipt they have probable cause to assume you have something you did not pay for. Not only is this wasting police time, it is wasting the store's time as well. I'm not sure if you have talked to an attorney about this, but I doubt you would get anywhere with the refusal to show them the receipt.

And unless you are guilty, refusing to show something that simple is just suspicious.


@wnyx585am: I'm not asked that often either, but it's the principle not of the thing.


@jnissel: I think you may have read my response in the incorrect tone - I was more or less defending you and the right to or not adhere to frivolous rules. I completely understood that you didn't give an attitude but you choose to decline(which is your right - there are no stores around here that I know of that advertises that they must have your receipt checked.)

Fact of the mater is that people are going to steal. A door receipt checker is a $7.50/hr casual deterrent. It's for show but there is that aspiring mall cop who will take his job a little to seriously. I, personally, don't see the issue either.


I see both sides of the argument.

Saying no: This is understood because it is unlawful for the retailer to ask you to show the receipt when they do not have the policy posted. Some could see a potential "snowballing effect" with retailers creating other unwritten policies.

Showing them the receipt: It only takes a few seconds of my life, and has never been an issue when it does happen. It also discourages shoplifters, thereby (supposedly) lowering costs of merchandise for the paying consumer.

I have always shown my receipt when asked, but that is because the person asking has always been polite and appreciative. If I had someone demand (rather than ask), I'd ignore them and walk right past. They do not have the legal right to force me to show it, and I will certainly refuse (except Costco, etc.).


No you can't see my receipt. (unless I have agreed to do so prior to my purchase (costco, Sams club, etc..))

I'm tired of being treated like a criminal. If you think I stole something call the police.

Also don't care what your policies are... the law trumps your policies.


@happyknappybeard: I did misread the part of what you said about an attitude. I am sorry for that.


My experience is that I am only asked when I am leaving with stuff that isn't in plastic bags (every time at BJ's and occasionally at WalMart if it is big stuff not in a bag).

Those plastic bags are a great tool for internal control. It is assumed that if your stuff is in plastic bags, you paid for it (I bet employees would get suspicious if they saw shoppers putting stuff directly into bags from the shelf). I bet they just want to see your receipt - not really read it. In those situations, you can probably just hold it up as you walk, just to prove you have one. Other than that, my advice would be to just ignore the request and keep walking rather than saying 'no.' They can't prove you heard them but saying 'no' seems to me to suggest something fishy is going on...


@benyust2: I never thought of it that way. No more "No thanks." from me. I'll just ignore them.


@hackman2007: I am not willing to let them take away my right to say no.


@hackman2007: Them asking for my receipt is saying they believe I took something without paying for it. If that's the way they feel let them call the police. If the store has proof, I'll go with the police calmly and quietly. If the store doesn't have proof they are in hot water.

The stores all have security cameras at the checkout area, in addition to cameras in other areas, so it would be easy to see if I took something or not.


@happyknappybeard: One of the issues is giving up your rights. It may be small but the more you give up the more you will lose.


The Costco membership agreement (contract) contains an unconditional consent to search, so they can detain you and search your belongings in the aisles if they want to.

Best buy does not.

Stopping you from leaving a store is the tort false imprisonment. (many people think receipt checking is a 4th amendment issue, but because the receipt checkers are not agents of the state.. 4th amendment protections do not apply)

The exception to a false imprisonment tort claim is for the shopkeeper to have "reasonable belief" that you are shoplifting.

To have "reasonable belief" shopkeepers must actually see someone take an item and exit the store without paying for it before they attempt to confront the suspected thief.

[I am not a lawyer.. but I'm married to one]


@spacezorro: Thanks. I hope this explains it to everyone's satisfaction.


@ohcheri: said "Yay for America!"

Yes I agree "Yay for America!". The same America that allows people to shop wherever they want also allows us to ignore the situations we are talking about.


I show my receipt when asked. Whether it's posted or not. Not worth making an issue out of it to me. I pick my battles; this is definitely not one of them. A minor annoyance at times, but not worthy of even a skirmish.


every retail i have ever walked into has had posted in the front door "we reserve the right to search...". yes, it is usually off to a side where it's not as noticable, but it is there. even at walmart.


It sounds like you're simply being passive aggressively confrontational. ANy store has the right to check for shoplifters. The policy does't need to be posted. It's understood. If you have an item in your cart that is commonly stolen, they're going to check. Show your receipt. Stop being "that guy."


@jnissel: I don't think we're going to sway public opinion here, but I agree with you.

If you activate the door alarm as you exit, sure - at least in my area - a retailer may then detain you for a reasonable amount of time while that's sorted out, but polite refusal during a random receipt check is absolutely NOT probable cause to detain for shoplifting.


@jsoko: I don't even have to look at it to be able to answer NO!. If a police officer asked me for ID I would show it to him. Are you sure you're not that person?


@thumperchick: We usually agree on things but I can't agree with you on this. They have to have more of a reason, legally, than the item is commonly stolen in order to stop me. If I must comply with what the law states so must the stores.


@chris12345: said "I don't think we're going to sway public opinion here, but I agree with you."

I don't think so either Chris. I believe that many people here are looking at it emotionally instead of from a legal view.

Thanks for sharing my viewpoint even though it seems to be unpopular.


@jnissel: Why would you? The guy in the video is obeying the law and exercising his right to refuse search. The police in the video have no reason to ask for ID just for open carrying. Sounds just like you refusing to show a receipt.


@moosezilla: As spacezorro posted there MUST be a reasonable belief for them to be able to stop and detain you. They cannot stop just anyone, there must be a valid reason. The courts have ruled that way numerous times.


When I worked in retail, albeit laws may have changed (NY state), it was actually not legal to detain any person not literally caught in the act of shoplifting within reason, i.e. seeing them stuff an item into their jacket or visibly see them leave without paying, even if they set off the door alarm. You couldn't force anyone to show a receipt nor force them to turn out their bulging pockets.

Still, what in the world is your problem with showing your receipt? That is the right you're concerned with losing? In a world like today? To be honest, it seems like you're taking an awfully lazy approach to maintaining your consumer rights.


@jsoko: I decided to view the video. It was longer than I expected but I watched the entire thing. My views:

I have some mixed feeling about it. I agree with the person who didn't want to show his ID and was not legally required to do so. I also understand the police officer wanting to know if he was dealing with a felon. But, and this is a big but, unless the man fit the description of someone the police were looking for he was within his rights to refuse to show ID. The fact that the officers allowed him to leave proves he was not required to show it.

In this situation the police were wrong and they knew it.

Given the situation, if it were me and I was 100% sure I knew the law, I would have also refused. Like the person in the video I would have remained non-confrontational. If they decided to arrest me, well that's what attorneys are for.


@meh3884: I am concerned with losing any of my rights be they big or small.


@jnissel: So is it really your right to say 'No' you're concerned with...or your right to walk out of a store without showing a receipt? In the realm of "rights" what freedom does this actually grant you? What freedom would you be denied if you were forced to show your receipt?

Ever heard of the phrase, what was it...."Pick your battles"?

Why don't you focus your efforts on the legality of corporate monopolies and the right to free markets they deny us? You know, something perhaps worth fighting for.


@jnissel: I appreciate you looking at the link... finally. And I understand why you do what you do. Just seems like you are giving someone hell that they don't deserve. Where the cops are, simply put, abusing their rights.

Someone said earlier that refusing to show was giving them "probable cause"... and all I do is laugh at how incorrect that statement is.


@meh3884: If you knew me you wouldn't have asked those questions. You'd know how much I have been involved in legally fighting those companies. Not fighting them directly but from within organizations.

Let me ask you something. Am I supposed to only fight the battles you feel should be fought? Am I not allowed to fight against anything you don't feel is important? You say I should pick my battles when in fact it seems you want to pick them for me.