‘Amazon won’t cancel a £30 monthly charge so I’m taking it to court’

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Dear Katie,

A couple of years ago I opened an Amazon seller account through which I sold a few portable rotisserie barbecue sets I designed and made to make some extra cash. 

I used the account only briefly and tried to cancel, but wasn’t able to. It continued to charge me a monthly fee of £30.

I tried to get it cancelled by emailing and phoning Amazon, but to no avail. It just kept telling me to go into my account and cancel it from there. But I couldn’t access my account because the system said my account didn’t exist. Talk about a catch-22 situation.

Last December I sent a recorded delivery letter to Amazon asking it to stop, but still the charges continued. 

Eventually I decided the only way to get its attention was via the small claims court, so I lodged a claim. 

Now it is communicating with me via a major corporate law firm. I’m struggling to believe the matter has escalated to this point. I feel like a guest at the Amazon version of the mad hatter’s tea party.

– KC, Cheshire


Dear Reader,

You’re 75 and retired and your only income other than selling a few rotisserie sets is your state pension, so you really couldn’t afford to keep paying £30 a month for nothing. 

As far as I can see, despite being unable to log into your account and cancel it in the usual way, you made every reasonable effort to contact Amazon through other means to sort this out.

Yet still it wasn’t able to stop the charges. Instead, it allowed this situation, which could easily have been resolved in the space of five minutes, to progress to the small claims court. 

What an utterly ludicrous waste of everyone’s time and money this was – a mad hatter’s tea party indeed. 

It is also a disgraceful indictment of Amazon’s customer services operation, hinting at what a shambolic mess may well be going on behind the scenes there.

Following my involvement, Amazon has stood down its team of lawyers and finally cancelled your account. 

It has refunded £185 in payments and paid you a £50 goodwill gesture on top. 

This really was the least it could do, all things considered. It still hasn’t fully explained why your calls, emails and the recorded delivery letter fell on deaf ears. Amazon has some serious improving to do.

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