I'm working the register, and it was about an hour away from closing time so I had already started sweeping up to help the closing process. A customer approached me from the entrance holding one of our bags in hand (I'll be me and BC for Busy Customer)
BC: Where do I make returns?
Me: Oh I can take you on the register here! I start to unpack BC's items and I ask if they have their receipt, which they hand me
BC: Can we hurry things along? I do have a plane to catch
I notice on BC's receipt that the items were purchased at another location that is in a bordering state. This bordering state has a 2% higher sales tax and our system will only refund the current state's tax. Sometimes, customers do not like this so I try to look when I first see the receipt.
Me: it looks like these items have been purchased in x and we will take these items but we will only give x sales tax back, not the x
BC: What? Why?
Me It's just the way that our system and the law works
BC: But I paid for all of these items already! I want all of my money back. What you're doing is illegal, I want to speak to the manager. I have to catch a plane and I can't take these items with me.
Awesome! I was hoping this meant that they were about to leave, but no, of course not. My manager explains the differences in sales tax and tells them that there is nothing we can do, but they do not take this as correct. My manager then offers to call our store manager to see how they would handle this. My store manager says to process the return as normal, figure how much the 2% more tax would be, then give the customer the difference.
My manager takes over the transaction while I watch. When the return is over, our screen shows us the subtotal, how much tax is, and the total. I can see that my manager is struggling to figure the new tax, but I don't want to overstep her in front of a customer so I don't offer any help. I eventually do tell her which figures to subtract for the difference, but BC is not satisfied with this answer and they pull out pen and paper and do the math by hand. Several minutes later they say that the amount is correct.
This customer was in the store for a total of forty minutes to get this extra tax. And how much of a difference was the tax? The difference was $1.25