Several Target, Walmart, dollar stores fined for overcharging customers in Charlotte area

CHARLOTTE — The state of North Carolina fined several Charlotte-area stores because prices at the register were more than those for products on the shelves.

The State Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said it happened in the second quarter of 2022. The agency stated that 61 North Carolina stores were ordered to pay fines for price-scanning errors in 32 counties.

The stores included:

  • Dollar Generals on The Plaza, Albemarle Road and South Boulevard in Charlotte
  • Target near Northlake Mall in Charlotte
  • Walmarts on Pineville-Matthews Road, North Tryon Street and Wilkinson Boulevard in Charlotte, and on Bryton Town Center Drive in Huntersville

Other stores that were fined are in Catawba, Iredell, Rowan, Stanly, Union and Watauga counties.

“Our Standards Division continues to see a significant increase in stores with price scanner errors, as many stores continue to deal with staffing shortages. Overcharges cost consumers so we remain vigilant in inspecting stores in order to protect consumers,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “It is always a good practice for consumers to check their receipts as well as the price on the shelf to make sure that they are paying the correct amount and alert managers if they are not correct.”

In July, several Dollar General and Walmart stores in Iredell and Union counties were accused of the same.

Pay attention at checkout

Shopper Tonia Bost said she recently was charged more at checkout because of a pricing error.

“You get up there and then you know the bill is much higher,” she told Channel 9. “Like, what happened here?”

State inspector Chad Parker said consistent rising prices and staffing shortages could cause confusion.

He believes that fines will encourage stores to verify prices on shelves with the price at checkout.

“That gets their attention and corporate reaches out to us,” said Parker, with the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

Experts said to take photos of the stickers on store shelves and then compare those prices at the register or on the receipt when you get home.

If you catch the error at the store, ask for a price adjustment.

If that happens repeatedly, you may want to call for an inspection.

“Nobody likes to be overcharged and you know most people are having a hard time right now, paying these inflated prices,” Parker said.

The key is to pay attention, or you’ll end up paying more at the counter.

Consumers, who want to file a complaint about scanner errors, can call the Standards Division at 984-236-4750.

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