CASE issues second warning on Triple Lifestyle Marketing after receiving spike in complaints

SINGAPORE: The Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) issued a second warning against Triple Lifestyle Marketing, a direct seller selling alkaline water systems, on Wednesday (April 6th) after an increase in complaints.

He previously issued an alert on February 23 last year against the company following complaints of misleading claims.

CASE has since referred Triple Lifestyle Marketing to the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCS) for investigations under the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act.

He also advised consumers who have contract disputes with the company to contact CASE for help.

Triple Lifestyle Marketing sells long-term maintenance service packages for alkaline water systems through door-to-door sales. Customers can choose to pay for the full package of around S$3,000 in advance or in monthly installments.

In return, they will receive a water dispenser, water filtration system and periodic water filter replacements for the duration of the service agreement, CASE said.

“As part of the service agreement, Triple Lifestyle Marketing is also obligated to repair the water dispenser or water filtration system, if defects occur,” he added.

However, between November 1 of last year and March 31 of this year, CASE received 139 consumer complaints against Triple Lifestyle Marketing.

Most of the complaints involved instances where consumers alleged that the company failed to respond to repeated attempts to contact them to arrange service requests for replacement water filters or repair of faulty products or failed to not shown to appointments.

“According to some consumers, Triple Lifestyle Marketing did not provide replacements after returning defective products,” CASE said.

“This despite representations from Triple Lifestyle Marketing during the sales process that they would repair water dispensers or water filtration systems if faulty.”

Consumers also noted that Triple Lifestyle Marketing made other misleading claims during the sales process.

“For example, consumers alleged that Triple Lifestyle Marketing told them they could pay for the plans in installments, but then charged them the full amount up front,” CASE said.

A few other customers complained that they received used water dispensers or water filter replacements.

In response to consumer complaints, a warning letter was sent to Triple Lifestyle Marketing in July 2020.

It also required the company to enter into a voluntary compliance agreement under the Consumer Protection Act (Fair Trading Act) to end its unfair practices and compensate affected consumers.

CASE noted that Triple Lifestyle Marketing did not sign the agreement.

It has since referred the company to Singapore’s Competition and Consumer Commission for investigation under the law.

CASE advised consumers to do research online to check product quality and company track record before making a purchase.

He also encouraged consumers to patronize direct selling companies accredited under the joint CaseTrust-Direct Selling Association of Singapore accreditation program.

These companies give consumers the right to cancel a contract within seven days without penalty, and also offer a full refund if payment has already been made.

CNA has contacted Triple Lifestyle Marketing for comment.

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