how to get refund form windows 8 returning

I ran into couple of threads in the Microsoft official forums where people are asking for ways to get refund for Windows 8. Some of them were simply not happy with the new Windows 8, some of them got a wrong edition of it and some others did not want to disclose why they want a refund. I have purchased and returned several products which include some software as well but never thought about returning an Operating System. Anyway, it appears that many people are exploring this option and so I thought I will share what I found about the money back policy of Microsoft.

Return your Windows 8 within 45 days and get your money back


Microsoft's North America return policy states that all software and hardware products can be returned to the retailer within 45 days from the date of purchase. Obviously, this include Windows 8 returns as well.

However, the official return policy is bit confusing. They have mentioned products can be returned through the retailer but the return address provided in the page is of Microsoft's Return Center. So, if you purchased Windows 8 from stores like BestBuy, Walmart, Amazon or other retailers, it is not clear whether you can return it to Microsoft for refund.

I tried calling the Return Center but could not speak with anyone since it was not normal office hours. However, the system prompted me to leave a voice message and assured a callback within 1 business day. 

Windows 8 return policy


According to the official return policy of Microsoft, you can get a refund for Windows 8 within 45 days from the date of purchase. However, there are couple of catches in the return policy, that may eliminate many of the users from getting their money back if they choose to give back their Windows 8 license. 

If your Windows 8 is an OEM version, which means it was preloaded with a new computer, you cannot return it to Microsoft for refund. Various computer manufacturers have different policies on refund for the OEM edition of the OS installed on the computer. If you got Windows 8 preinstalled on your computer, you may want to contact the computer manufacturer directly and explore the options for money back. Since computer manufacturers receive the OEM licenses at a very low cost, you may not get the full retail value of Windows 8.

If you received the Windows 8 through volume licensing or subscription, you cannot return the individual Windows 8 license for a refund. In that case, Microsoft recommend you contact the reseller/distributor and discuss the options.

Also, you cannot return Windows 8 if you purchased it online, according to their published return policy. I am bit uncomfortable about this policy since now a days most of the software purchases happen online and if Microsoft does not offer refund for online purchases, that will exclude a bit portion of their consumers. Hopefully, that is just a disclaimer but you can still try to contact the Return center and explore the options.

How to get the refund for your Windows 8


Here are the steps I suggest you to get refund for Windows 8:

1. Read Windows 8 Software License Agreement so that you can answer any queries by the refund specialist.

2. Have your purchase information including your payment receipts ready in front of you.

3. Open your Windows 8 computer and be prepared to refer to it and answer the rep if the computer is in usable condition.

4. Call customer support toll free number.

1-888-673-8624
1-877-673-8889 (TTY Line)

5. Explain your situation and briefly mention why you want a refund. If you just don't like the product, don't hesitate to say that. The return policy does not require you to give a valid reason to return.

If you tried the above steps and like to share your experience, please post it as a comment below.




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