Phones 4u, one of the UK's largest independent device retailers, collapsed into administration earlier this month, resulting in the immediate closure of its 550 stores across the country, as well as its website. The move came after two of the UK's largest networks - EE and Vodafone - withdrew their sales support from the chain, making it impossible for it to continue operations with so few major carriers still on board.
The closure of Phones 4u was particularly unwelcome for its customers who had already placed pre-orders for Apple's new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. The company initially stated that it would cancel those pre-orders and issue a full refund to customers.
However, as Business Insider reports, the company's administrators, PwC, have now sent an email to those waiting to get their money back, telling them that they shouldn't expect to receive a refund after all. Adding insult to injury, the mass email was also sent with all recipients' email addresses visible.
PwC advises that "customers who have paid using credit cards should contact their credit card company to try and seek resolution to this matter." Unfortunately, if that's not an option, the news isn't good.
Customers can still register an unsecured claim to have their money returned, but there is no guarantee that this effort will be successful. In fact, the administrators warn that "any payment, if made at all, would not be for many months and is likely to be negligible."
To put this another way, if you're hoping to get your money back, join the queue, and don't expect to get much - if any - of it returned to your bank account.