Relief as Daughter’s Pounds 4k iTunes Charge is Refunded

Apple has agreed to refund a man whose eight- year-old daughter unwittingly ran up almost Pounds 4,000 on his iTunes account.

Lee Neale, of Peasedown St John, was shocked when he became aware of the huge bill earlier this month after finding out his daughter Lily knew his password and had bought more than 100 apps – including 74 in just six days this month.

What he didn’t realise was that his daughter had memorised the password when he had downloaded free games for her and would put it in whenever it was requested.

He immediately contacted Apple to explain what had happened and asked for his money back.

But he was met with a reply from an iTunes store senior advisor stating “according to the iTunes Store Terms of Sale, all purchases made on the iTunes Store are final”.

The e-mail added: “We apologise for any inconvenience this situation may have caused you.”

It was at that point the 43-year-old aerospace designer found himself in a position where he was having to sell his car and two off-road motorbikes – one of which was his son’s – to recoup the lost money.

He contacted the media primarily to warn other parents about the perils of allowing children to play games on the iPad but Mr Neale said shortly after his story appeared in the press he received a phone call from an Apple representative saying his case was being looked into again.

Not long after that Mr Neale was told that, after a thorough investigation, he would on this occasion be refunded the full amount.

“Shortly after the story had been published, iTunes called me to say they will be refunding the money I have lost and apologised for closing the case so early,” he said.

Mr Neale’s daughter had run up the money playing numerous games including Campus Life, My Horse, Hay Day and Smurf’s Village.

Although games are initially free there are numerous in-game add- ons that can be bought in the form of jewels, coins or upgrades.

About the Author

Ivan Castilho is a citizen of the world; CEO at Mindfield Digital and Executive Director at AppleMagazine, Techlife News and eNews Magazine. Ivan's been an avid Apple user and consumer since 2008, with a major in Marketing and extensive experience in strategic management and consulting for tech companies.
Hobbies: Arts, Photography, Writing, Design and full-time father to a beautiful little girl.