Walmart will pay $775,000 to New Jersey to settle allegations it sold expired infant formula and nonprescription drugs in its stores, said state Attorney General Paula T. Dow.
The settlement ends a 2008 lawsuit the state brought against Walmart, Target and Drug Fair for violating New Jersey's consumer fraud law. Target settled with the state in November 2009, paying $375,000. Drug Fair went out of business before it could settle with the state.
Walmart admitted no wrongdoing or liability as part of the settlement .
The state also alleged that the stores listed items for sale at one price, but the items scanned at a higher price at checkout. As part of the settlement, Walmart must put policies in place for regular inspections and monitor the accuracy of its prices. It also agreed to advertising rules, including clearly marking limited-quantity items in its advertising.
"This settlement puts the onus on Wal-Mart to check expiration dates when stocking its shelves, to periodically recheck stocked items, and then remove from sale any infant formula or non-prescription drugs that are past expiration," Attorney General Dow said. "A responsible retailer should do no less and we expect full compliance at Wal-Mart's 54 New Jersey stores."
Walmart spokesman Greg Rossiter said customers depend on the retailer to have prices and products they can trust and Walmart will conduct random checks at its stores to ensure accuracy.
"We're committed to make sure the correct prices are posted and that merchandise is removed well before its expiration date," Rossiter told Consumer Ally.
Walmart and Target aren't the only national retailers to get slapped for selling expired goods and nonprescription drugs. CVS has been chastised by a number of states for selling out-of-date items.
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