(KMOV) -- Missouri Attorney Chris Koster has filed a civil lawsuit against Walgreens on claims the company engages in misleading marketing practices to lure customers into purchasing products.
The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in Jackson Court, alleges the retail company committed a pattern of advertising lower prices on price tags, but then charged more to customers at checkout.
According to Koster, his office made undercover visits to eight randomly chosen Walgreens locations in St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield, Jefferson City and Osage Beach in June and July.
The attorney general’s office said during the visits investigators purchased various items and discovered nearly all the stores charged more for certain items at checkout than the price listed on the display tag. Koster’s office said it determined nearly 21 percent of the 205 purchased products were being overcharged.
The lawsuit claims Walgreens’ rewards membership program promises savings at the register, but investigators did not always get the price reductions. It also alleges sale display tags were often left on the shelves past their expiration dates, resulting in the sale not being recognized.
“Consumers have a right to expect the price they will pay at the register is the same as the price displayed on the shelf,” Koster said. “Consumers should not have to double-check the price tags or signage and compare them to the prices charged at the register.”
The lawsuit seeks an injunction prohibiting the retail chain from engaging in the alleged deceptive pricing.
Koster asks anyone who has incurred or observed such deceptive practices to call his office at (800) – 392-8222.