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What Are Your Rights When Your Concert Is Postponed or Canceled?

By Lisa M. Schaffer, Esq. | Last updated on

When a concert is postponed or canceled, the news can hit hard. Sometimes the ticket holder doesn't have the luxury of abundant free time, and can't make the new date. Other times, the purchase price was a lot of money, and the ticket holder really needs that money refunded immediately rather than waiting to resell a postponed concert for a date still to be determined? What are your rights when a concert is canceled or postponed? It depends on who you bought the ticket from, and the decisions of the artist, team, venue, or promoter.

Canceled Concerts Lead to Refunds

If your concert was canceled, Ticketmaster will directly alert the buyer and refund the purchase. Great! But what if you didn't purchase the ticket directly from Ticketmaster? StubHub will issue a full refund for any event cancelled. In case you are wondering, if you paid a premium for those StubHub tickets, don't worry. StubHub cancels the transaction, and so you are "refunded" your purchase price, even if that was far higher than the face value. If the tickets were purchased from TickPick, the company will refund tickets received within 15 days of TickPick notifying the buyer that the tickets are eligible for a refund.

Postponed or Rescheduled Events -- a Long and Winding Road

When a show doesn't go on as planned, it is canceled only about 5% of the time; 95% of the time it is postponed or rescheduled. If your concert was postponed or rescheduled, things get a lot messier.

Sometimes, the dates can be almost a year later or more. Or worse, in the case of Drake's show in Toronto, Canada, he rescheduled twice. Ticketmaster will notify the ticket purchaser of the new date, if and when it exists, since artists can keep the rescheduled date open-ended.

However, "the decision to refund the ticket price is in the hands of the artist, team, venue or promoter." At least you have a chance of a refund. However, if the ticket was purchased from a ticket broker, such as StubHub or TickPick, you're on your own, of sorts. Neither will offer refunds for postponed shows. StubHub recommends you use their site to try to re-sell your ticket. How thoughtful of them.

If you bought tickets to a concert that has been postponed indefinitely, and you feel this is unfair, contact a consumer rights attorney. Though things do happen to keep concerts from happening, they should be rescheduled within a reasonable time. And if they aren't, to the point of being effectively canceled, you may be entitled to monetary relief.

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