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Ask Alice H Your Own Question

Alice H
Alice H, Solicitor/Partner
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2849
Experience:  Partner in national law firm
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hello I contacted a car leasing company FIRST VEHICLE LEASING

Customer Question

I contacted a car leasing company FIRST VEHICLE LEASING last week via the internet and then spoke to them on the phone. As requested they sent me an e-mail with details of the cost to lease a specific car and the deposit required etc and an administration fee of £180. I responded to the email by stating this was ok and they then called me back requesting I email then copies of my driving license and utility bill. I gave them my debit card number to take the admin fee if I wanted to proceed. I left it at that until the following day as I was on night duty and therefore did not sent this information to them. In the meantime my circumstances changed as my son offered to sell his car to me and this suited us better. I then contacted FIRST VEHICLE LEASING and stated that I did not want to proceed and they stated that NOT ONLY would I lose the admin fee they would take another £320 from my account (£500 in total). I attempted to instruct my bank to stop this but they stated that the money has to be taken first and then they could seek to get it back, however I spoke to them today and now they are stating they cannot do anything. I have looked at the email sent from FIRST VEHICLE LEASING and it does say that cancelling an order for a car would incur in total a £500 cancellation fee (however they did not tell me this directly) but I had not at any stage made a definite order, signed anything or sent copies of any of my documents. To add insult to injury I have today received a receipt from them for an administration fee of £416.67 plus £83.33 vat totalling £500, with a thank you added. Please advise if I have a case to get my money back. I am not in a position to lose £500. Surely there must be a reasonable "cooling off period" to reasonably allow people to rethink or change their minds. As stated I contacted them well within 24hrs.

Many thanks

Dave Dent
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Hello and welcome to Just Answer.

My name is Alex and I'm happy to help with your question today.

I can understand your frustration but as a matter of law a contract was concluded when you agreed to lease a car and gave them your debit card for payment. If you then decide to withdraw from that agreement the other party is entitled to seek compensation.

Unfortunately cancellation rights or 'cooling off' period which are set out in the Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 do not apply to car hire/leasing arrangements.

I'm sorry if this is really disappointing but I have a duty to give you independent and objective advice on the law.


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