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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70282
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My elderly sister was owed £2,800 in respect of a due

Customer Question

My elderly sister was owed £2,800 in respect of a refund due to her for a mobility scooter that was highly inappropriate for her needs. The seller agreed in a letter dated 9/9/13 to re-imburse her card account from which payment was taken, at a rate of £500 per month starting on 31/10/13. To date only 1 payment has been received. I went to see the seller today and was given some cock and bull story that the payments had been made via "Streamline" a bank card service, but had both gone astray. The seller also tried to tell me that the February payment could not be made as it was year end and all the books were with the auditors - what nonsense.

I have today emailed the seller with the following email

"WITHOUT PREJUDICE

After my visit to your showroom earlier this afternoon, I went back to my sister's house and she confirmed that the credit balance on her nominated account as of 2 February 2014 was only £500 despite the confirmation in your letter to her dated 9th September 2013 that she would be receiving the £2,800 due from yourselves at a rate of £500 per month starting on 30th October 2013.

On reflection it is wholly inappropriate for your company to expect a 79 year old widow to fund your cashflow. Had she bought the mobility scooter on credit terms from yourself, she would undoubtedly have been required to pay fees and/or interest, yet when she is told that she can only have the refund in installments no corresponding interest payment is offered.

In the circumstances, particularly as the promised monthly payments have not been received in accordance with the agreed schedule, please pay the outstanding balance of £2,300 immediately along with an interest payment of 5% on that balance for the period 9th September -- 28th February amounting to £54.19.

My sister looks forward to receiving your payment at the earliest opportunity

Mr David Hylton - brother of Mrs Margaret Messenger."

Please advise what else I can do if my email is ignored or answered in an unsatisfactory manner.

Regards
D Hylton [email protected]
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Hi.

Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

Is she prepared to sue?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Depends on the cost

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

as replied a moment ago - it all depends on the cost

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Thank you.

On what basis did he agreed a refund?

Is the suggestion that the product is faulty?

Or was there a misrepresentation at the time of sale?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

the scooter was totally inappropriate and the seller agreed to take it back after taking an administrative charge. My sister was unable to drive the scooter due to her poor physical condition - it should never have been sold to her in the first place.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Ok.

But forget what the seller has agreed. That cannot necessarily be enforced in court.

Why should it not have been sold? What exactly was said that was untrue?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The refund and payment schedule that was agreed is in writing from the seller.


 


The mobility scooter is an electric powered vehicle with the physical demands of a small car, i.e. the need to turn one's body to see what is around the vehicle, the need to react quickly to situations, the need to be aware of pedestrians etc. My sister was/is totally incapable physically of reacting to this type of situation. She is unable to open a tin of peas with a tin-opener an example of how her physical frailty is too bad for her to consider driving any vehicle, no matter how small.


 


She was unable to park it in her garage, connect the electric lead to charge the vehicle , get out of the vehicle with her walking stick and go back to the house via a short path in under 90 minutes in the dry. It was impossible for her to do that in the wet. Despite my severe mis-givings about the original purchase, her pride over ruled her head and she decided to buy it. She realised within one month it was a mistake, and the seller agreed to take it back.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
It makes no difference.

Would it be possible to give me the information I asked for?

I realise this was a bad purchase for her but that is not a claim of itself.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Forget it

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Sorry?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The seller has recognised the refund is due by making the first repayment in accordance with their letter dated 9/9/13. The seller has now defaulted on the agreed repayment schedule, that is the nub of the issue, why do we need to go over the reasons for the refund in the first place??

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Its not the nub of the issue.

The fact that the seller was willing to make this offer doesn't mean you can enforce it in court.

Unless you have an actual claim the fact of the agreement is completely unenforceable in court and elsewhere.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ok, there is no need to continue this discussion then as the equipment was in full working order and a vulnerable old lady has been taken to the cleaners by a sharp seller. Bye

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Well, thats not necessarily right.

But you will need to give me the information I asked for.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

You asked the question "why should it not have been sold, what was said that was untrue"


 


I have told you quite clearly why it should not have been sold - the seller should have been able to see that the physical condition of my sister was so poor that she would clearly have been a danger to herself and others. She had already turned over a 3 wheel mobility scooter when driving along a pavement and for some reason the seller persuaded her that a (heavier) 4 wheel vehicle would be ok.


 


I have no idea what would have been said that was untrue as I wasn't there (pity) and my sister's memory is not to be relied on.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
That could be a problem.

The fact that he sold her something that probably wasn't the product for her is not actionable per se.

It may be unlawful if, for example, he made some statement that it would be suitable for her. That might amount to misrepresentation and that would give rise to a claim.

Clearly they are worried about something because they have made offers so there probably is some basis for a claim.

Its not just untrue statements. Also, misleading statements are included.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ok, there does not seem much point in pursuing this discussion as there is no verifiable record of any conversation or dependable statement from my sister that could be used. Good bye

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Ok.

Good luck.
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

One blindingly obvious fact that I have not mentioned is that the mobility scooter is back with the seller, which they no doubt have resold/will resell.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
In that case they have provided no consideration for the contract so there is a claim in full.

They cannot take the product back and not pay.