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Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 25358
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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I purchased a car on hp 4 months ago. I had the car for less

Resolved Question:

I purchased a car on hp 4 months ago. I had the car for less than a day when the cam belt slipped and damaged 2 exhaust valves. It took 6.5 weeks to repair and the dealer made a claim on MY warranty without my knowledge. After running the car in for 4 weeks, a subaru dealer did the rebuild service and said that the head gasket had gone. That was 6 weeks ago, and still repairs have not been carried out. The hp company have agreed to pay for a hire car meanwhile. The dealer supposedly agreed with hp company to take responsibility for current repair, but I have just found out that he is waiting to see if warrenty company will cover the cost. This appears to mean that he AGAIN is claiming on my cover. What can I do. XXXXX XXXXX
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 2 years ago.

Joshua :

Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practicing lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.

Joshua :

May I clarify regarding the warranty is this a manufacturers warranty or a private policy you have paid for please?

Customer:

I took out a private warranty for 15 months. I could not make any claim within the first 30 days, but the dealer claimed on the 30th day without my knowledge.

Joshua :

Thanks. This was paid for by you?

Joshua :

Do the claims increase your premium in any way or otherwise adversely impact you?

Customer:

As an extra, yes, paid directly to the dealer. Also when the dealer claimed, he informed the warranty company that he had paid for certain parts. These were also paid by me to the value of £357. This was for a new cam belt which I requested for my own peace of mind.

Customer:

No sure on recriminations regarding future claims, but should the same fault return, perhaps they would not cover a second time.

Customer:

I had only had the vehicle less than 24 hours, so surely the dealer had the responsibility.

Joshua :

Thanks. If the warranty is a private contract between you and an insurance company then the dealer has no direct rights under the warranty unless the policy document gives rights to third parties. You do not have to authorise claims under the same and can contact the warranty provider to advise accordingly though if there is no impact on your premium then there is no particular reason necessarily not to authorise the same.

Customer:

General feeling on the head gasket is that it stems from initial fault or the repair carried out, and not a 'second incident'

Joshua :

As you will be aware. the position here is that you have two differing sets of rights. The first set of rights you have under any warranty from the manufacturer or third party provider however you have a another set of rights by virtue of your contract with the dealer from whom you purchased the car. This set of rights are much more extensive as terms are implied into your contract by virtue of the Sale of Goods Act that the car must be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose purpose and as described. During the first six months, any faults are automatically assumed to be inherent as opposed to having been caused by damage or otherwise under the provisions of the Sale and Supply of Goods to Consumers Regulations 2002. After the first six months, the burden of proof switches to you to show that any faults are inherent as opposed to having been caused by damage.

Joshua :

The Sale of Goods Act gives you the right to reject a car if it is faulty but that right only exists for a short period - little more than a week so clearly you are well out of time in this respect but you still have rights under the above legislation. Under these rights you can insist upon a repair or replacement at the dealer's discretion. You are required to give the dealer reasonable opportunity to repair. There is no specific prescribed number of times that you must must not allow them the opportunity to repair the car however if they have failed to repair the same more than two-three times or refuse to repair the vehicle this would usually be held to be satisfactory opportunity to do so and you would be within your rights to request a refund or replacement with a vehicle of equivalent spec and age less an appropriate amount to compensate you for your use of the car.

Joshua :

The dealer is obviously making claims under the warranty in order to save himself the cost of the works himself which is likely liable to carry out under the above rights however you can oppose such claims under the warranty if you wish subject as above.

Customer:

Yes I am aware of the sale of goods act, but in this situation where I have only had the use of the vehicle for 4 weeks out of 4 months. Would I be in order to start a legal claim and if so, to whom. The dealer or the hp company, and with regard to delays in repair, what can I do about that?

Joshua :

In terms of how you may consider proceeding. You may wish to write to the original garage inviting them to consider a paying for the cost of the repairs or alternatively a replacement or refund as above - if you have already done this however have limited your contact to telephone calls to date consider putting something in writing so there is a record of your contact, referring to previous telephone calls if appropriate. If they do not respond or you are not satisfied with their response then you can consider writing to them again advising that if they do not reply with their substantive proposals within 7 days of the date of your letter you will have little option but to issue proceedings against them in the county court for recovery of the purchase price as they have failed to avail themselves of the opportunity to repair the car within a reasonable time.

Customer:

I have had very little contact with the dealer, as he was 'annoyed' that I had discovered his deception,

Joshua :

Based on what you say the dealer is not attending to repairs within a reasonable period and he has no rights under the warranty directly as above. His obligations are towards you and are not subject to the warranty paying out. He is clearly trying to insulate himself from his legal liabilities which on the one hand is understandable but from your perspective on the basis of the delay if no other is unreasonable and amounts to a breach of contract under the above legislation

Joshua :

Accordingly you may consider proceedings as above.

Joshua :

If you decide to issue proceedings for breach of contract as above the simplest way to do this is by using the moneyclaim online court service.

Joshua :

https://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/web/mcol/welcome

Customer:

and thrust the keys into my hand after the first round of repair, and walked off, which is when I involved the hp company which used the dealer as an agent. They have been making all contact since then. I have kept all contact details with them

Joshua :

The Consumer Credit Act makes the hire purchase company jointly liable with the dealer and if you decide to issue proceedings you can join in the HP company as a joint defendant.

Joshua :

It may be prudent (though not a requirement) to copy in the HP company on any correspondence you send to the dealer as they may also intervene anxious to avoid a claim. if they deal with the dealer regularly they may be able to put some additional pressure on him

Joshua :

You have very considerable consumer rights in this respect should you choose to exercise them

Joshua :

Is there anything above I can clarify for you?


Customer:

I was hoping to avoid any legal action, but it appears that I have very little choice in this matter. It has gone on far too long.

Customer:

Thank you for your advice

Joshua :

One will often find that the threat of a county court claim will spur a dealer into action however if it does not one should not be afraid to exercise ones considerable consumer rights. However if at all possible of course litigation would be avoided

Joshua :

A pleasure. If I can assist any further as the situation develops please do no hesitate to let me know.

Customer:

Thank you, again.

Joshua :

Best wishes

Joshua :

If you have no further questions for now I should be very grateful if you would kindly take a moment to rate my service to you today. Your feedback is important to me. If there is anything else I can help with though please reply back to me though.

Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 25358
Experience: LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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