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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69790
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I have paid for a garden makeover firm to tidy up my garden.

Customer Question

I have paid for a garden makeover firm to tidy up my garden. The company have not carried out the work.How do I get a refund of the money paid to them by debit card?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.

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

Why have they not done it?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I was not satisfied with the attitude of the operative the firm sent to do the garden maintenance ,no work was done and he returned to base, I then contacted the manager in charge ,told him I no longer wanted their services and requested a refund of the money I had paid in advance for the work to be done.He point blank told me money would not be refunded.I then said I would. Take the matter further. He curtly said -you do that -and put the phone down on me without giving me a chance to reply to him.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
OK. Thats a problem.

Did you agree that satisfaction was guaranteed?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I understood from their web site that work would be carried out well but had no guarantee that any operative sent would be not satisfactory to me .The operative did not bring the weed killer I had already paid for and his manner towards me was dismissive . I got the impression that his mindset towards me was - I am right - you as the customer are wrong - the very reverse of good customer /business practise.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thanks.

Does that mean you didn't agree that 'satisfaction was guaranteed'?

Did you use those specific words when you discussed this?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
The guarantee of satisfaction was not verbally discussed but on viewing the company's web site prior to ordering and paying for work required I looked at all the good reviews by previous customers of work done for them and also saw pictures of garden maintenance and clearance completed by them in the past. I assumed from this that work would be carried out satisfactorily. My dispute with the company is primarily with the operative sent to do the work. Surely if the work that I already had paid for has not been done I must be entitled to a refund of money paid to them. Otherwise the firm keeps my money at no cost to them.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Ok. I understand you want to tell me everything but what I need to know is this.

Does the website actually use the words 'satisfaction guaranteed'? It should really be a simple yes or no.

It will change everything.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
When I viewed their web site I did not notice if it quoted Satisfaction Guaranteed.Their. Web site is www.garden-line.co.uk.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thanks.

It doesn't say anything about satisfaction guaranteed. It should be fairly prominent on the site if you wanted to rely on as the terms and conditions on the site are arguably not part of the verbal contract anyway.

Its a mixed bag of news really.

The reason that you have for terminating this contract is not a valid one I'm afraid. At least, obviously his attitude may well have amounted to poor customer services and that is bad business but it doesn't amount to a repudiatory breach of your contract allowing you to cancel.

However, cancel you have and you are in breach of contract I'm afraid.

They do only have a claim for the sum of their loss though. They cannot make you have the work done. The loss here is not going to be the sum of the contract. They would probably get something for administration costs, the visit of their representation and lost profits.

This is always supposing they bother to contest this. It might be that they do not. Its likely to be a small claims court sum and its not worth the manpower involved in contesting a claim.

You need to send them a letter before action setting out that you wish to be refunded within 28 days as you do not believe the full sum represents their loss. Make clear that in default you will sue.

If they do not respond then issue here

www.moneyclaim.gov.uk

Can I clarify anything for you?

Jo
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69790
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Can I post a critical review on their web site without there being adverse repercussions to me ?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
As long as you only complain truthfully.

Obviously they won't like it and they might make threats arising from it but if what you say is true then they will fail at court.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
On reflection, as I am probably not able to obtain a refund of money paid , can I insist the company fulfill their obligation to do the work I contracted with them. I received their invoice for. work contracted yesterday 7/4/14. At no time during my communication with their head office did I say I wanted the work contracted by them cancelled ,only that I wanted a refund of monies paid by me to them.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Yes, you can do that.

You are entitled to have the work done.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
How do you suggest I contact their office to insist on work contracted to be performed. By letter,E mail , or telephone ? In addition how would you suggest I word my request to them?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
I would not get involved in any conversation over the phone.

An email is fine although following up in letter would be a good idea.

Just write to them giving them 28 days to complete the work and make clear that in defaults you will sue

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