Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.
I am very sorry to hear of the above. For the avoidance of doubt could you confirm it is 2 March 2015 that they were supposed to begin fitting please? If that is correct when was the fitting supposed to have been completed by?
How many opportunities aproximately have you given them to remedy the work to date?
How many additional days beyond what you expected have you taken off work?
Is there any written evidence of your exchanges with the kitchen fitter - e.g. emails or has everything been verbal to date?
Thank you. Finally did you buy online, in store or from a rep visiting your home?
Thanks. 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 kitchen supplier which are usually somewhat limited insofar as a warranty is strictly limited to the terms of the warranty which are often not overly generous if in deed a warranty exists at all. I will leave this here though because of what follows
You have a another set of rights by virtue of your contract with the retailer. 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 kitchen must be fit for purpose, as described and of satisfactory quality and the Supply of Goods and Services Act which provides that the installation work must be of satisfactory quality and carried out with reasonable skill and care and in both cases, must be completed within either the time period agreed or failing which, a reasonable period of time.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 though this is often (though not always) self evident based on the nature of the fault or damage.
You are required to give the retailer reasonable opportunity to repair or replace the kitchen. There is no specific prescribed number of times that you must must allow them the opportunity to do so however if they have failed to repair or replace the same more than two-three times or refuse to repair or replace the same this would usually be held to be satisfactory opportunity to do so and you would then be within your rights to instruct an alternative contractor to quote to remedy the matter by repair or replacement and look to the original supplier for the cost.
in addition, if you can demonstrate that you have had to take additional time off work to allow them access to carry out repairs over and above what was originally envisaged, you can raise a claim for lost income in this respect. It is not possible to claim for lost income for dates that were originally earmarked by you to take off work but rather it is possible to claim for those dates and times over and above those original dates and times.
finally, in respect of the credit agreement, if you do not want the credit agreement, you should consider raising the fact that this was signed not by you and without your authority. You cannot be bound to a credit agreement you did not sign for. However this should be raised as soon as possible if you wish to dispute the same.
in terms of how you may consider proceeding. From now on, it is wise to ensure everything between you and the retailer is in writing or where you have verbal conversations, insurers are followed up in writing confirming what was agreed discussed. You may consider writing to the kitchen company to advise them either that you have given them more than xx opportunities to repair or replace the kitchen and they have failed to do so as a consequence, you consider them to be in breach of contract under the terms implied into your agreement under the supply of goods and services act and either that you are giving them one final opportunity to rectify all outstanding issues (attaching a schedule of issues) within 10 days or you will seek an alternative contractor to carry out the works and look to them for the costs or that you are nnot willing to provide them with any further opportunities to repair or rectify having already provided them with more than three opportunities to do so and as a consequence, you are seeking an alternative contractor as above and will look to them for the costs. In addition, you can consider putting them on notice that you have to date had to take an additional xx days off work to attend additional visits to your property to carry out failed repairs and replacements, and you reserve your position in terms of seeking damages for lost income for those additional days off work.
The above can take the form of an email letter - it is important you can evidence that the email letter was sent
if you decide not to dispute the credit agreement you should also consider notifying the finance provider of the position as the finance provider is jointly liable with the retailer and may decide to take its own action against the retailer on your behalf. If you decide to dispute the credit agreement, obviously you will notify the the finance provider both of the above and the fact that you dispute that you agreed to the finance
if you decide to give them some additional time as above or decide not to having already given them three opportunities or more to rectify, at that stage you can consider sourcing an alternative contractor to provide a quotation for finishing the installation to your reasonable satisfaction. The alternative contractor may or may not be able to complete the installation of the existing kitchen for they may have to install an alternative if it is not possible for an alternative contractor to supply appropriate parts. You must use the most cost effective method to finish the kitchen. if it is possible for the kitchen to be completed by an alternative contractor you can look to the original supplier for the costs of this work. If you are advised that is not possible for an alternative contractor to complete the existing installation, then the may be no alternative but to source an entirely new kitchen which would be acceptable in the circumstances.
In either event, once you have a quotation, ideally from two alternative contractors, you can look to the original installer for the cost of that work together with your claim for lost income. If the retailer refuses to settle, which is a distinct possibility, you can recover monies in the Small Claims Court. The process is straightforward and the simplest way to initiate the same if this is necessary is by using the courts online issuing service (link below):
assuming you are successful, which there is little reason to think you would not be given her strong consumer legislation is, it's possible to recover court fees and any costs associated with attending the hearing and further lost income in doing so - though it is possible to not attend and ask the court to deal with the claim by correspondence if you prefer.
as above, consumer legislation is extremely strong and based upon what you describe, the retailer is in a very vulnerable position legally. Unfortunately, some retailers will remain difficult or simply refuse to cooperate without the threat of small claims action, but will often capitulate before a hearing on receipt of court papers because they know how difficult it is for them to defend such claims and they will incur legal costs in doing so which cannot be reclaimed from you whatever the outcome.
Does the above answer all your questions or is there anything I can clarify or help you with any further?
Do you have any other questions on this or does the above answer everything you needed to know for now?
Is there anything else I can help you with?