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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
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Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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This relates to my right to cancel under Consumer Contracts

Resolved Question:

Hi - this relates to my right to cancel under Consumer Contracts (information, cancellation and additional charges) Regulations 2013.
We entered into an agreement / contract (electronic signature) to purchase furniture which would be made to our specification (fitted wardrobes).
Having received a "free" consultation we were advised that if we wanted to benefit from a discount on offer we had to act quickly as the offer expired on 29 February 2016. We were told that we would need to call and pay the deposit on the 29 February. So as not to miss out on the discount, we called Hammonds on 29 February and paid the deposit of circa £468. Also at that time we were advised of a date that a surveyor would visit the property in order to measure the room to ensure that the specifications were accurate and that the order could be processed. The date offered was 5 March 2016.
Having paid the deposit on the 29 February in order to secure a discount, we received the following day via email the agreement (terms and conditions) to sign (electronically). Later that day (1 March) my wife received a call from Hammonds Furniture advising that the appointment for the surveyor was to be changed and instead of 5 March my wife was offered 14 March. So as not to delay matters further, she agreed.
When I got home from work, we discussed the proposed changed dates and decided that we would cancel the order so we could consider alternative options or even whether to go ahead with fitted furniture (we had just moved into our property).
The contract was signed electronically on the 1 March and I called Hammonds on the 7 March (4 business days later) to cancel the agreement and request a refund of our deposit.
At that time we were directed to Client Relations Manager who basically just refused to refund anything (even though acknowledging that none of the proposed furniture had been prepared or even ordered) and simply cited that Hammonds did not breach any contract.
I followed this up with an email requesting a full refund and received an email 16 days later again refusing to provide a refund and citing the above referenced regulations and the fact that we were purchasing goods made to our specification that we were not subject to any cooling off period (despite the fact that the order had not been processed as the surveyor had not yet been to visit the property and sign off the measurements).
Based on the above, are we entitled to cancel the agreement and request a refund?
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 12 months ago.
How did you pay the deposit? Credit or debit card?
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Visa Debit Card over the telephone
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Do you need anything further from me in order to provide your reply? many thanks
Expert:  F E Smith replied 12 months ago.
It is a pity that you did not pay by Credit Card because then you could have filed a section 75 Consumer Credit Act claim with the Credit Card company who would have refunded you and recouped the money from the merchant.The bank will get involved with refunding debit cards but only if the goods have not been supplied. They will not get involved with disputes which is what you have here.The Consumer Contracts Regulations which replace the Distance Selling regulations in 2014 implemented the Consumer Rights Directive of the EU, into UK. The regulationsWhat information they must give you if you are buying goods without visiting the premises such as online or over the telephone. Amongst that information, are your cancellation rights.Under the old Distance Selling Regulations you had 7 days to cancel from when you received all the paperwork and goods whichever was later. It is now 14 days from the day you receive the goods provided they are not a special order made specifically for you or goods likely deteriorate or software and CDs and suchlike where the seal has been broken.. In respect of services you cannot cancel the service once it has been provided.But, it doesn’t matter what the legislation says, if the shop simply refused to refund you, you have no alternative but to threaten or ultimately issue Small Claims Court proceedings which you can do if you visit this website www.moneyclaim.gov.ukit is not difficult. You must write to the company first and tell them that if they do not refund your deposit you will take them to the Small Claims Court.At that stage they may pay up. It is unlikely they would let it get as far as court even if you issue a small claimCan I help further?Please do not forget to rate the service positive.Best wishesFES
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 8985
Experience: I have been practising for 30 years.
F E Smith and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Many thanks for your email. So even if they did not start any manufacturing of the goods (as their surveyor had even visited the property to measure and see if the proposed goods to be ordered were feasible) they simply can refuse to provide a refund?

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