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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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My wife agreed to purchase a second hand car from a dealer.

Resolved Question:

My wife agreed to purchase a second hand car from a dealer. A deposit was paid and finance agreed. Because of what she had read the day before collection as to the saftey of the car she changed her mind. The dealer says its now her car and she must collect it from the garage. What rights does she have to change her mind and not collect the car. BT
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I have made a payment of £38.00 - I do not want a trial - I would like an answer to my question or a refund of my fee please
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Did your wife sign a contract before purchasing the car?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
she signed some paperwork but says she is not sure what it was - but i suspect it was a contract to purchase the car
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Hi there. Thank you for your request for a phone call. I am unable to talk at the moment but I will review the relevant information and laws and get back to you as soon as I can. Please do not respond to this message after you have provided the information as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46798
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Hi there, a consumer’s rights in this situation are mainly determined by the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013. These Regulations apply to contracts for sales conducted on the trader’s business premises, off the trader’s premises (e.g. at the consumer’s home) and at a distance (e.g. online).

All types of transactions are subject to the requirement by the trader to issue the consumer with specific pre-contractual information, as long as it is not a contract entered off the trader’s premises for a value of less than £42. If this information is not provided then the consumer would not be bound by the contract and it can also be a fineable offence for the trader. Details of the required information can be found here:

· Contracts entered on the trader’s premises - http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2013/3134/schedule/1/made

The above cancellation periods may be extended by up to 12 months if the trader has failed to issue the consumer with notice of their right to cancel. Once that information has been provided within the initial 12 month period, the cancellation rights of 14 days start to run from the date after the consumer receives that information.

If the cancellation rights still apply, you could consider pursuing them for the return of the deposit. Generally, when a person places an order for something and pays a deposit they enter into a legally enforceable contract with the seller. It is implied that the seller has accepted the deposit as security and as proof that the buyer wants to proceed with the contract.

Unless the seller subsequently commits a serious breach of contract, or there was a cancellation clause, the buyer would have no legal right to cancel the agreement and if they do so they will be acting in breach of contract and risk losing their deposit. This is especially true if the deposit was described as non-refundable.

If this was a business seller, they will be subject to certain consumer rules and regulations. For example, you will have some protection under Schedule 2, Regulation 1(d) of the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999. It states that if the contract has been cancelled after a deposit has been placed you are entitled to have the deposit returned in full, unless the seller has spent time, effort and money, in which case they can deduct reasonable expenses. Even if some expenses have been incurred, if these are subsequently recovered, for example by selling the item to someone else, the deposit should still be returned in full. It follows that a blanket non-refundable clause that entitles the seller to keep the deposit in all circumstances is most likely going to be unfair and unlawful.

If you are having difficulties in recovering the deposit when you believe you are entitled to have it returned, advise the seller that you will not hesitate reporting them to the Office of Fair Trading and, if necessary, pursue the matter further through the county court. Exerting such pressure could often work in changing the seller's position in this matter.

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