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Michael Holly
Michael Holly, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 6827
Experience:  I have 20 years of experience as a solicitor in litigation and other areas
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My son booked s wedding at Gosfield, Essex 29th December

Resolved Question:

Hi,
My son booked his wedding at Gosfield Hall, Essex for the 29th December 2016, he was required to place a deposit of £500, which he paid in February 2015. He was required to pay a further deposit of £4250 towards the total cost of around £12,000. Looking at the contract it is clear as it states that these sums are non - refundable.
My son broke up with his fiancee about a month ago and therefore the wedding has been canceled. He has contacted the venue and they have refused any refund.
I can see the contract does clearly state non - refundable but could this be argued as being unreasonable, I would have envisaged perhaps losing the initial £500, but to lose the £4000 as well seems extremely harsh.
I have briefly browsed an article on a government website indicating that some of these venues are being unreasonable and unfair, is there a possibility that my son could have a case for some of his money back.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Michael Holly replied 1 year ago.

You are correct that on a strict interpretation of the contract they are entitled to keep the money . The term was there to be seen.

However , you may have an argument that the term is unfair.

The starting point is to look at the purpose of such a clause which is to prevent the venue from suffering financial loss as a result of the cancellation.

This can be either that no one else books it for that evening , which remains to be seen how far away the event is and , given it is close to Xmas the event is, unlikely.

The other loss would be money they have spent in preparation of the event which again given how far away it is will be minimal if anything.

I would ask them what expense they have incurred and advise that you intend to seek recovery of a proportion of the deposit if the venue is rebooked for that date which a quick visit on that night will confirm.

Adviae that the matter can either be dealt with the way you propose or you are prepared to agree a reasonable fee now and both sides walk away.

Best wishes

Michael

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