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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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Question related to consumer law, specifically vehicle

Customer Question

Question related to consumer law, specifically vehicle rejection on new vehicles where fault is within 6 months and the changes to law in october 2015 that enable this
Vehicle purchased end of december 2015 from mb franchise in stevenage, vehicle is on finance with mercedes benz finance. Fault happened a few times since probably deb and reported in june as it was more and more frequent, fault is no lights, no indicators and thus vehicle is not road legal.
Initial time it went in to local mercedes garage (franchised) at cambridge they upgraded frimware, reset the computer and handed back as fixed. i rasied a complaint case that this would not solve but they and mercedes uk insisted and closed call. fault was present again within a week.
this time they collected vehicle to mercedes cambridge and started looking, at the end of the day the fault was persistent and worse they returned the car to me in a non road legal state as they had no courtesy cars.
the car was recovered by mercedes benz recovery who woudl only take it to cambridge (not the selling mercedes garage in stevenage) they attempted multiple fixed over the next few weeks, each failing
mercedes stevenage agreed the car should remain with mercedes cambridge to fix as it was pointless in moving it (their words) i regard them as having subcontracted the fix to cambridge.
i formally advised all parties i had rejected the vehicle, attended MB cambridge and removed my personal items and handed over the remaining key.
2 days after this the vehicle was transferred to mb stevenage and they worked on it, i went on holiday 1 day after and during this time they claim to have implemented a permanent fix (this being the 5th attempted repair and 4th visit)
the law states i believe have to afford them one opportunity to fix it?
i had a complaint case reopened with mercedes benz uk and had to keep all parties involved, they continued to "reject my rejection" citing i should escalate to the financial ombusdman
i took advice from citizens advice and they agreed i had a case to progress the rejection
today, 6+ weeks later and 2 weeks after the latest fix the vehicle remains with mb stevenage and i remain with a courtesy car, MB UK today confirmed i could receive some financial compenstation (two months payments is the only detail i have) or a "favourable deal" on a new vehicle.
I wish to proceed with raising a county court claim and progress for a rejection permitted by the consumer act
what is your advice? could you do a merit assessment on this? if it were you would you progress and do you think you'd win!?
thanks and sorry for all the detail!
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

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

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
ok thanks
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

Hi Adam. Have you contacted the finance company about this? If so, what has their response been please?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
thats who i refer to as Mercedes UK
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

OK thank you for confirming this.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not responded to this message as it will just push your questions to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

Many thanks for your patience. I think you may have slightly misinterpreted the law so I will try and clarify it for you.

When a consumer makes a purchase from a business seller, they will have certain 'statutory' rights under the Consumer Rights Act 2015. The law states that the goods must be:

· of satisfactory quality – they must not be faulty or damaged when you receive them;

· as described – they must match any description given to you at the time of purchase; and

· fit for purpose – they should be fit for the purpose they are supplied for,

If they do not match the above requirements, you will have certain legal remedies against the seller. Also note that there is no protection against fair wear and tear, misuse or accidental damage, faults that were pointed out at the time of sale or if you change your mind and no longer want the goods.

If the goods do not meet the criteria mentioned above, you will have the following rights:

1. Reject them and request a refund - this is only possible if the rejection occurs within 30 days of purchase (or date on which the customer takes possession of the goods)

2. Ask for a repair or replacement – if you are too late to reject the goods or do not wish to get a refund straight away, you can ask the seller for a repair or replacement. If a repair has been arranged but has failed, or if a repair or replacement are not possible, you are still entitled to ask for a refund, or a price reduction. Alternatively you could get a second repair or replacement at no extra cost to you. However, the retailer can refuse if they can show that your choice is disproportionately expensive compared to the alternative.

A useful rule is that if a fault appears within the first 6 months after purchase, the law assumes that they did not meet the statutory requirements at the time of sale. If the retailer disagrees, it is for them to prove that this was not the case. However, if the fault occurs more than 6 months after purchase, it would be down to the consumer to prove that they did not meet the statutory requirements set out above at the time of sale. However, the rejection still needs to occur within the initial 30 days.

As you are outside of the initial 30 days and are too late to reject them, you can still try and resolve this by contacting the seller and asking them for a repair or replacement. You can quote the applicable rights you have under the Consumer Rights Act as mentioned above. If they appear reluctant to assist, write to them one more time, warn them that they have 7 days to comply and inform them that if they fail to meet their legal obligations, you will have no choice but to report them to Trading Standards and start legal proceedings to seek compensation for your losses.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you need to follow if you wish to take this matter further, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
I think specific rules around motor vehicles mean rejection is possible on new purchased vehicles within 6 months?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

There is no automatic right to reject the car within the first 6 months, this would only be possible of a repair has been attempted but has failed. The automatic right to reject only applies within the initial 30 days, whether it is a new or second hand one. The 6 month period only applies to the assumption that if something wrong happens with the car in that period it is assumed that it did not match the requirements of being fit for purpose, of satisfactory quality or as described, unless the seller can show otherwise. But the right to reject still only applies within the initial 30 days, or within the 6 months if a repair has been attempted and has been unsuccessful. Hope this clarifies?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
it does but as i said a repair has been attempted, and failed, two further attempts also made post my rejection, now after the 6 months but the fault was detailed to them within the 6, to summarise. Fault identified and showin within 6 months, initial repair failed. vehicles taken back, next repair failed, vehicle sent back to me. then recovered and next repair also failed. vehicle rejected (now after 6 months but only just). vehciel subsequently repaired however i do not have vehicle back they still have it and want me to collect. i have a courtesy car.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

The actual rejection must occur within the 6 months of purchase. So even tough the initial fault may have occurred in the initial 6 months and a repair carried out subsequently, any rejection as a result of inadequate repairs would have had to be done within this initial 6 months period. So if you are now outside of it, even if the repairs have been unsuccessful, you are now only able to ask for a further repair, replacement or a price reduction, you cannot reject the vehicle if you have gone past the initial 6 months after purchase.

I'm sorry if this is not necessarily the answer you were hoping for, however I do have a duty to be honest and explain the law as it actually stands. This does mean delivering bad news from time to time. I hope you understand and would be happy to provide any further clarification if needed. If you are still satisfied with the level of service you have received I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page. Thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. If this has answered your question please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars from the top of the page. I spend a lot of time and effort answering individual queries and I am not credited for my time until you leave your rating. If you still need further help please get back to me on here and I will assist as best as I can. Many thanks.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 month ago.

Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.

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