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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71030
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I completed a vehicle order form for a new car on Sunday at

Customer Question

I completed a vehicle order form for a new car on Sunday at a dealership and paid £500 deposit. The deal included a deposit, plus my old car worth £250, zero % finance for 35 months and a balloon payment on the 36 payment. I signed the form and finance form just before closing time and only have a copy of the order form, not the finance form. There is no delivery date on the form but the salesman said 2-3 weeks.
I have now had the opportunity to think about this huge purchase and have realised that I cant afford to commit that much money over this time. I feel the paperwork was rushed at the end of the day, and I wasn't given any further information about what happened next, other than my car needed to be delivered this weekend.

I want to cancel the contract but didn't see anything about cooling off period. Do I have one, and what's the appropriate way of cancelling the order/contract?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your question . My name is Jo and I will try to help with this.

Did you agree any cooling off rights please?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

nothing was mentioned either verbally in writing- my sister was also with me at the dealers.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

Does the finance allow you to cancel? They will be two separate contracts.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

As far as I can recall the finance form was details of my occupation, home address and bank account details. I cannot recall any other information on the form and was not given a copy- I believe this would have been for the finance reference check?-is that a contract or does that happen after I have been cleared for finance?

I cant believe I didn't insist on a copy of the form, but it was late in the day, and all sense had obviously disappeared.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Yes, these things do often affect you in that way.

I just need 10 mins to type out an answer if thats ok?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


yes that's great thank you

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Thanks for the information. Overall, its quite good news in relation to the car but the finance is more complicated.
Unfortunately, its not likely that you have rights to cancel. If you do a deal in store then you are locked in immediately. You do have automatic rights to cancel. You can agree cancellation rights under the contract which would be enforceable but commonly they have not been agreed because it wouldn’t be in the store’s interest.
It would be different if you had done the deal by distance. Then the distance selling regulations would give you unconditional rights to cancel.
If you cancel then you will be in breach of contract. However, they can still only claim the sum of their loss. They still have the car to sell and therefore have provided no consideration for this contract. The most they could claim here is some administration costs and maybe the cost of readvertising. That is very unlikely to be the sum of your deposit or anything close.
If you ask for your deposit back then its likely that you would get it all back. If they do refuse then you can always sue them at the small claims court here
While they do have a right to be compensated for some administration costs its very unlikely that they would bother to contest such a claim on this basis as it just plain wouldn’t be worth the manpower.
All that said, you must check your finance in the morning. Often they do have cancellation rights which you should exercise.
If this one does not then the difficulty will be that then will pay for the car immediately so the deal is closed and you cannot just withdraw and pay for only cancellation rights. Its quite unlikely they would enforce this even if you were in that position but Obviously we are looking at worse case scenario. Might be worth investigating that and posting back in the morning on this question when you know.
Hope this helps.
Please let me know if you need more information.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

thanks for this reply. I don't have a copy of the "finance application form". All that is stated on the order form is Finance £13145. They showed me the monthly repayments and balloon payment on a print out.

Should I ask them for a copy of that form first, before informing them that I want to cancel the contract. As far as I understood the finance agreement would be completed when the first lump sum was paid for the car. The £500 was an initial sign of commitment. The form I think only had personal and bank details, not any figures

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
You do need to get sight of the contract but you might as well call on the morning and cancel.

If they agree its game over.

If they refuse then get a copy of the finance of at least the name of the finance company so you can find out directly.

Usually there is a cancellation period.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


thank you. I have just received an email this evening from the dealer saying the finance has gone through does that mean I am too late? The salesman I dealt with is on leave tomorrow, but I don't want to delay at all. Am I better to put the request in writing or phone?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Do both. Call first thing but follow up in writing.

You are not necessarily too late if there are cooling off rights.