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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 12181
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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Hi, As my husband has a terminal illness and spends a lot of

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Hi, As my husband has a terminal illness and spends a lot of time in bed, I decided to buy an adjustable bed for him on line from Land of Beds at 3.50pm on 20th December 2013. Later the same day our District Nurse phoned about Christmas visits and when I mentioned the bed she advised not to buy as my husband would need a hospital bed at home in the near future (on loan).
I therefore cancelled the order in writing the following morning 21st December at 7.40 am and received a response saying that I could not cancel as the bed was a custom made item. As I had ordered from a bog standard web site page of options, I do not understand why they have not given me the usual 7 days cooling off period (for Distance Selling customers). This is not a crystal clear contract for 70+ aged pensioners!
They referred me to the Order Confirmation which they said gave all the legal information but it did not - it just stated "Custom Made" at the foot of the form. No explanation given on it to the effect that cancellation was not allowed.
As I have no room to take this bed, neither do I need it, do I have any way of having the £1,400 returned please? They have said if I pay them £300 they will take "the bed" into their stock holding but I have refused as how can a bed be manufactured in the few hours between order and cancellation??!
Thank you for your question.

I'm afraid custom made items are excluded from the Distance Selling Regulations even if the seller hasn't made the goods at the point of cancellation. The regulations have the following exceptions:

"Exceptions to the right to cancel

13. (1) Unless the parties have agreed otherwise, the consumer will not have the right to cancel the contract by giving notice of cancellation pursuant to regulation 10 in respect of contracts—

(a)for the supply of services if the supplier has complied with regulation 8(3) and performance of the contract has begun with the consumer’s agreement before the end of the cancellation period applicable under regulation 12;
(b)for the supply of goods or services the price of which is dependent on fluctuations in the financial market which cannot be controlled by the supplier;
(c)for the supply of goods made to the consumer’s specifications or clearly personalised or which by reason of their nature cannot be returned or are liable to deteriorate or expire rapidly;
(d)for the supply of audio or video recordings or computer software if they are unsealed by the consumer;
(e)for the supply of newspapers, periodicals or magazines; or
(f)for gaming, betting or lottery services."

Your bed comes under (c) being for the supply of goods made to the consumer's specifications.

I know this isn't what you want to hear but your contract is not one which can be cancelled once made.

Happy to discuss further.

Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thanks. I was hoping that there would be some flexibility but obviously not!

I may go back to the company and order a smaller bed which will fit in a single bedroom. At least then I don't feel as though I am throwing £300 down the drain. Thanks again - your advice saved me journeying into the larger town near here to see a solicitor.