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Hello, I’m Ben, a UK lawyer and will be dealing with your case today. I may also need to ask some questions to determine the legal position.
So have you paid a deposit at all and if so, when exactly was this?
Thank you. I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.
Many thanks for your patience. Whilst putting such a term in their contract could potentially allow them to claim for it, they must ensure it is a fair and reasonable term and that it only goes as far as covering them for any losses they would have incurred as a result of your cancellation. So they need to be able to justify these losses and that they were unavoidable before they could charge you for them. Now that you have cancelled, they have a free date which they would be expected to fill. If they can do so and get at least the same amount as what they would have received from you, then they would have recouped most losses and they can only charge you for admin time for what has happened so far. Therefore you should be asking them for the necessary evidence that these costs were incurred and can even wait for some time before they know for sure whether this date can be filled and with what profits.
Does this answer your query?
‘Probably not going to fill it’ does not mean anything until closer to the date when they know for certain if that is the case. They are expected to still try and get a replacement so it means advertising that date as free and offering it to prospective couples.
At this stage you can always hold off from paying the fee on that basis – they cannot force you to do so anyway. The only way to make you pay is if they eventually went to the Small Claims Court and won. However, they may never go that far and even if they did – there is no guarantee they will win. In the event they did win, you will only be liable to pay what the court has ordered based on what losses they have suffered but you won’t have to pay their solicitors’ fees as they pay their own in that venue
Thanks, all of the above still stands - especially at this stage you can easily refuse to pay anything as you simply do not know if the date will get filled or not, there is plenty of time left