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cancel a contract / cooling off period?

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Stefan View Drop Down
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Joined: 06/November/2011
Location: Australia
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  Quote Stefan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: cancel a contract / cooling off period?
    Posted: 06/November/2011 at 10:26
hi there.
I signed a contract for a hire car for 16-30 december on 2 November 2011.
I had been charged a "deposit" of $ 400 AND the entire hire fee of $ 500 straight away.
For a number of reasons, I would like to cancel that contract but the hire company insists that "if I cancel the contract the entire hire fee will be forfeited." This term had been pointed out to me and is actually printed in the contract and yes, I do regret ever agreeing to it..

I believe this is unreasonable and unfair and would like to know what I need to do to get out of this contract without losing the entire hire fee. I believe that due to the long notice ahead and the hire period being peak season, the hire company will be able to re-hire the car and only a small admin fee should be payable rather than this "penalty" of losing the entire hire fee.
Is there such a thing like a "cooling off period" for contracts of this nature?
Any advise will be greatly appreciated. I did try to negotiate in person, but to no avail, instead I got insulted verbally.
Kind Regards
Stefan

turboadam View Drop Down
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Joined: 24/March/2011
Location: Australia
Posts: 632
  Quote turboadam Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/November/2011 at 13:28
just out of curiosity who is the rental firm?

MartinO View Drop Down
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Joined: 02/March/2009
Location: Australia
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  Quote MartinO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/November/2011 at 13:30
I agree that this action is unreasonable, I doubt if any cooling off period applies as you called them to make the booking.

As the 'No Refunds' clause was included in whatever you signed you have an added difficulty.

To pursue legal remedies will also cost money.

How did you pay? If it was by credit card you may have a leg in, if you can organise a reversal of the payment.

The small claims court will be your least expensive legal option.
I am NOT a lawyer. Anything said is NOT legal advice.

Please post your legal questions in a forum rather than sending a PM. Thanks.

NotGuilty View Drop Down
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Joined: 19/February/2008
Location: ACT
Posts: 1139
  Quote NotGuilty Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/November/2011 at 22:25
Can you provide the actual wording of the clause in the contract that allows for the entire hire fee to be forfeited?

AsiaOilDude View Drop Down
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Joined: 17/February/2011
Location: Singapore
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  Quote AsiaOilDude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/November/2011 at 23:05
Urrgh - I've had this happen and I've found the best way is to negotiate as politely as possible to a settlement of some sort. We all know they will rent out the car to another party!
Not legal advice. Personal opinion only. Seek legal advice from qualified personnel only.

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