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Seized engine vehicle on day of purchase - Hartley Wintney motors UK

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HI

I'm having an issue with a garage I bought a car from a few weeks ago (Hartley Wintney Motors UK - Hook).

 

I purchased the vehicle advertised as in A1 condition after taking it for a test drive and doing the usual self checks.

I drove home and took my wife for a spin, all in all about 60 miles and the car suddenly come to a stop while driving

- loss of engine, electrics, limited steering and braking.

 

Long story but AA suspected engine cease which after 5 days of taking the engine to pieces was confirmed by the garage the car was towed to. Only a replacement engine will do.

 

I told the showroom I am not happy with the car as it was not sold to me in the condition as advertised, and that I am not happy to have any old reconditioned engine put in (the car is a BMW 318 with 72k miles, and the showroom want to put any "ebay" engine in instead, as the quote for a proper like for like engine with the garage was too high for them) and to cut a very long story short I have been messed about, and sent them several letters and emails telling them I am rejecting the vehicle and requesting a refund plus additional costs incurred.

 

I have spoken to Trading Standards - citizens advice, and looked at the Consumer Rights Act 2015 to confirm my rights. The showroom are now asking for a vehicle casualty report, and in the same email telling me I am not automatically entitled to a refund of the vehicle, and can not claim additional costs. The same email says that I have to prove the vehicle had fault when purchased, and that even though the engine cease occurred on the same day, this does not mean it had fault at the time of purchase.

 

I have told them I am entitled to a refund under the Act, and if they want a report then they can get it themselves from the garage as the vehicle has been rejected by me. I've been quite stern with them due to the complete disregard and run around they are performing, and told them I want my refund by a set date or I will be opening a small claim against them through the Civil Court under the Civil procedure rules, and under the Consumer Rights Act 2015, the Consumer Credit Act 2015, and will be making a formal report through Trading Standards and the Financial Ombudsman should they not meet my demands. I have sent them extracts from the Consumer Rights Act stating it is the sellers responsibility to prove the vehicle did not have fault at time of purchase, and that if a serious fault develops within 6 months of purchase, the law assumes the fault WAS present at time of purchase.

 

I have asked them are they a member of a dispute resolution Association, and asked them why they have not offered me an alternative temporary or penmanant vehicle replacement and await a response. I feel I have done everything I need to do so far, and fully intend to take them to Court should it be required, but I wanted to ask if I have the right to rent a like for like vehicle until my refund is received, and claim this cost back through the Courts? I need a vehicle just to get shopping and I have 2 kids to get to pre paid clubs etc.... and I live in a rural area with limited public transport, and is there anything else I need to do?

 

Thanks in advance for any help with this

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Unfortunately as you have taken the car to another garage and had the engine stripped by a third party garage, this severely reduces your chances of a claim as you should have given the garage from whom you bought the vehicle the opportunity to repair or refund using your short term rights. 

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Thanks for the reply.

 

Just to clarify as I don't think I explained properly previously. The car was towed to the garage after breaking down. I contacted the showroom who were in contact with the garage throughout the coming week and the showroom authorised the garage (not me) to conduct all works on the vehicle to try and confirm the issue and potentially fix.

 

I had been in contact throughout that time with both the showroom and garage, and confirmed to both from day 1 that any work undertaken would be at the authority and payment of the showroom (The showroom told me the vehicle was under warranty for 3 months - a copy of which has never been provided to me even though I requested it and was promised it on 3 occasions), and it was on this basis that I told both parties I would not be authorising or paying for any work on the vehicle.

 

The garage were even contacting the showroom directly by phone updating them and gaining authority from the showroom at each stage of the process before gaining authority from them to continue the investigatory work, and they also reminded the showroom that I would not be authorising any work. The showroom did authorise the investigatory work at all stages, and when discovered it was a ceased engine, they asked for a quote which was too high for the showroom. The showroom then wanted to replace with an engine "on the cheap" from ebay. I told the showroom I was not happy about this as there was no guarantee where this reconditioned engine had come from and the mileage it had done.

 

The showroom said they would give a 1yr warranty on the engine replacement, but I was not happy as this still would not be a like for like engine, and potentially could have come from a collision vehicle and have potentially higher mileage (therefore of lower quality). At this point I informed them verbally that I was rejecting the car, and then I sent them a letter recorded and signed for to confirm this in writing.

 

Hopefully I have explained that situation a little better.

Thanks

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Okay understand now as thought you had made the decision for another garage to look at it.  A warranty is a meaningless piece of toiler paper as the Consumer Rights Act 2015 over rides any warranty.

You have exercised your right to reject and it seems they are refusing you that right and by doing so them could be committing a criminal act.  You have given them sufficient notice and now is the time to act decisively!  Do not leave it any longer and do not let them fob you off with them asking you for a few more days to investigate.

You should get a full refund plus compensation for any losses that you have incurred!

 

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Thread moved to the appropriate forum...please continue to post here to your thread.

 

Andy

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Thanks again for the reply Surfer01

 

Can I just confirm where you say I can claim for any losses incurred that this does include vehicle rental until such time as the full refund is returned to me?

 

I just need to clarify this point as my wife also "usually" drives to work and not having a vehicle, replacement or refund to purchase another car is causing an issue as due to her profession, she often has multiple large heavy bags to carry on a daily basis.

 

I feel we should be entitled to rent a vehicle (of the same type and at reasonable cost) until the money has been returned and we can purchase another car. The showroom are not offering a temporary vehicle or replacement, and have had plenty of chances to do so. By how difficult they are being I can only assume this will go to court and can take months. At an estimated £170-£200 per week to rent a vehicle, this represents a substantial cost if I cannot claim it back.

 

Thanks

 

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TBH I am not sure about the rental as maybe it could be argued that a taxi or bus could have been used.

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Thanks for your help and honesty. I think I may need to go back to Citizens advice and ask about that.

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Couple of questions for you:

Does your sale receipt says "limited" or "ltd" anywhere, referring to the limited company?

How did you pay for this car?

 

Word of advice, if you haven't done it already, keep things in writing or, if inevitable to speak to anyone, record the call.

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Posted (edited)

Was this car bought with cash, credit card or financed?

 

You have a few more options available if it was with a credit card or on finance.

Edited by Sparxeh

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I paid the deposit on my debit card and the final balance on credit card. I have contacted both and await paperwork for a chargeback but as far as I'm aware this is a lengthy process and doesn't cover additional cost. Looking at the receipts it shows as Hartley Wintney Motors Ltd.

 

I have received an email moments ago from them in response to my last email asking them for information of why they are not adhering to the Consumer Rights Act, and responding to the points made to me from them stating I am not automatically entitled to a refund and I must prove the fault was on the vehicle etc...telling them I want the refund by a certain date (3 weeks after payment made), and have copied this email below (I'm not sure if what they are saying is true in regards to ADR and Court action):

 

Dear Sir or Madam,

 

Your comments are necessary and unhelpful.
 

 

We do not seem to be any closer to reaching an agreement. We do not believe either party will benefit from further exchanges of communications.

Please register your complaint with The Motor Ombudsman:

https://www.themotorombudsman.org/consumers/make-a-complaint

The Motor Ombudsman is a certified Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) provider, is fully impartial and listens to both sides to deliver consistently fair outcomes. 

If you decide to continue with a court claim without any consideration to The Motor Ombudsman’s Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) decision, we reserve the right to a cost order against you. We refer you to the PRE-ACTION CONDUCT AND PROTOCOLS:

11. If proceedings are issued, the parties may be required by the court to provide evidence that ADR has been considered. A party’s silence in response to an invitation to participate or a refusal to participate in ADR might be considered unreasonable by the court and could lead to the court ordering that party to pay additional court costs.

 

Kind regards

 1516884312932_header.jpg

 

Hartley Wintney Motors U.K – Complaints

Whitney Moor Farm
Taplins Farm Lane

Winchfield

Hook

Hampshire

RG27 8SH

 

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If you have exhausted their complaints procedure then the next step in the Financial Ombudsman and trading Standards and not The Motor Ombudsman.  Do it today!  TBH never hear of the Motor Ombudsman previously until mentioned in this thread and they probably have no legal standing or clout! 

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Posted (edited)

They are just saying if you don't complain via the The Motor Ombudsman (complaint ADR scheme) first and go straight to Court, and you lose, the court may frown upon you not using the ADR scheme to resolve the situation. Then likely award the dealer's costs to be covered by you (if you lose), as you haven't been reasonable by not using the alternative dispute resolution scheme to try save court costs.

 

Do you have any paperwork or diagnostic from the garage who have inspected the car? Something that is dated and confirms XYZ faults found with the vehicle, inspected on the date you bought the car? If so, provide the dealer this or get something in writing from the garage who inspected the car. If the garage will still not accept your right to reject, then that's very bizarre and you will have to go down the ADR scheme and court potentially if the Motor Ombudsman are no help.

 

So go to the Motor Ombudsman if the above fails, exhaust their complaints procedure, if they help you win great. If they are useless and of no help, then you can start court proceedings if you feel necessary.

Edited by Sparxeh

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Thanks for the responses

 

I have looked at the motor ombudsman complaints process on the website and it says can take 90 days which to me seems like the showroom just trying to drag it out. But they have still not actually dealt with my complaint, answered my questions and given me a final response, now they don't want any communications with me?!? (weird how that now I've called them out, they don't want any more comms in writing with me).

I don't even think the ADR is an option until the complaint has been given a final response, and I'm not willing to wait 90 days before making a claim.

I don't have a report from the garage as I washed my hands with the vehicle, but I can request one.

Does anyone know if I can just go ahead with my claim and Id rather do that if this is going to drag on?

 

Thanks in advance for any responses

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11. If proceedings are issued, the parties may be required by the court to provide evidence that ADR has been considered. A party’s silence in response to an invitation to participate or a refusal to participate in ADR might be considered unreasonable by the court and could lead to the court ordering that party to pay additional court costs.

 

Erm not really....provision will be offered to participate in mediation ADR throughout the court claim process at allocation stage...only then could it have an adverse effect on costs...but you should consider all avenues before litigation

 

Andy

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Posted (edited)

Yes, ask the garage for a diagnostic/report whatever they can give you. Something that confirms the engine fault identified on or around the date you first collected the car. This is vital and key evidence should it go further e.g. court etc.

 

I would suggest doing the above first, give that to the dealer and ask if they are not accepting this as proof of fault upon purchase, then to give you a written/email 'final response' as to why they are not upholding the complaint. Then take this to The Motor Ombudsman and go from there.


Try to keep your cool, unsure of the tone of your emails/calls to the Dealer, so maybe that's why they are becoming defensive. Just keep your contact short, precise, to the point and factual.

Edit: Just seen you paid the majority of the car on credit card, you should ask your credit card company to initiate a Section 75 claim for faulty goods. Can I ask how much you paid on debit and credit card? (total price of car). You can read up more on S75 claims here.

Edited by Sparxeh

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4 minutes ago, Sparxeh said:

Yes, ask the garage for a diagnostic/report whatever they can give you. Something that confirms the engine fault identified on or around the date you first collected the car. This is vital and key evidence should it go further e.g. court etc.

 

I would suggest doing the above first, give that to the dealer and ask if they are not accepting this as proof of fault upon purchase, then to give you a written/email 'final response' as to why they are not upholding the complaint. Then take this to The Motor Ombudsman and go from there.


Try to keep your cool, unsure of the tone of your emails/calls to the Dealer, so maybe that's why they are becoming defensive. Just keep your contact short, precise, to the point and factual.

The OP first needs to claim the full amount from the credit card supplier using S75 and only if the CC provider rejects the refund do they approach an Ombudsman.  Why go the trouble of using the Motor Ombudsman who work for the dealers and not the consumers when you have a recognised organisation like the FOS?  There should be no need to go to court if using S75 and perhaps then FOS if the CC provider rejected the claim.

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TBH I have been quite direct with them, and told them I will take them to court if the refund is not given under the 30 day right to reject, but only after they become obstructive and refused my refund, prior to that I was very calm and polite.

I paid £300 deposit and £3794 remaining cost (included £99 admin fee).

I will request the report from the garage and forward to the showroom for my evidence should I need it.

I don't think I will use the Motoring Ombudsman for ADR unless I absolutely have to. I am waiting for the paperwork from the debit card and credit card providers to I can start the chargeback process to gain the cost of the vehicle and see how long that takes.

I have gained other additional costs due to this matter, and looks like I will be renting a vehicle for a couple of months now (or getting taxis) so that cost will need to be claimed through the court whatever happens.

Again, thank you for all your advice and support, it really does help! I have had some real bad luck (particularly financially) over the past few months, so this situation was the last thing I needed...just about reaching the end of my tether so thank you for your help!

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23 minutes ago, Surfer01 said:

The OP first needs to claim the full amount from the credit card supplier using S75 and only if the CC provider rejects the refund do they approach an Ombudsman.  Why go the trouble of using the Motor Ombudsman who work for the dealers and not the consumers when you have a recognised organisation like the FOS?  There should be no need to go to court if using S75 and perhaps then FOS if the CC provider rejected the claim.


Yeah I agree. I did edit my post later as realised he said bought on CC. :)

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Whatever you do,  don't go to any Ombudsman. 

They're all useless and give the dealer enough time to wind up the company and shift all assets if there are any.

The dealer is trying to force you to go to their friend the Ombudsman because they know the likely outcome.

Tell the garage that your deadline remains unchanged and you reject their adr suggestion, however you will be more than willing to use the Court Mediation service which is totally impartial.

There you have your adr service adhered to.

Anyhow, yours is a clear cut, so section 75 should be the way.

However,  if cc company does not accept section 75, you could possibly make them co-defendant, please expert caggers confirm.

In any case, i would tell garage that deadline is unchanged and and at the same time pursue section 75.

Give cc company a reasonable deadline as well (14 days)

Day 15 submit court claim.

Happy to be corrected.

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I am not using the Ombudsman as yet as I have instructed them to provide me with a final response to my complaint prior to using at dispute resolution.

 

I have told them I still want a resolution by the date previously given them, and if mediation is required that I suggest using the Court mediation service (I then quoted from citizens advice website (A party’s silence in response to an invitation to participate or a refusal to participate in ADR might be considered unreasonable by the Court and could lead to the Court ordering that party to pay additional court costs).

 

I have sent the paperwork to the cc provider today recorded mail so hopefully this will help a timely resolve. However there was no section on the form where I could state timescales to them. I have looked on the website of the cc provided to see if there is an idea of timescales, but none provided that I could see. Other sources have told me usually 30 days. :( 

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As far as I am aware mediation only takes place once all other avenues have been exhausted and it has gone to court.  I don't think any Ombudsman offers a mediation service as that is actually the job of the Ombudsman!

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Posted (edited)

The County Court Service offers mediation as a means of saving the court's time if it is possible to come to an arrangement. It does NOT take place after the claim has gone to court, but once it has been allocated to the Small Claims track by the TEC..

 

The Directions Questionaire, which is sent out as part of the notification Pack, has a box to tick if agreeing to mediation.

 

By the way, is it possible for a member of the site team to alter the title to 'siezed engine' as that is what I think the OP means as the problem.

Edited by Gick

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Looking at the N180 DQ small claims track document, it appears that the claim is opened through the small claims court initially, and then the opportunity is offered for mediation through HMCTS (free service) prior to a hearing listing. Only if mediation fails would a hearing be required. Although it does not state if this would be a hearing in person, or if a paper hearing can be requested (of course a Deputy/ District Judge can make a ruling for a hearing should they see fit following the application referral to the judge following mediation failure).

 

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That's why i said to avoid the Ombudsman. 

By accepting court mediation you will be fulfilling the requirements to use adr.

Note that it is called alternative dispute resolution,  not Ombudsman,  and being court mediation an adp, you don't need the Ombudsman. 

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