Catching the Storm – or Catching a Cold? The Importance of Actual Rejection

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The customer had simply left it far too late to reject and that her continued usage of the car was her legally accepting it with the alleged defect.

Author: Jason Williams
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One of our clients recently had a court claim for over £10,000 for rejection of a car purchased in May 2019.  It was alleged that the car had an embryonic and inherent defect in the paintwork.  The Claimant says this became obvious in November 2019. Despite this, the Claimant chose not to reject the car and carried on racking up the miles.

In September 2020, one of Lawgistics’ perceived competitors (who also act for consumers) sent our client a Letter of Claim and a draft Particulars of Claim.  Again, this was not including rejection, only a claim for £7000 for repairs.

However, in December 2020, the actual court claim came in – demanding only a full rejection and nothing else.

We advised our client to go for a Summary Judgment.  This is an Application to the court, inviting it to conclude that the claim was so unlikely to succeed that it should not proceed to a full and expensive hearing.

It was argued that it took over a year after the alleged defect manifested itself for the Claimant to reject the car and, that even some 10 months after the alleged defect became visible, the Claimant was asking only for repair not to reject.

It was also argued that the Claimant had simply left it far too late to reject and that her continued usage of the car was her legally accepting it with the alleged defect.

The Application for Summary Judgment was successful and the claim was dismissed as was the Claimant’s plea for permission to appeal.

The Claimant was ordered to pay our client over £500, comprising the cost of making the Application and the fee for the advocate’s telephone court attendance.

If you want the best legal advice from a company who only advises the motor trade and not consumers, call the Lawgistics helpline on 01480 455500.

Jason Williams

Legal Advisor

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