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Am I entitled to a full refund of my downpayment, after cancelling a contract 3 business days after I signed it?

Pittsburg, CA |

I signed up with a Travel Club on a Saturday, and paid my downpayment on the same day. After 3 business days (Wednesday), I sent my cancellation notice through Certified Mail + Return Receipt. Then on Friday, the sales person offered to lower my fee and had me sign the contract with the lower fee and told me to think about it and come back. Stupidly, I signed it! Then, I came back and told them I really want to cancel. Now, they are saying that they cannot refund me my downpayment because I re-signed the contract. Is that legal? Or am I still entitled to get my full money back?

Also, I wanted to talk to anyone in "Corporate", but they won't give me the phone number to call and I found out that it their number not in the contract nor their website as well. What can I do about this problem?

Attorney Answers 3

  1. Not likely. However, one would have to review the actual contract that you signed and re-signed to be sure.

    California consumers often mistakenly believe that they automatically have a legal right to cancel any consumer contract they sign without penalty within 3 days after signing the contract, without providing the seller or other party with any reason to cancel. To the contrary, only specific types of transactions have such rights, and the time periods allowed for cancellation vary. These rights are created by specific statutes enacted by the California legislature.

    For an updated list of contracts which can be canceled with statutory contract cancellation rights, see the Legal Guide at

    Typically, in order to cancel, the consumer/buyer must sign and date the cancellation notice, which must state that the buyer is canceling the contract. The buyer should send the notice to the seller by certified mail, return receipt requested, at the address that the seller has given in the sale documents. The buyer should keep a copy of the notice for his or her own records, and to be able to prove that the notice was given and what was said. Generally, the buyer's notice of cancellation is effective when it is deposited in the mail with the proper address and postage. The buyer should note the exact date, time and place of mailing on the buyer's own copy.

    Since not all consumer contracts are included in the list of transactions, it is essential for consumers to understand their rights before entering into contracts in California.

    Here. the extra difficulty in your situation is that you re-signed the same contract.

    Frank W. Chen has been licensed to practice law in California since 1988. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice for a particular case. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult with your own attorney.

  2. You should look for a consumer law atty in your area to consult with. there may be some exceptions to the 3 day cooling off period right of rescission. You might also try the Ca dept of consumer affairs, and or the better bus bureau to file complaints.

  3. The new contract likely started a new 3 day period. If you cancel as you did the first time you are likely OK. Good luck with it.

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