Legal advise- who to approach

Feb 1, 2019
7
0
0
Visit site
has anyone on here taken legal action against a dealer or manufacturer?

we had a Lunar Delta 2017 which had a clean service 8 weeks ago, which the damp check was all said to be fine with no issues.
2 weeks ago we went to trade it in for a new Buccaneer Barracuda.

Upon arrival at the new dealer they found, and pointed out to me cracking on both the front and rear panels. and inside was also soaked as it had been raining on the journey to them.
The new dealer also said that as there was no paperwork to say so, they could not check to see if the warranty had been transferred into our name (it was 6 months old when we purchased jt) as it was a Saturday and Lunar would not be open.

Stuck between a rock and a hard place on the day with a case of either take the old caravan home and not be able to go on holiday the next week, and potentially have months without a caravan whilst its away or disputing with Lunar themselves. Or, cough up an extra £6000 on top of the figure we had agreed on.
With a distraught wife and the prospect of having no end of issues we felt we had no option but to bite the bullet and pay an extra £6k and at least come away with the new barracuda.

Subsequently we have since found out that, after a call to Lunar , the warranty was in our name, and that cracks coming from the joints were covered for 6yrs.
we then spoke to the new dealer asking for pics, but not letting on that we had spoken to Lunar. they sent pics over and also said that they had tried to put in a warranty claim in our name and that it had been refused.
So we then spoke to Lunar again, asking for this decision to be reviewed. A week later Lunar have come back to us saying that it has been refused again as the parts affected are only covered for one year - even though its cracks from joins.

I'm trying to find out who is best to get to look into our situation as there are a 2 issues that we would like to try and claim one way or another:

1. The damp and cracking was not picked up on the service even though, according to the new dealer they had been there for some time. The damp report was also not detailed enough. Is the big national dealer who carried out the service negligent in their servicing?

2. Do we have a case against Lunar for refusing to carry out warranty work for damage that IS covered by warranty?

Any help would be much appreciated!!!
 
Nov 11, 2009
20,848
6,513
50,935
Visit site
minimodz said:
has anyone on here taken legal action against a dealer or manufacturer?

we had a Lunar Delta 2017 which had a clean service 8 weeks ago, which the damp check was all said to be fine with no issues.
2 weeks ago we went to trade it in for a new Buccaneer Barracuda.

Upon arrival at the new dealer they found, and pointed out to me cracking on both the front and rear panels. and inside was also soaked as it had been raining on the journey to them.
The new dealer also said that as there was no paperwork to say so, they could not check to see if the warranty had been transferred into our name (it was 6 months old when we purchased jt) as it was a Saturday and Lunar would not be open.

Stuck between a rock and a hard place on the day with a case of either take the old caravan home and not be able to go on holiday the next week, and potentially have months without a caravan whilst its away or disputing with Lunar themselves. Or, cough up an extra £6000 on top of the figure we had agreed on.
With a distraught wife and the prospect of having no end of issues we felt we had no option but to bite the bullet and pay an extra £6k and at least come away with the new barracuda.

Subsequently we have since found out that, after a call to Lunar , the warranty was in our name, and that cracks coming from the joints were covered for 6yrs.
we then spoke to the new dealer asking for pics, but not letting on that we had spoken to Lunar. they sent pics over and also said that they had tried to put in a warranty claim in our name and that it had been refused.
So we then spoke to Lunar again, asking for this decision to be reviewed. A week later Lunar have come back to us saying that it has been refused again as the parts affected are only covered for one year - even though its cracks from joins.

I'm trying to find out who is best to get to look into our situation as there are a 2 issues that we would like to try and claim one way or another:

1. The damp and cracking was not picked up on the service even though, according to the new dealer they had been there for some time. The damp report was also not detailed enough. Is the big national dealer who carried out the service negligent in their servicing?

2. Do we have a case against Lunar for refusing to carry out warranty work for damage that IS covered by warranty

Any help would be much appreciated!!!

Your consumer rights are against the supplying dealer not Lunar. Read up on the UK gov website and seek advise from the Citizens Advise helpline. Tell the supplying dealer what your complaint is and ensure you record everything and back up your complaint in writing. Be prepared fir a longish haul potentially going via the Small Claims Court but yes such action does bear fruit.
 

Damian

Moderator
Mar 14, 2005
7,510
936
30,935
Visit site
Put very bluntly there is no one on this forum that can advise you.
You should contact a legal professional who is versed in consumer law.
 
Jun 26, 2017
445
17
10,685
Visit site
Sorry to hear of your dilemma, and I too am of course unable to advise you professionally minimodz, but from reading your post and out of interest, am I right in my understanding that you are looking to seek legal redress for the speculated cost of some remedial works which haven’t been undertaken from the original supplier of a caravan which you have recently contractually sold and are no longer the legal owner of ?
 
Mar 14, 2005
17,860
3,230
50,935
Visit site
minimodz said:
I'm trying to find out who is best to get to look into our situation as there are a 2 issues that we would like to try and claim one way or another:

1. The damp and cracking was not picked up on the service even though, according to the new dealer they had been there for some time. The damp report was also not detailed enough. Is the big national dealer who carried out the service negligent in their servicing?

2. Do we have a case against Lunar for refusing to carry out warranty work for damage that IS covered by warranty?

Any help would be much appreciated!!!

Hello Minimodz,

The tale you tells is sad story, and you would do well to read up about your statutory rights. In addition to the site that Otherclive has suggested, you may find a more digestible description on the Consumer Association and the money saving expert’ s web sites.

It is a tricky situation because you capitulated under emotional pressure which has cost you an extra £6k, when if you had held off for a few days you may have been able to sort out some of these points and renegotiate a less costly deal.

I have to presume that when you first saw the new caravan, you told the dealer about your caravan and based on your description, the dealer will have estimated the value of your caravan. But unless they had seen the caravan, they could only base their estimate on the information you had supplied. Dealers in this position should make it clear that their estimate would be subject to the old caravan being in the condition you actually described, and its value may be affected by its actual condition. A £6k difference does seem a lot,

When you presented the caravan, they naturally will have inspected it and in this instance found the cracked panels and damp inside the caravan. You do not seem to be disputing these faults.

It seems you are disputing the effectiveness of the last service and damp report carried out by your service agent. You need to have a copy of the schedule of works that you contracted the service agent to do. You need to then look carefully at how that squares with the results you were given to see if the work should have identified and reported the issues you subsequently found.

Sadly often customers may be surprised that their expectations are not actually covered in the schedule of work they have agreed to for the service. It always pays to read the small print.

You would need to establish that during a service it would be expected that these faults would have been identified and reported. You would then need to be able to provide enough evidence that the faults were present at the time of the service, and consequently the fact they were not reported represents a breach of the service contract.

I do not believe you have any claim against the service agent for the reduction in the value you received for the caravan, as it was still within your choice whether to proceed with your new purchase or not. You could have withdrawn from the purchase in view of the reduced offer for your old caravan.

Your dealings with the manufacture are governed by the terms and conditions for the Manufacturer's Warranty. It is a contractual arrangement and it should also fall under your statutory rights if some aspect of its execution falls outside of the T&C’s, or a contractual term is judged to be unfair.

As always seek trusted advice about how to proceed. You may have some legal fees cover in your household insurance.
 
Nov 11, 2009
20,848
6,513
50,935
Visit site
ProfJohnL said:
minimodz said:
I'm trying to find out who is best to get to look into our situation as there are a 2 issues that we would like to try and claim one way or another:

1. The damp and cracking was not picked up on the service even though, according to the new dealer they had been there for some time. The damp report was also not detailed enough. Is the big national dealer who carried out the service negligent in their servicing?

2. Do we have a case against Lunar for refusing to carry out warranty work for damage that IS covered by warranty?

Any help would be much appreciated!!!

Hello Minimodz,

The tale you tells is sad story, and you would do well to read up about your statutory rights. In addition to the site that Otherclive has suggested, you may find a more digestible description on the Consumer Association and the money saving expert’ s web sites.

It is a tricky situation because you capitulated under emotional pressure which has cost you an extra £6k, when if you had held off for a few days you may have been able to sort out some of these points and renegotiate a less costly deal.

I have to presume that when you first saw the new caravan, you told the dealer about your caravan and based on your description, the dealer will have estimated the value of your caravan. But unless they had seen the caravan, they could only base their estimate on the information you had supplied. Dealers in this position should make it clear that their estimate would be subject to the old caravan being in the condition you actually described, and its value may be affected by its actual condition. A £6k difference does seem a lot,

When you presented the caravan, they naturally will have inspected it and in this instance found the cracked panels and damp inside the caravan. You do not seem to be disputing these faults.

It seems you are disputing the effectiveness of the last service and damp report carried out by your service agent. You need to have a copy of the schedule of works that you contracted the service agent to do. You need to then look carefully at how that squares with the results you were given to see if the work should have identified and reported the issues you subsequently found.

Sadly often customers may be surprised that their expectations are not actually covered in the schedule of work they have agreed to for the service. It always pays to read the small print.

You would need to establish that during a service it would be expected that these faults would have been identified and reported. You would then need to be able to provide enough evidence that the faults were present at the time of the service, and consequently the fact they were not reported represents a breach of the service contract.

I do not believe you have any claim against the service agent for the reduction in the value you received for the caravan, as it was still within your choice whether to proceed with your new purchase or not. You could have withdrawn from the purchase in view of the reduced offer for your old caravan.

Your dealings with the manufacture are governed by the terms and conditions for the Manufacturer's Warranty. It is a contractual arrangement and it should also fall under your statutory rights if some aspect of its execution falls outside of the T&C’s, or a contractual term is judged to be unfair.

As always seek trusted advice about how to proceed. You may have some legal fees cover in your household insurance.

Prof
I had a rear panel replaced last year. Fortunately it was detected early and only a very small area of damp in the toilet corner. But that dried out without need to replace the wall or ceiling covering. The work was done under warranty but I was told that if it were a self funded job I would have been looking at over £2k plus any remedial work to replace damp damaged areas. Since 2005 I’ve had three panels replaced on modern construction caravans. Never happened on my old ones.
 
May 7, 2012
8,598
1,816
30,935
Visit site
Having sold the caravan to the new dealer then I am afraid I cannot see that you have any legal right to recover the £6,000 which sounds very over the top for the repair although i have not seen the problem so it might be justified if very bad.
Your legal rights for a repair would be primarily against the dealer rather than Lunar but you also have the benefit of the Lunar guarantee which they transferred to you. The one year cover on the parts listed would not be effective in my opinion on this case as they also give a six year water ingress warranty which would still apply. To eliminate the water ingress they have to replace the faulty parts.This point has been accepted by Eldiss is fairly similar circumstances where a similar exclusion was used.
The problem you have as I see it is that the new dealer is the one who now has to deal with Lunar and having got your money there is little incentive for them to push Lunar on the point I raised. Even if they get Lunar to pay I cannot see what right you have to recover anything unless you have a contract to the effect.
Can you sue the dealer who sold it to you. As I see it no. Almost certainly had you claimed against them at the time you would have had a right to a repair which you could enforce, and assuming the dealer was a Lunar agent and you were suing them they would have a lot more influence with Lunar and would be in a better position to get the work paid for.
As it stands the dealer cannot repair it as they should have, and you cannot even prove what the cost of the repair would have been, which is what you could sue for if was repaired for you elsewhere.
If you are a member of either of the clubs you could see if their legal helplines have any idea or possibly your house contents insurer or any union you are a member of may have one. The house insurer might have given legal assistance cover as the Prof says so check this out.
 
Jun 17, 2011
826
27
18,885
Visit site
Sorry to hear your dilemma as we had a similar situation. Part exchange arranged but 3000 fell off the trade in when we went to collect new caravan. This was slightly different in that we had bought the trade in caravan under a year previously from a dealer. I immediately told the new dealer i seek compensation from the dealer who sold it me. I wrote to him, he ignored me so I wrote again by recorded delivery. And again threatening county court. Eventually i issued proceedings against him and then got a response. Eventually he paid up three days before the court hearing. The bad news is that he bought the trade in back from the new dealer and sold it again unrepaired. At the time I was member of a trade union and membership gave me free access to legal advice. The onduty solicitor happened to be a caravanner and advised what to do. I also had a colleague who was a lecturer in law who gave me help. Some house insurance policies have legal advice sections.
 
Nov 11, 2009
20,848
6,513
50,935
Visit site
Raywood said:
Having sold the caravan to the new dealer then I am afraid I cannot see that you have any legal right to recover the £6,000 which sounds very over the top for the repair although i have not seen the problem so it might be justified if very bad.
Your legal rights for a repair would be primarily against the dealer rather than Lunar but you also have the benefit of the Lunar guarantee which they transferred to you. The one year cover on the parts listed would not be effective in my opinion on this case as they also give a six year water ingress warranty which would still apply. To eliminate the water ingress they have to replace the faulty parts.This point has been accepted by Eldiss is fairly similar circumstances where a similar exclusion was used.
The problem you have as I see it is that the new dealer is the one who now has to deal with Lunar and having got your money there is little incentive for them to push Lunar on the point I raised. Even if they get Lunar to pay I cannot see what right you have to recover anything unless you have a contract to the effect.
Can you sue the dealer who sold it to you. As I see it no. Almost certainly had you claimed against them at the time you would have had a right to a repair which you could enforce, and assuming the dealer was a Lunar agent and you were suing them they would have a lot more influence with Lunar and would be in a better position to get the work paid for.
As it stands the dealer cannot repair it as they should have, and you cannot even prove what the cost of the repair would have been, which is what you could sue for if was repaired for you elsewhere.
If you are a member of either of the clubs you could see if their legal helplines have any idea or possibly your house contents insurer or any union you are a member of may have one. The house insurer might have given legal assistance cover as the Prof says so check this out.

The OP stated that both front and rear panels were cracked and the inside was soaked as it had been raining. But my Sprite rear panel replacement was costed at over £2k. So I don’t think the buying dealer was being particularly unfair as they weren’t to know what might be found on opening up the front and rear areas. The OP had a choice and opted to buy the new van with a £6k reduction in trade in. In my view he should have taken time out to consider his position. Which currently stands as complex and weak. For al he knows the old Lunar might now have been sold internally within the trade so his Buccaneer dealer may no longer have it. They are the owners and in the absence of any agree to retain it they aren’t obliged to keep it. After all given the time to procure panels they’d hardly want it hanging around. My two panels in 2006-7 for a Bailey took six months as did the one in 2018 for the Sprite. It’s at such times you realise the benefits of Eternabond tape.
 
May 7, 2012
8,598
1,816
30,935
Visit site
Clive, I was looking at the idea of about £2,000 plus for a front or back panel which gave me about £4,000 to £5,000. £6,000 is possible but it looks like a worst case figure to me. I accept that the new dealer might have sold it on although that would presumably be at a loss. To be clear though it does not affect the OP's legal position which I think was lost when he agreed the deduction. I can understand his reasons for this but if faced with this sort of dilemna I think the best course of action is to try and negotiate a delay in the transaction while you get advice and check your legal rights. Under pressure at the dealers though trying to do this is not easy and you may think even £6,000 is the best way forward at the time.
 
Nov 11, 2009
20,848
6,513
50,935
Visit site
Raywood said:
Clive, I was looking at the idea of about £2,000 plus for a front or back panel which gave me about £4,000 to £5,000. £6,000 is possible but it looks like a worst case figure to me. I accept that the new dealer might have sold it on although that would presumably be at a loss. To be clear though it does not affect the OP's legal position which I think was lost when he agreed the deduction. I can understand his reasons for this but if faced with this sort of dilemna I think the best course of action is to try and negotiate a delay in the transaction while you get advice and check your legal rights. Under pressure at the dealers though trying to do this is not easy and you may think even £6,000 is the best way forward at the time.

Ray
Agreed it would be a worse case estimate but if I were a commercial buyer faced with uncertainty I’d probably offer the same. No sense in risking the businesses profits.

The OPs position has been worsened by the sale of the old van to another dealer not linked to its original purchase. Your advice is probably the best. Time to move on and enjoy the new caravan this summer and beyond.
 
Jun 20, 2005
17,636
3,721
50,935
Visit site
Icaru and Ray have hit the nail on the head.
As soon as the OP did his deal, Legal Title of his Lunar passed to the new dealer. At that point the OP ceased to have any financial interest in the Lunar thus he cannot expect any recompense.
The new dealer may try some action with Lunar but in the absence of any transfer of Guarantee/ Warranty I believe Lunar can walk away.
With all due respect I suspect the OP is not short of cash and did the deal at an extra £6k for the reasons stated. Not a deal I would have entered into. The transfer of legal title here results in a situation a bit like bolting the stable door after the horse has bolted.
 
May 24, 2014
3,687
765
20,935
Visit site
I agree with all thats been said. The time to challenge this was when the OP owned the problem caravan. As he was clearly told there was a problem, the answer was to walk away from the deal and challenge both Lunar and the service agent. The moment ownership was relinquished I feel it became a no win situation.
 
Mar 14, 2005
17,860
3,230
50,935
Visit site
Minimodz is in a weak position.

The suspicion is that the last service and inspection on his caravan was not carried out competently because the cracks to the panels were not reported.

This has come to light because when his caravan was submitted as part of a PX deal the 2nd dealer identified the cracks, and commented that in his opinion they must have been present and detectable for some time, implying they would most likely have been detectable at the caravans last service and inspection. The 2nd dealer also detected significant damp issues, which I will return to a little later.

The issue of the cracks raises a number of possibilities:-

The cracks were not present when the caravan was serviced, so there was no reasosn to report them.
The cracks were present at the time of the service, but had not developed enough to be noticed. So they were not reported.
The cracks were present and visible, but had at that point not penetrated to become a water ingress point, and were not considered to be serious or were misdiagnosed as something not important..
.The cracks were present in a visible form and were penetrated, but the inspector was not competent to identify them as a serious reportable fault
The inspector did not inspect the caravan properly and missed the evidence.

The 2nd dealers revelation that the caravan had extensive areas of damp raises a set of similar possibilities:-

If the caravan had been kept under a waterproof cover or the weather had been dry prior to its inspection it’s possible that a damp inspection would not reveal excessive damp problems.
The damp may have been present but below levels that raise concerns
The damp was present but was not measured correctly rendering a value below the concern threshold.
The damp was present but the inspector was not competent to understand the significance of the results.
The inspector did not inspect the caravan properly and missed the evidence.

The consequence of some combination of these possibilities range from the problems were not present at the service and thus could not be reported, to the 1st service agent missed the problems and thus acted incompetently.

The problem with all this is the OP no longer has the caravan, and as such, the evidence is not accessible to establish what may have really happened.

The OP was not forced to accept the lower offer from the second dealer, the choice was entirely the OP’s., so they cannot claim the 1st dealer has any liability for the reduced PX figure. And the second dealer is not to blame either, except they may have raised the OP’s expectations by a very attractive suggestion that their (un inspected) caravan may be worth more that it really is.

This is sadly an example of heart ruling head, and the importance of getting any item being used for collateral in a PX is accurately described, and indeed inspected by the buying dealer to establish a firm value before contracting to buy.

I’m not unsympathetic to minimodz predicament, but realistically it’s an example of how not to conduct a PX deal. You need to work on factual information not assumptions.

Whether it’s possible to make any sort of claim against the 1st dealer is unclear, because the evidence is not accessible, but in my view the only action possible would be for the cost of the service and inspection which may not have been performed with sufficient care and attention, and as I pointed out in my last post, it would depend on exactly what was contracted.
 
Oct 20, 2015
191
165
18,635
Visit site
I’ve followed this thread and have empathy for minimodz and family, I do agree with the head over heart sentiment expressed- one now to I feel to put down to bad experience and I feel for the OP to move on from. Im sure we’ve all made regretted choices: A reminder and lesson for us all.
 
May 7, 2012
8,598
1,816
30,935
Visit site
I suppose it might be possible to reclaim the cost of the damp check but at about 5o pounds it is hardly worth it but I assume the service was carried out so that the cost is not recoverable. I have sympathy for the OP but I cannot see any real prospect of a claim for his losses once he took the reduced part exchange figure.
If you do go for a part exchange where the buyer has not seen the caravan, then I would do what I did and get it checked. You may not always like the answer but at least you will be forewarned and can sort things out in advance if you need to.
 

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts