Areas of Law / Consumer Law

We put down a £300 deposit on a £1600 antique fireplace but we’’ve had a family crisis and can’’t afford the money. I rang the shop and they offered to refund half my deposit, but I told them that wasn’’t good enough. Now I’’ve had a letter saying I can’t have any money back and I’’m lucky they’’re not suing me for the other £1300. Is this right?

I’’m afraid it is. You entered into a contract to buy the fireplace and should probably have accepted the firm’s initial offer to refund half of your deposit. A deposit is normally considered non-refundable except where there is an indication to the contrary. In order to sue you successfully however the firm would have to be able to provide evidence of their losses as a result of the deal falling through.

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