Alternative Dispute Resolution

Tuesday, 17. January 2017

Hi, Graham Hill here, thank you so much for visiting my blog, I hope you learn a lot and as a result end up driving a great car. In order to do so you can get all the information you need by buying my book, An Insider Guide To Car Finance or use me to finance your next car. Happy driving.

There are a great number of misunderstandings when it comes to resolving problems with garages and dealerships. You can avoid the costs of a court case by turning to an Alternative Dispute Resolution company, recommended by the Government as a way to stop courts from getting clogged up.

If you have a dispute with a dealer that you cannot resolve between yourselves you can refer your complaint to an ADR company. In fact the dealer must suggest an ADR company if they are part of a trade body. If they aren’t part of a trade body the dealer must point you in the direction of ADR but they do not have to adhere to the recommendations of the ADR company, which kinda makes the whole process a bit of a nonsense.

If they are part of a trade body the dealer must be signed up to a code of practice against which their performance is judged. I have my reservations regarding this practice, especially as the courts themselves can encourage you to go through a court appointed ADR company in order to avoid taking up court time and the possibility of you carrying the costs if your court case fails.

I just feel that a court appointed ADR service would carry more weight than an independent working with the dealership’s trade body. Time will tell if my reservations were justified. By Graham Hill

Lawyers Argue Over Interpretation of the Consumer Rights Act

Friday, 30. October 2015

No sooner has the new Consumer Rights Act become law than we are already seeing lawyers disagreeing with each other. Let’s take the example of the used car dealer who sells a car that turns out to be faulty and is returned by the customer. One lawyer suggests ‘The durability of a vehicle is down to the manufacturer in the design and use of quality materials and, as such, a second hand dealership does not have control over these issues.’ Idiots!

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They are advising dealers to try to avoid their responsibility to their customers by suggesting that if the car has a fault when sold, that is a manufacturing fault, that the dealer isn’t responsible. As another lawyer pointed out, whilst this may be true the second hand dealer could be liable for any issues as the purchasers contract is with the dealer not the manufacturer. Could be?? That should read definitely liable. No question!

If the dealer wants to offset the cost by suing the manufacturer that is up to him but the customer has a right to expect the car to have no faults other than any that have been pointed out prior to the sale. Next issue was over Fit for Purpose. One lawyer suggested that if an electrician can carry all of his tools in a briefcase, a sports car with a small boot would be fit for that particular purpose.

That might be fine but to be fair to the dealer he needs to be told the purpose for which the car is being bought. You can’t buy a 1.0 litre city car then take it back because it wouldn’t tow your 8 berth caravan unless you told the car dealer that this was what you wanted to do with the car and he told you it would do that no problem.

But it gets worse because another lawyer, trying to be a bit of a smart arse said that if an electrician or tradesperson is using the vehicle for business, then they are probably not a consumer and so the act would not apply in this case.

Well Mr Smartarse lawyer you are right, a business user is not covered by the new Consumer Rights Act but as long as he isn’t a limited company or large partnership he is still covered by the Sale of Goods Act and the car must still be fit for purpose and if it isn’t you can still get your money back. Good grief – and I’m not a lawyer! Lawyer 1 then goes on to say the following to dealers when it comes to remedies:

  1. Short term right to reject (up to 30 days from the point of sale)
  2. The right to repair or replacement (for 6 months following the point of sale)
  3. The right to a price reduction

Lawyer 2 points out that the right to repair does not end at 6 months. The statute of limitations gives the consumer 6 years – you may not have known that! Point c should read ‘the right to a price reduction or final right to reject’.

Regarding the issue of deductions for usage. The first lawyer states the following:

“The question here is how dealerships would assess this deduction. The obvious place to start would be the price that they would need to pay for a similar vehicle if they purchased it for stock on the day of the rejection, which could of course be significant and would need to be explained to the vehicle owner.”

That is a disgrace because the instructions within the act on this matter are very clear and quite contrary to this advice that suggests that usage should be based on the price of the vehicle when bought at its retail price less the trade value of a replacement vehicle. The instructions state:

Note that the deduction must be calculated based on the use that the consumer has had from the goods, and not the second-hand value of the goods. 

Couldn’t be much clearer could it you idiots. But the point here is that if the lawyers advising the car dealers can’t agree amongst themselves and get it right what chance do consumers have? By Graham Hill

The Difference Between A Car Mechanic & Fitter Explained

Tuesday, 23. September 2014

When you take your car in for servicing or repair is it dealt with by a fitter or a mechanic. Personally, until recently, I didn’t know the difference and frankly it isn’t something that keeps me awake at night.

Thinking of a change but unsure as to the best way to finance your car? Then you need a copy of my car finance book, Car Finance – A Simple Guide by Graham Hill. Click on the link below to buy the best car finance book on the market, available as a Kindle Book and Paper Back.

But in new guidelines issued by the Government, as part of its plans to licence garages, it apparently fails to identify the clear distinction between the two which has upset a few mechanics. So to clarify, a fitter is someone who simply changes components as recommended by the manufacturer/computer.

Whereas a mechanic is someone who needs a much greater understanding as to how things work. So there you have it, recognition at last for the mechanics who have been confused with those far less qualified fitters! By Graham Hill

Which Are The Most Dangerous Occupations?

Wednesday, 2. April 2014

GoCompare.com have analysed 6 million quotes to find out which occupations were most likely to make insurance claims only to find that at a shuddering 44% of healthcare workers were by far the most likely. The conclusions were based on analysis of 2013 figures and resulted in a top 50 of professions most likely to make an insurance claim.

Thinking of a change but unsure as to the best way to finance your car? Then you need a copy of my car finance book, Car Finance – A Simple Guide by Graham Hill. Click on the link below to buy the best car finance book on the market, available as a Kindle Book and Paper Back.

Next with a meagre 16% were professionals (this includes chartered surveyors and engineers). With the same percentage but in 3rd place was Finance (advisors and accountants), followed by Local Government (town planners) with 12% and Legal at 5th (probation officers/solicitors) with 8% making claims.

Of the medical profession it was GP’s most likely to make a claim with 28% making a claim in the last 5 years. That is nearly twice the national average of 13.1%. In the top ten list of jobs 8 were in healthcare with nurses, dentists and psychologists featuring highly. Professor Andrew Smith at Cardiff University, expert on occupational and health psychology, said that the stressful nature of healthcare no doubt made it top and added, ‘Stress can cause drivers to become clumsy and absent minded at the wheel.’

Many of the claims were the result of minor lapses in concentration brought about by stress and resulting in relatively minor bumps. Surprisingly car dealers had the best record of all with just 3% having made a claim in the past 5 years. Having said that, like all statistics, they aren’t all as they seem, having had Trader Insurance myself in the past it costs a fortune because it allows all named drivers on the policy to drive absolutely any car with maybe one or two restrictions.

But to get the premium down we took an excess of £1,500 so if any damage was under £1,500 we wouldn’t claim but simply pay for the repair. Even if the repair was a little more we still wouldn’t claim because the no claims discount was worth a fortune. So car traders aren’t any more responsible drivers than healthcare workers, it’s just that the costs were in favour of paying for the repair rather than making a claim.

However it doesn’t explain why a motor dealer would be quoted more for insurance if taken out in his own name than a GP! Something wrong there – or is there? By Graham Hill

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Isn’t It About Time That Blogs Were Regulated?

Wednesday, 8. January 2014

New moan started, a few years ago a journalist with about as much knowledge about all things financial as a garden fork started a blog. In fact it was started about the same time as I started mine.

The difference was that I didn’t allow every John Henry and his mate to post things on my blog, unlike my charismatic friend. If anyone wanted to post anything on my blog I would mediate and if what they wanted to post was incorrect or simply trying to sell their pet insurance policy I would trash it.

Thinking of a change but unsure as to the best way to finance your car? Then you need a copy of my car finance book, Car Finance – A Simple Guide by Graham Hill. Click on the link below to buy the best car finance book on the market, available as a Kindle Book and Paper Back.

On the other hand many other blogs would allow complete (but often well intentioned) doughnuts to express opinions online which others would then take as absolute gospel. For example I have seen someone desperate because they are facing a £1,500 charge to repair a PAS pump, 3 weeks after the manufacturer’s warranty has run out on his car, seeking advice because he’d been told the repair was outside the warranty and therefore fully chargeable.

As you know from postings on my blog this isn’t unusual. In this case the car had only covered 15,000 miles but some numbnuts said, oh dear, sadly as you are outside the warranty there is nothing you can do, chat to your bank manager and arrange a loan. Which is what the poor sod did!! So this ill informed do-gooder just cost the driver with the problem £1,500.

The truth is that under the Sale of Goods Act the driver had a legitimate claim against the supplying dealer as the goods have to be as described, fit for purpose and of satisfactory quality. The ABS pump should last as long as the car, at least 8 years, so the dealer should make at least some contribution towards the cost of repair as the item concerned would appear to not be of satisfactory quality.

Oh and notice I said dealer and not manufacturer, the claim is against the company that sold you the goods, not the manufacturer. It’s up to the dealer to seek compensation from the manufacturer. This is just one of many pieces of advice given by ignorant subscribers with no legal knowledge whatsoever.

Sometimes on this and other blogs the advice has been accurate at the time it was given in say 2009 but the law has since changed and the advice is now wrong. So if you are one of those people that searches through blogs for accurate information, tread very carefully, the advice you follow could cost you a fortune.

It’s about time that blogs were properly policed before too many people catch a serious cold. 2nd moan over! By Graham Hill

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Should You Use A Dealer Or Broker For Car Finance?

Wednesday, 2. November 2011

A few days ago I had a very interesting chat with a referred client. He had always obtained his cars from dealerships in the belief that this was the best way to do it. He had moved from HP to PCP as it removed the risk in the resale value of the car. His last two cars, funded on PCP, were simply handed back to the leasing company as they weren’t worth the Read more

What Not To Do If You Have A Problem With A Dealer

Thursday, 29. September 2011

I recently had a note from someone who was having major problems with a dealership over a fault that developed in his new car. The problem was taking far too long to resolve and the client was getting very frustrated. Even contacting the manufacturer didn’t seem to work so in a fit of rage he called the finance company, who legally still owned the car, Read more

Handling A Complaint With A Dealer

Monday, 19. September 2011

The motor industry gets a bad press when it comes to the way it treats customers but I feel certain that the vast majority of car dealers act honourably and fairly. However, treating customers fairly doesn’t make for good headlines so I tend to only read the stories about the atrocious behaviour of just a few dealers when the customer, normally a Read more

Delayed New Car Deliveries Cause Part Exchange Problems

Tuesday, 2. August 2011

Now here’s an interesting scenario. As I’ve widely reported over the last 18 months or so deliveries of new cars have become a nightmare. All too often the dealer has called and said that delivery has been delayed not just by a couple of weeks but in some cases months. In most cases we’ve been able to get around the problem by extending the current Read more

Lease Advertisers Are Not Usually Leasing Companies

Sunday, 15. May 2011

I seem to cover this subject frequently but in case you have only recently started to see my newsletter/blog let me explain the relationship between the person advertising lease deals on the Internet, dealers and you. First of all the people advertising on the Internet, often called something like amazingcarleasing.co.uk are not actually leasing Read more