Ask Andy: 3-day "cooling-off" rule - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Ask Andy: 3-day "cooling-off" rule

Posted: Updated:
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC TV) - I just sent another one.

It's another e-mail an unlucky viewer will not want to read -- another answer a viewer doesn't want to hear.

You see, this particular viewer is in the middle of a car deal gone bad. He wants to return the car. He wants his money back. He wants to invoke the federal 3-day cooling off rule.

Congress codified the rule in 1972. Its intent was to protect consumers inside their homes from risky door-to-door sales or from companies selling their wares at temporary business locations.

I had to break the bad news to the viewer that the rule does not apply to the sale of automobiles.

In fact, there is no state law either - be it Tennessee, Mississippi or Arkansas -- that mandates any kind of "buyer's remorse" right (legally called a right of rescission) in virtually any kind of purchase. It all comes down to a consumer's sales contract or to the retailer's return policy.

The federal 3-day cooling off rule only applies when a company is selling a product or service that costs $25 or more at a location other than its place of business. Think door-to-door sales -- or that cell-phone company's kiosk inside a department store.

In those situations, the seller must tell buyers they have the right to cancel for a full refund within three days.

According to the General Services Administration's Federal Citizen Information Center, the 3-day cooling off rule does not apply to:

* PURCHASES MADE BY PHONE OR MAIL

* PURCHASES MADE ONLINE

* SALES UNDER CONTRACT FROM THE SELLER'S PERMANENT LOCATION

* IF YOU SIGNED A WAIVER OF YOUR COOLING-OFF RIGHTS

* IF THE PURCHASE WAS PROPERTY, INSURANCE, SECURITIES OR A VEHICLE

* IF YOU CAN'T RETURN THE ITEM IN THE SAME CONDITION IN WHICH YOU BOUGHT IT

* IF YOU BOUGHT ARTS OR CRAFTS AT A FAIR, SHOPPING MALL, CIVIC CENTER OR SCHOOL

If you charged the product or service to your credit card, you shouldn't have to worry about a cooling-off rule. Just dispute the charge with your credit card issuer, and you should be golden.

Copyright 2012 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • April Mugshots

    April Mugshots

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 11:48 AM EDT2014-04-15 15:48:25 GMT
    James SiebenthalJames Siebenthal
    The following are mugshots and charges of individuals arrested between April 1-4 by the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office.More >>
    The following are mugshots and charges of individuals arrested between April 1-4 by the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office.More >>
  • 7-year-old girl writes book after mother's death

    7-year-old girl writes book after mother's death

    Friday, April 18 2014 8:31 AM EDT2014-04-18 12:31:56 GMT
    (WMC-TV) - Most 7-year-old girls are playing dress up and reading books, but one Mid-South girl is the exception—not just reading but writing books. Shiloh Sanders talked about the inspiration behind herMore >>
    Most 7-year-old girls are playing dress up and reading books, but one Mid-South girl is the exception—not just reading but writing books.More >>
  • Teen killed in crash after prom

    Teen killed in crash after prom

    Saturday, April 19 2014 3:47 PM EDT2014-04-19 19:47:48 GMT
    (WMC-TV) - A young man's life was taken too soon. It was supposed to be a high school memory of a lifetime for Andrew Archer, but prom night turned into a tragic night for his family and friends. His promMore >>
    It was supposed to be a high school memory of a lifetime for Andrew Archer, but prom night turned into a tragic night for his family and friends.More >>
Powered by WorldNow