Consumer Protection Law
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If you were told something that was false, that caused you to enter into a contract, that was a fraudulent misstatement.
The fact that you were told by a sales representative that the termination fee would be paid so that there was no out of pocket expense is a material misstatement. If you relied on this statement in making the decision to purchase the new service and they failed to provide that termination fee, you would have an actionable statement for fraud.
The only issue that may possible occur is that the additional fee was not included in your written agreement. This is likely not determinative of your case as the verbal statement was key (and more importantly was not contradicted by your written agreement). The company itself is bound by the oral statement of its agent the salesman.
To enforce your rights under a cause of action for fraud, you can file a claim in small claims court. California's small claims court allows for claims of up to $10,000.00. The following are the links to helpful publications by the California State Courts, and the California Department of Consumer Affairs:
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Thank you Bill, for wading through my unedited letter! Your information was very helpful. As I was skimming through it I was speaking with representatives with Vivint Alarm Systems. I had proposed that Vivint, and the sub (?) company for whom the rep was a go between (?) and the representative/sales person--that we all take responsibility for the mistake for ethical and moral reasons. To do that we would all pay 1/3 of the 1,030. that Monitronics wanted for me to pay so that I could then be released from the contract.
Thanks be to God--AND to YOU the parties involved agreed to do the right thing so that the business relationship could be maintained and we could more importantly learn a good lesson AND feel good that we had treated each other in a manner that honored our humanity. That touched my heart!
I then told the parties I would like to get back to them tomorrow to discuss the final solution. The reason I gave was that I wanted to speak with Monitronics. You see, Monitronics signed me up verbally over the phone for another extended two years. This was in 2011. The verbal agreement was made when I was under duress. I had made the call initially to rep[ort to Monitronics that the most vulnerable window in my house was left unsecured for one year! They did not take responsibility by offering me a free year--to make up for the year they had failed to secure my home. Instead they offered some free technology that did not make up in cost at all for the one year...They sent out a tech which I was made to pay for to install the new equipment.
Then, they asked me to extend my contract for two more years. I do not remember this because I was so emotional about the year my house was unsecured. Monitronics said I verbally agreed to renew and extend the contract. I can't believe I would have done that--but they clain they have a recording of my voice! I wonder if they ever sent me a copy to sign re: this matter. I do not think they did!
It would be wrong for any of us --Vivint, the Rep, and my husband and myself to pay for the breaking of the contract at all--for the two year extended...And I think Monitronics should make good on the one year they did not fulfil their contract and protect me.
They made me believe that I had no recourse and the best they could do was to give me more technology equipment.
What would you say to that, Sir? Thank you so much for your help! I appreciate you very much! Deana
Thank you for the info, Bill. The new company has talked about the fact that under Ca law they believe that the old company should have given me a copy in writing re the verbal agreement.
There is literally no proof that an agreement was ever made at all.
In a few minutes, I will speak to the first company and ask them if they will send me a signed copy of the agreement to extend.
The issue of the year my house being poorly monitored is no longer an issue for me. The point you made is clear. I also realize it is an issue separate from the other complaints.
Getting out of the contract, however, could be a reasonable expectation of mine because as it appears the former security company is amiss to say the least--it is their word against mine--unless of course, as I said they can provide legitimate proof that I made the agreement.
I guess my question to you would be, am I correct in asking for written proof--a document with my name signed by me?
Is a verbal agreement strong enough? Or would they have to prove that they at least have a recording of my voice?
Thank you! Deana
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