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Ask Maverick Your Own Question
Maverick, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 6392
Experience:  20 years of proefessional experience
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I signed a contract with Monitronics home security system.

Customer Question

I signed a contract with Monitronics for a home security system. My wife and I were unhappy and told the agent within the 3 days we didn't want it. He didn't return our phone calls until after the 3 days we could cancel. I called the main office and complained but to no avail. Also, I didn't receive a copy of the contract until 35 days later. The contract provided a stipulation we could cancel within 30 days by signing a form attached to the contract and mailing it to them within the 30 day period. Of course that was not possible because of not receiving the contract copy until after the 30 day period. Now, I am stuck wit payments of $59/month for 36 months. This company has a long history of complaints from consumers. Can you help me?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Maverick replied 2 years ago.
Welcome! My name is Maverick. I very much enjoy what I do and I hope that you will benefit from this information.
I don't understand one thing: How did you sign a contract with them if you did not receive a copy till 35 days later?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Expert:  Maverick replied 2 years ago.
No, I am still here...looking at your question now..
Expert:  Maverick replied 2 years ago.
1. When was the first time you saw the 30 day cancellation form?
2. When was the first time you learned that such a right existed?
3. Was this a home solicitation? Is that why you are saying you had a 3 day right to cancel?
4. Do you have proof of your cancellation call - date time etc?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
The contract was signed on March 3 2015. The agent, who came to my door, didn't give me a copy of the contract until April 5, 2015. I believe the agent purposely used these delay tactics to prevent me from cancelling within the prescribed time period. I sent a cancellation notice to the Monitronics office return receipt requested on May 13th stating that I didn't receive a copy of the cancellation notice included in the contract until April 5th. The contract was singed by me on March 3rd. I didn't know such a right to cancel until I read the contract after receiving a copy on April 5th. The contract stated the cancellation notice must be sent within 30 days which would have been before April 3rd. I don't remember the exact date I called the main office but it was sometime in the first week of March when I told them we were unhappy with the agent. because he didn.t return our call within the first three days. His name is***** 480=466=7551. He told the main office he did return our calls but there was no answer which was not true. We are a retired couple and always at home.
Expert:  Maverick replied 2 years ago.
At the link above, under Article 2, you will find AZ's Uniform Declaratory Judgment Act. Under this act, you can sue the alarm company for a court order that says that the contract is null and void because you canceled within 30 days of your receiving a written copy of the signed contract and because you were not informed of such right at the time of signing it and did not come to know about it until after you received the contract.
Or, because this door to door salesman ignored your 3 day cancellation notice, if this was a home solicitation either by phone or walk-up salesman.
The law below shows that the court can fashion an equitable remedy based on FAIRNESS [i.e. no opportunity to read the contract at the time of signing and thus 30 day right to cancel time period should not begin to run until after you received a copy of the contract].
Arizona has long abolished the distinction between legal and equitable action, see § 425 R.S. 1913. In McRae v. Lois Grunow Memorial Clinic, 40 Ariz. 496, 14 P.2d 478 (1932), we said:
"It should be remembered that forms of action are abolished under our judicial system. They are civil actions and are to be stated without distinction between actions at law and in equity and also without distinction as to the nature of the relief demanded. Section 3746, Revised Code of 1928. And it is provided that judgments shall conform to the pleadings, the nature of the case proved, and the verdict, if any, and shall give all the relief either in law or equity to which a party may show himself entitled." 40 Ariz. at 510, 14 P.2d at 483. (Emphasis supplied)
Seven years after this pronouncement, the policy of granting complete relief was reaffirmed by the adoption of the following language in Rule 54(d) of the Rules of Civil Procedure:
"Except as to a party against whom a judgment is entered by default, every final judgment shall grant the relief to which the party in whose favor it is rendered is entitled, even if the party has not demanded such relief in his pleadings."
The same policy is reflected in the Uniform Declaratory Judgment Act, which Arizona has adopted. Section 12-1838 reads in its relevant part:
"Further relief based on a declaratory judgment or decree may be granted whenever necessary or proper."
The Uniform Declaratory Judgment Act, McRae and Rule 54(d) seek to avoid multiplicity of actions by providing one form of action and allowing a single court to grant all suitable relief. As Justice Cardozo said in Susquehanna S.S. Co. v. Andersen & Co., 239 N.Y. 285, 294, 146 N.E. 381, 384 (1925):
"The whole body of principles, whether of law or of equity, bearing on the case, becomes the reservoir to be drawn upon by the court in enlightening its judgment."
If you do not pay, then they may sue or they may just report it as a negative history on your credit. If they sue, you can counter sue using the declaratory judgment laws above. If they do not sue and just ding your credit, then you will have to sue them and get this order that says you do not owe the money because you timely canceled. You can then use that order to have the negative credit history removed.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for the giving me rundown on the law. It looks like I filled out the cancellation form too late even after receiving it . The only other out would be to argue the 3 day cancellation where the agent did not return my phone call to cancel.
Expert:  Maverick replied 2 years ago.
At the link above you will find the 3 day right to cancel laws that are support your argument. You will have to look and see if your facts fit one or more of those circumstances.

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