Can A Consumer Reject A New Or Used Car?

Rejecting your car under the Consumer Rights Act 2015

When rejecting a new car or used car, many consumers and business of sale are not aware of the operation of the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (“the CRA 2015”). In the event of a rejection, the CRA 2015 allows certain rights to both the consumer and the business.

Short term right to reject a car – Within the first 30 days from purchase

If a consumer has purchased a new or used car and:

  1. Within 30 days from purchase it has developed a fault; and
  2. The fault was not present at the point of purchase

Then a consumer can reject the car and receive a full refund. No deductions can be made. Also, a consumer does not have to accept any repairs or replacements offered by the dealership of sale.

Final right to reject – The first 6 months from purchase

If a consumer has purchased a new or used car and:

  1. A fault develops before the expiry of the first 6 months from purchase; and
  2. The fault has developed after the first 30 days from purchase has passed

Then a consumer may elect to reject the car. However, the dealership of sale may be able to apply a reasonable deduction for use and this may reduce the total refund.

Also, prior to exercising their right to reject, a consumer must give the dealership of sale a one-time opportunity to repair the car. If this one-time attempt to repair the car fails then a consumer may consider the final right to reject.

Final right to reject – 6 months after purchase

If a consumer has purchased a new or used car and:

  • A fault occurs after the expiry of the first 6 months;

Then the burden of proof shifts from the dealership of sale unto the consumer. The consumer must now show that the fault was present at the point of sale. Therefore, the passage of time makes rejecting a car more difficult, though not impossible. Thus, the longer a consumer has a car and the more use a consumer has from it, the harder it may be for a consumer to reject a car based upon a defect that manifests after the passage of time.

How long do I have?

A consumer has up to 6 years to bring a claim from the point of purchase. Also, not every issue that arises in a car will mean that such a right to reject arises or that a consumer can get a full refund, as each case varies on its merits. As such, it is best to seek legal advice as soon as possible to ensure you get a clear understanding as how to best resolve your issue.

Can I reject a car? – How Nelsons can help

Matthew Clarke is a Trainee Solicitor in our expert Dispute Resolution team.

If you or your business has an on-going automotive dispute, please contact our team in DerbyLeicester or Nottingham for advice on 0800 024 1976 or via our online form.