Me and my partner are getting married on 24th September this year. We had booked our venue at a members social club, the licensee was planning our wedding, as in ie, sit down meal, buffet and venue decoration and DJ. We found out last week, after paying most of the cost to the licensee, that she has run off with our money. The venue which is owned by Westbourne Leisure has bought in new managers who informed us that the prior manager had took off with our money. We have receipts of payments made. Can you tell us if Westbourne Leisure are responsible for paying our money back, we dont know which way to turn?
I'm sorry to hear your awful news.
Obviously I'm guessing that you don't have wedding insurance in place which covers such an eventuality in its Terms and Conditions.
Assuming not then this becomes more of a consumer protection issue. I fail to see how the leisure company are not liable given that your contract was with them and not the rogue individual. The key will be proving this through valid documentation. Without knowing the full facts it is difficult for me to give you a full answer. But there is some light at the end of the tunnel.
Under the terms of Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act if you’ve paid for something by credit card and it is over £100 and there is a breach of contract, the credit card company will be jointly liable and you can often claim the money back from them. This means that the deposit paid to your wedding venue may be covered if you've paid some of it by credit card.
But the first thing to do is contact the Citizens Advice Bureau. They provide free, independent, confidential and impartial advice to everyone on their rights. If you call them and relay full details of your circumstances they will talk through all the options open to you including any potential claim under the Consumer Credit Act, if applicable. The service they provide is fantastic.
Here is a link to the Citizens Advice Bureau contact details.
Please let me know how things work out for you.
Money to the Masses