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Does MA Law allow me to Cancel a Contract within Three Days?

My wife and I went to Buy Direct, signed a contract, and paid $5300 to join the club. We have changed our minds and would like to cancel the agreement. The papers we signed said there are no refunds. Does Massachusetts law allow us to cancel the contract and get our money back? -- (Posted by Bob on the Forum Chat Room)


We signed to purchase a car and now think it was not such a great deal. Under Massachusetts law, how long after we sign a contract do we have to cancel? (Posted by SMF on the Forum Chat Room). (The following response was posted by Attorney Lisa Sigman of Wakefield, MA)


There are only a couple of types of contract for which Massachusetts law allows a "cooling off period" (granting time to the consumer to reconsider and cancel without penalty—within a prescribed time period).  The first is health club/gym memberships. Second, Massachusetts and Federal regualtions provide for a cooling-Off Rule for contracts resulting from door-to-door sales for certain specified goods.  To be clear, these rules only apply to sales made door-to-door and away from usual place of business of the merchant.  All other contracts, commercial & personal, are effective and binding as per the terms of the agreement at the time of signing (unless otherwise stated in the agreement). There is no blanket 3-day revocation period. Bob - you will likely not be able to get out of the Buy Direct Contract, but I wish you luck. (A very close friend of mine had the same thing happen, and I looked into it for her.) The contract is well written and legal, and though the sales tactics are high pressure, they have prevailed in law suits against them initiated by consumers like you. Despite complaints with the Massachusetts A.G., no state action has been initiated against them. So, for now, their actions are legal and above-board. My advice is to take full advantage of the program, so that you can at least make it worth the expense of the membership.


For more information or to post a question, visit our MA Consumer Law Discussion Forum.

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