Can you get out of a contract if it is within 3 hours of signing?

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Can you get out of a contract if it is within 3 hours of signing?

I signed up for a social club and within 2 1/2 hours decided not to do it. However I signed their agreement. The salesperson said oh just sign it, it’s OK because you can get out of it anytime without penalty or still having to pay for the program. I specifically asked if it was a situation wherein where you still have to pay to get out of the agreement. What can I do?

Asked on March 16, 2011 under General Practice, Virginia

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

What you are referring to here is a "right of rescission" or "cooling off period" (typically 3 days).  This is a legal tool which provides consumers with the right to cancel certain contracts that they have entered into.  This right of rescission for contracts is not applied to all cases however, contrary to popular belief.  It only applies to a select few type of transactions.  In VA for example, door-to-door type unsolicited sales.  If you signed up for the service and sought the service out, then it was not an unsolicited sale.  Consequently, the law doesn't appear to apply to your situation.  That being the case, you are bound by the terms of the contract.

That all having been said, since the details of your case are not fully stated, you may have some rights under state law.  The best thing for you to do is to contact the department of consumer affairs (or VA's equivalent).


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