CanI sue based on a verbal representation?

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CanI sue based on a verbal representation?

Right after my we signed a contract for taekwondo for my son, we noticed it was for a year. We informed the owner that we were not interested in a year and wanted month-month. He said that was fine. A year later we signed a renewal, thinking its needed for automatic withdrawals. We were still under the impression that we would not be held to a year contract. A few months later my son quit. I called but the owner told me that it is best to wait until the year is up in case my son decides that he wants to go back. Then they will count how many months he didn’t go and give us refund for those months. Now the year is up and he denies saying any of this – no refund. Can I take him to court?

Asked on April 15, 2011 under General Practice, Minnesota

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You can try, but I do not think that it is a hopeful situation. Generally speaking, you entered in to and fulfilled a year long contract and never had an issue, correct?  Then you renewed the contract based upon the original terms without modifying the agreement in writing.  Oral modifications are not allowed to written contracts as a general rule and I bet that your contract states that as well.  Read it.  I am not saying that you can not try I just doubt you will be successful. Now, what I think that you can do is play upon the idea of good will and good business sense for the owner.  If the public is dissatisfied with how you are servicing them the it would not be in your best interest as an owner to ignore that.  Word of mouth travels fast.  Impart that to him in a non-threatening way.  Also explore the idea of a credit for the months you lost as an option.  Good luck to you.


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