I signed a contract and now I want out of it, do I have 24 hours to rescind?

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I signed a contract and now I want out of it, do I have 24 hours to rescind?

Signed a contract with Extended Stay America today, 07/13/10; term is 30 days; rate is$999. We have had problems with the rooms, the smell, and are generally dissatisfied. We have 2 rooms booked and I signed the contract for a 30 day stay only. I now have found other accommodations but fear I cannot get a refund for the $999 per room, which was paid for today by credit card. Do I have recourse? Do I have 24 hours in IL to change my mind?

Asked on July 13, 2010 under General Practice, Illinois

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You would have to seek help from an attorney in your area as to the "24 hour rule" you think might apply.  In contract law there is a 3 day right to rescind rule but it applies to only certain types of contracts. 

But dealing with the basics of contract law read what it says.  Look for the sections that deal with the accommodations and regarding "habitability."   See if they have "breached" or broken the agreement.  Ask an attorney if the contract constitutes a "lease" and is the "Landlord" subject to the same warranties that the premises are fit to be lived in?  Be aware, though, that landlords have a right to "cure" or fix a problem in the unit.  What other problems do you have? It may be enough to consider the lease void or voidable.  But someone needs to read it with you and discuss your problems.  Good luck.  

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

1) It's a common myth that there are 24 hours to change one's mind on a contract--there is not.

1a) Do double check the contract; does it provide for some time or period to change your mind or get a refund? If it does, the facility must honor that term.

2) However, if the quality is not what you signed up for, you may have grounds to get out of the contract on the basis of that; for example, that the rooms smell or are not of reasonable commercial quality or indeed (if it's bad enough) inhabitable.

2a) However, simply being "dissatisfied" is not valid grounds to rescind a contract; the rooms must not be fit for their purpose.

3) Note that under (2) above, the management of the hotel could either (a) get the rooms in fit shape or (b) provide alternative rooms (in the same facility) that are acceptable; if they fix the issue, you'd still be bound.

Ergo, do not put money down elsewhere until you've resolved the matter and know if you can get out of the contract.


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