Getting Out of a Door-to-door Contract

Most of us connect and sympathize with door-to-door salespeople. They are out in the elements, working hard to put bread on their tables. The conversation begins with smiles as the salesperson wants to ask you a question, show you something, or ask you for a favor. Then comes the pitch that makes us contemplate the need of the product being sold. As we try to weigh out the product, ask questions, and peruse the contract, we feel confident and we sign assuming we can always get out of a door-to-door company contract later.

A few days later we see the bill on our credit card or bank account and you start to worry, possibly even feeling a little buyer’s remorse. You call the company to cancel your contract as your salesperson said you could do if you weren’t 100% satisfied. As you talk to the manager, they explain that the contract you signed locks you in for the long haul and if you want to get out, you have to pay 1/3 of the final cost upfront. Your blood begins to boil. The salesperson was so kind, funny, and warmhearted. They said you could basically cancel whenever you want with no penalty. What a liar! What a thief! How could they have deceived you so?!

Well now what? It’s a legal contract. The fine print mirrors the brisk language of the manager on the phone. If you keep going it will cost you thousands, and if you cancel now, it will be a 1/3 of that. But maybe there is still hope yet.

Option 1: A Loophole

Many people aren’t aware that in many cities around the United States, the door-to-door salesperson is required by law to get a license or badge allowing them permission to go door-to-door in your city. If they didn’t get one, there is a good chance that the company illegally approached you in the first place. Call your city and find out if the salesperson/company got permission to sell door-to-door in your city. If not, you could call the company and threaten them with this information or provide this information to your lawyer.

From my experience, asking about a city provided license upfront is a great way to get the salesperson out the door and on their way. You might even save your neighbors some headache.

*Advice Disclaimer: Top Moms Magazine and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisers before engaging in any transaction