Your consumer rights - provision of a service

Essay company rightsThis page explains your rights in relation to provision of a service in the UK. Remember, if you use a company that isn't UK-based, they are unlikely to be subject to UK law and so these rights will not apply. They may be subject to other laws, depending on where they are actually based.

As there are many 'companies' that operate on the Web who provide a poor service, we thought it'd be useful to provide you with an overview of your rights when dealing with a UK company who is providing a service. We really hope these terms help you exercise caution when dealing with companies through the web. Please be really careful if you use other websites claiming to be UK-based. Although many sites make this claim, we know of just 2 other such companies that are genuinely here in the UK. The safest way to find out is to ask to visit their offices and get an address out of them - and check it out, if you can! If a company isn't UK-based, you won't be covered by UK law and it may be difficult to get your money back if things go wrong.

If you're looking for our terms instead, try here.

UK law on the provision of services

'Services' include having an essay written for you, having your own work marked, and other day-to-day services like hiring a plumber or signing up for gym membership.

When you pay for a service, it must be provided:

Where goods are supplied as part of a service, they should not be faulty. For example an oven fitted as part of a new kitchen should work.

Cooling-off period - your right to change your mind

You will usually get seven working days to cancel your order and get all your money back if you buy a service:

If a new service starts immediately, you normally can't cancel unless the person/company you're buying the service from has failed to give you information required by law.

In the case of essay writing, marking etc services, these are custom services provided exactly to your specific needs so you won't have a cooling off period. The expert starts work on your project as soon as you make your payment. However, for this to apply, the website you're dealing with needs to give you some information. For example, they must explain to you how to cancel your order (in our case, this can be done through email or by phone any time before making your payment). They must also give you information about any after-sales service. In our case, our after-sales team can be contacted through your secure customer area. The website must also provide an address for complaints. Ours is available on our contact page.

Quotes

Before a service provider starts a job you should have in writing:

We provide quotations through our instant quote calculator which include the type of work, price and delivery date. We confirm all of this by email (which also appears in your customer area.

Unfair terms in contracts

You may be asked to sign a contract for the service you buy. It is illegal for any terms in the contract to unfairly favour the trader (eg no warning of price increases).

Even if a term is unfair, you should get legal advice before you break the terms of a contract.

If you're worried about an unfair term in a contract, try contacting the Citizen's Advice Bureau.

Cancelling a service

If you want to cancel a service, check the terms and conditions in your contract to see what you need to do. You may need to give notice, eg continue with the contract for 28 days or pay a cancellation fee.

As mentioned above, there are some instances where you cannot cancel - for example, in the case of custom essay writing, the work has already been started for you. In this case, double check that the company has provided you with all the information they have to by law, as if they haven't, they can't waive your right to cancel.

You may lose any deposit you have paid upfront, eg to confirm your booking or to cover the cost of materials needed for work.

If there's a problem with a service

If the trader doesn't deliver the service you have agreed, you should first give them a chance to fix the problem for free. Tell them about the fault and use quotes or contracts as evidence of what they agreed to provide.

If the problem is minor, you could ask for a discount, eg if your mobile phone has no service for a few days.

If the trader can't fix the fault or refuses to fix it, pay them for the value of the work they've done and hire someone else.

In this case, you can ask the trader to:

You may have to go to court to get this money from the trader. That's why it's best to choose a company based in the UK (assuming you're UK based) as it will be far more difficult to get money back from a company based in India, Pakistan, etc.

How you pay and your rights

If you've paid by a credit card and the service costs more than £100, you may have additional rights to a refund.

If you've paid using Visa, Mastercard or Maestro, you may be able to claim your money back through their 'chargeback' scheme. This will cover you if there's a problem with the service or the business has stopped trading. You will need to contact the card company to make a claim.

If you pay by Paypal, you can raise a dispute and escalate it to a claim if you're not satisfied. Technically, the purchase cover shouldn't apply to services as far as we can work out, but in our experience with other companies, Paypal do tend to rule in favour of the consumer and you stand a good chance of getting your money back.

If you need to make a complaint

If you need to complain about a service, always go back to the service provider. Also check any guarantee you have to see what protection it gives you, eg you might have a 10-year guarantee for building work.

If you don't hear back from the service provider or don't agree with their response, you should make a complaint in writing.

If you've paid using credit (eg a credit card), you can also complain to the finance company .

There is a lot more really useful information on your rights on the Citizen's Advice website, which this page is based on.

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