What are my rights to cancel a contract that was altered after I signed it?

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What are my rights to cancel a contract that was altered after I signed it?

I signed a contract with a credit card processing company, electronically on the salesman’s tablet. Rather than minutes to my email, it was days before I received it, and it was altered.The salesman also told me several lies. I no longer want to do business with this company but they say I will need to pay almost $2,000 cancellation fee, which I do not believe I owe since they altered the contract after I had signed. Also, I signed a separate non-cancelable lease with a third-party company for the credit card machine. That lease was not altered, but I do not need their machine since I will not be using the processing company. Should I sue? What can I expect if I refuse to pay the cancellation fee or the equipment lease?

Asked on February 8, 2015 under Business Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Generally speaking, there is no right to cancel a contract after having signed it. If the contract was modified without your consent, you may be able to void it for fraud (though it's also possible that a court would choose to enforce the contract as it existed when you signed it, prioor to the modification). You could also potentially void a contract for fraud if you were lied to prior to signing, in order to induce you to enter into the contract. However, a contract that had no lies, fraud, etc. connected with it, like the rental for the machine, is on to whichg you would still be  bound, even if you no longer need the machine--changes in one party's circumstances or needs after a contract is signed has no effect on the contract's validity or enforceability.


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