Airth Castle Hotel Limited, the company that manages Airth Castle has confirmed that the popular wedding venue has went into liquidation.
This will leave consumers with holidays, weddings, and other events booked wondering what they can do to get their money back. The options are different, depending on the cost of the booking and the method of payment used.
If the booking was made as part of a package, or through a third-party travel agent or company, you should reach out to them in the first instance to see if there are other measures in place.
How can people with bookings claim their money back?
Section 75 Claims (for those who booked using credit cards)
Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 states that a credit card company is jointly and severally liable for breach of contract or misrepresentation by a trader.
This means that a claim can be made against the credit card provider if a purchase was made with a trader that misrepresents the goods/services or breaches contract (in this case cancelled bookings).
The following applies to Section 75 claims:
- Claims can only be made for credit cards and cannot be used for debit card purchases.
- Claims can only be made for payments that are over £100 but under £30,000.
- Claims cannot be made against a trader if they use a third party to accept payment.
You should contact the credit card provider, preferably in writing, explaining the situation and telling them that you wish to make a Section 75 claim. You should ask for the full amount that you paid and any compensation (if required – this must be less than the amount paid).
Chargeback (for those who booked using debit cards / credit card purchases under £100)
Chargeback claims can be made in situations where payment has been made to a trader and the transaction has been fraudulent or disputed. Unlike section 75, it can be used for credit and debit cards, however, only for credit card purchases that were under £100.
A claim for chargeback can be made by contacting the card provider, preferably in writing, telling them that you want to initiate a claim. You should ask for the full amount that you paid and compensation if required (this must be less than the amount paid).
The trader may challenge the refund from their account. It is advisable to keep the money if the challenge is successful, and a repayment is made. If the trader’s challenge is successful, you can use the appeal process of the card provider to contest it.
Contact the Administrator (Other methods of payment)
At the time of writing, an administrator is yet to be appointed for Airth Castle Hotel Limited. When a company enters administration or is ‘liquidated’, an administrator is usually appointed who assesses the assets the company holds and the creditors that they owe to, in this case, this includes customers with bookings.
Once an evaluation is made, creditors are prioritised and settled, however this is not usually the full amount owed, often only pennies for each pound owed.
If you are unable to claim back through Section 75 or Chargeback, you should look out for more information on the administrator handling the liquidation.
Colin Mathieson, spokesperson for Advice Direct Scotland, said:
“This announcement will have left staff and customers with questions about what this means for them.
“Consumers with holidays, weddings, and other events booked will be wondering what they can do to get their money back.
“If the booking was made as part of a package, or through a third-party travel agent or company, you should contact them in the first instance to see what measures are in place.
“Those who paid with a debit card, can make a chargeback claim to their card provider.
“If you made the purchase on a credit card for over the value of £100, you could make a claim to your card provider using Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act.
“Those unable to claim back through Section 75 or chargeback, could look out for more information from the administrator handling the liquidation.
“For those concerned about losing their jobs we have put together a guide to redundancy, specifically what employees can do if their employer enters administration.
“It’s important to remember that help is available, and anyone who is worried can contact one of our specialist advisers for free, impartial and practical advice.”
If you would like advice or guidance on rights in relation to cancelled or disrupted travel, or any other consumer matter, you can contact consumeradvice.scot on 0808 164 6000. We are open from 9am to 5pm, Monday-Friday.