I signed over my animal – How do I overturn it?

“I signed over my pets.  The RSPCA said I would be prosecuted/they would fetch the police/have me arrested/seize all my animals/notify social services and have my children taken away if I didn’t.  But I love my animals and want them back.  What can I do?”

These are some of the heartbreaking words that The SHG hears regularly on the helpline (0744 99 89 411).

The first thing to do is take legal advice from a solicitor who is a specialist in animal welfare law to ensure that you will not make matters worse.  Phone The SHG on 0744 99 89 411 and we will give you a list of solicitors.

Next you need to notify the RSPCA that you are rescinding the sign over.  The wording will be different if someone other than the owner signed the animals over.

Send the following e-mail to these e-mail addresses.  Fill in the details in the [brackets]

chris.sherwood@rspca.org.uk

enqserv@rspca.org.uk

ray.goodfellow@rspca.org.uk

and fax it to:

RSPCA fax no’s

0303 123 0100
0303 123 0284

The title is:

For urgent attention of the legal department – Rescinding signover

In the body write:

I rescind signover of the [animals] removed by the RSPCA from [wherever, whenever by whoever] on the grounds that it was done under duress when I was upset and had no benefit of legal advice or medical attention.

Yours sincerely

[Your name]

Or if someone other than you signed the animals over, in the body write:

I rescind signover of the [animals] removed by the RSPCA from [wherever, whenever by whoever] on the grounds that it was done under duress when the person who signed was upset and had no benefit of legal advice or medical attention and they had no authority from the owner to sign the animals over.

Follow up with hard copy by mail that has to be signed for to:

RSPCA Legal Department,
Wilberforce Way,
Southwater,
Horsham
RH13 9RS

The document you have signed is effectively a consumer contract.  If you had signed to buy double glazing you would have 14 days cooling off period in which you could rescind the purchase.  The reason for this is that people who sell items to you are considered to have too much influence when doing so in your own home or on the phone.

Now think about how much more influence the RSPCA have when demanding that you sign over your animals.

If the RSPCA do not respond either speak to your specialist solicitor or ring the Consumer Advice help line on 03454 04 05 06.

Contact the Charity Commission and tell them what has happened.  Stress that you are making a complaint about a charity whose actions are bringing charities into disrepute in the minds of the public.

Make an appointment to see your MP, your local councillors, any politicians you can access and ask them for help.

Consider talking to the local media.  Newspapers or radio are always on the lookout for local stories of interest.  Again, you should take legal advice before doing this to ensure that you are not damaging your case.

Finally, please let us know how you get on.  If you run into problems we will do our best to help.

 

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