Couple forced to cancel wedding due to pandemic now venue refuses to refund deposit

Posted at 11:01 PM, Jul 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-17 04:55:44-04

CLINTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) — A Sterling Heights couple is pitted against a wedding venue over a deposit. The couple says they were forced to cancel their wedding party at the Imperial House in Clinton Township due to the pandemic.

The venue is refusing to budge on returning the deposit citing a contract. The couple booked the location in 2019, prior to the pandemic. It should have been the most exciting day of Fahmi Islam and his bride's life. Islam said they had more than 750 invited guests to a party on June 28.

"As I explained [to the manager at Imperial House], it's not about the money it's about the principal itself,” Islam said.

The couple was faced with no other option than to cancel due to the pandemic. Islam gave Imperial House a $1,000 deposit.

"I explained to her due to this pandemic everyone should be entitled to get a refund,” Islam said.

He provided a copy of the contract that said, “The deposit is non-refundable unless otherwise agreed in writing by the banquet manager.”

A banquet manager said they offered the couple options.

"It simply states it's non-refundable but we've given so many other options to help,” the manager said. “They're more than welcome to use that money towards an event in the next year or year in a half."

The manager said the business is family owned and struggling amid the pandemic. They also said other couples choose to rebook and some gave up their deposit.

Islam said due to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order, the venue could not accommodate a fraction of those guest.

"The limo company that I booked with provided my refund right away," Islam said. "Another banquet hall for a small get together for a pre-rehearsal provided my refund. This is the only banquet hall giving me a problem."