Short Term Leasing Return Standards

Return Standards on Short Term Car Lease

Return Standards for Short Term Leasing

Return Conditions for a Short Term Lease do not fall into the standard wear and tear guide that come with longer term vehicles. We like to be as transparent as possible when you take a short term vehicle. We provide a returns guide within the vehicle, it forms part of the contract and occasionally we will send you a guide when you are returning your vehicle to ourselves.

If your short term lease vehicle is being collected, then the driver is not qualified to inspect the car. Therefore he will do a walk around the vehicle, marking any visible damage. Should the vehicle be dirty on collection, then he is within his right to mark this down. A further inspection, by a qualified inspector will take place at our offices or at the suppliers premises.

We have listed here the up to date return standards including a PDF download of our booklet.

Download Return Conditions for Short Term Leasing Vehicles

Short Term Leasing Return Conditions



It is agreed that all end of term excess mileage and rectification work will be handled and invoiced by Cocoon Vehicles and/or their agent, directly with the Hirer. All invoice costs will be collected by Direct Debit or payment mandate. Should a Direct Debit be cancelled it will incur a £25.00 plus VAT (£30.00 inclusive) administration charge. The vehicle condition should be within the terms and conditions of the Fair Wear and Tear guide listed below.


All vehicles must be checked by the Hirer upon delivery and any defects, damage or missing items noted on the delivery agents paperwork. Cocoon Vehicles must be notified in writing within 1 working day of the vehicle delivery of any faults. Defects, damage or missing items noted after 1 working day from delivery will be deemed the responsibility of the Hirer.

Reporting Damage

Any repairs expecting to cost more than £1,000, or worth more than 10% of the value of the vehicle, either to the bodywork or mechanical must be reported to Cocoon Vehicles prior to the authorisation of the repair. A manufacturer approved repair agent will be required to complete repairs, according to the respective manufacturer’s specifications.

Any vehicle that is stolen, deemed to be beyond economic repair or has major damage, the Hirer’s insurance agent will be obliged to purchase the vehicle. Major damage shall mean repair or replacement of any internal panels (excluding minor brackets, gusset, rear panels and front panels) and/or sill panels. Any damage noted at de-fleet stage which exceeds £1,000, Cocoon Vehicles reserves the right to insist the Hirer purchases the vehicle within 10 days. Damage resulting in a VCAR condition alert being placed against the vehicle may also result in the Hirer having to purchase this vehicle; this will be at Cocoon Vehicles’ discretion.

Body Damage

All damage must be repaired as and when it occurs. All work must be undertaken by a manufacturer approved repairer to acceptable standards with any anti corrosion guarantees taken into consideration. Proof of repairs and invoices must be provided within 72 hours when requested by Cocoon Vehicles. Vehicles subject to sub-standard repairs, even after inspection, which have not been repaired by a manufacturer approved repairer, may require post collection remedial work and this will be chargeable back to the Hirer along with any loss of revenue, period rentals and/or loss of value.


A maximum of two dents per panel will be accepted providing they are smaller than 10mm in diameter. If the number of dents exceeds two per panel, are greater than 10mm in diameter or have broken the paint is deemed as unacceptable. Any dent, irrespective of size, on a swage line will be deemed as unacceptable and any remedial work carried out will be chargeable to the Hirer.


Chipping to forward facing surface may be acceptable, notably to the bonnet, grille, valance and front wing, providing they do not exceed 5% of the total area of the affected panel and have not chipped through to the base metal. If stone chipping has penetrated through to the base metal, suitable touching up should be carried out immediately to prevent further paint deterioration. Surface scratching is acceptable on any panel if it has not broken the paint and can be removed by a light machine polishing, although Cocoon Vehicles reserves the right to charge. All previous repairs must be suitably re-rust proofed up to the manufacturer’s recommended standards with no colour miss-match between panels, preparation marks, paint contamination, paint overspray, paint running or poorly fitted panels.

Bumper Sections and/or Rubbing Strips

These may not be broken, cracked or deformed. Gouging, multiple chips or cracks, no matter how small, in the bumper material are outside the bounds of fair wear and tear and are not acceptable.

Window Glass and/or Windscreens

Cracks or damage within the driver’s sight line (Zone A) are not acceptable and would require a windscreen replacement. Minor chips elsewhere on the windscreen that are less than 5mm may be repaired using resin impregnation to MOT standards providing there are no signs of crack formation. All remaining glass should be free from any damage. All heating elements should be working correctly. Missing, cracked or damaged door mirrors are not acceptable. If these are heated or adjustable, these must be working correctly.

Lamp Glasses/Lens

All lamps must be operational. Any holes, cracks and chips in the glass or plastic covers of lamp units are not deemed acceptable.

Interior Trim

The interior should be clean and tidy, with no burns, tears or permanent staining on the seats. Heavy staining will result in a specialist cleaning charge. Wear and soiling through normal use is acceptable, providing that floor protection mats have been used. Gouges or scratching to interior trims are not acceptable. Any missing or broken trim is not acceptable.

Luggage Area

Light blemishes that reflect normal use are acceptable, however floor covering and surrounding trim panels should not be torn, split, stained, gouged or have scuffing that detracts the overall appearance.

Door Aperture Tread Area

A minor amount of scuffing to the door, luggage treads and sills is acceptable providing that paintwork has not broken or corroded and aperture seals are not torn.


All original controls must be intact and operate correctly. If a replacement has been necessary eg. Due to theft, then the original manufacturer’s equipment must be fitted.

Rubber Seals

Normal wear will cause certain amount of damage to the door or other trims, buy any evidence of neglect or abuse is unacceptable. Tears are also not acceptable.

Wheels and Wheel Trims

Steel rim damage is acceptable up to 15mm confined to the outer edge only, providing there is no distortion or cracking. Greater degrees of damage or multiplicity of minor damage in a single trim should be assessed on merit, using the tyre bead seating as the most important consideration. No damage to alloy wheels is acceptable. Should the damaged alloy wheel be refurbished and it does not meet the required manufacturers standards, then a full alloy refurbishment will be recharged. Should the alloy be past the point of refurbishment, then a charge for a new alloy wheel plus fitting will be charged.

Tyre Wear and Damage

All tyres including the spare must be in a legal condition and comply with the vehicles manufacturer’s recommendations of tyre type, size and speed rating and should have a minimum depth of 3.0mm across the full width of the tyre. Eg. No uneven wear. There should be no damage to the sidewalls or tread caused by kerbing or any other abuse. All tyres should be of the same type, manufacturer and speed rating. Re-moulds and budget brand replacements are not acceptable.

Underside damage

Any damage to the vehicles underside is not acceptable. Cocoon Vehicles reserves the right to re-inspect vehicles after collection at the de-fleet centre and check within 30 days for underside damage. Any underside damage found within the timescale will be chargeable.

Exhaust system

The system should be properly suspended and in efficient working order, with no leaks or evidence of blowing from the exhaust systems joints and in an undamaged condition. The exhaust should be in a condition to meet the MOT requirements in all aspects, particularly if fitted with a catalytic converter.

Oil Leaks

Any serious oil leaks must be rectified at the earliest opportunity. Some minor oil misting or dampness around seals or gaskets is acceptable, providing oil dips are not present. It is the Hirer’s duty to ensure that oil levels are kept at the required levels.


Grooved brake discs caused by metal to metal contact or premature failure due to incorrect driving techniques are not acceptable.

Engine and transmission

Premature failure due to insufficient and incorrect lubricants oils is not acceptable. Excessive engine and/or transmission (including Clutch) wear due to driver abuse or mishandling is not acceptable.


Any vehicle requiring a de-fleet invoice may be subject to an administration charge of £35.00 plus VAT (£42.00 inclusive) at Cocoon Vehicles discretion. For any vehicle with damage estimated in excess of £1,000 then Cocoon Vehicles reserves the right to insist that the Hirer purchases the vehicle within 10 days. The vehicle may also be subject to rental charges as laid out in the Master Hire Agreement.


All vehicles must be valeted in readiness for return to Cocoon Vehicles or for a collection agent to assess the vehicles. Should the vehicle not be cleaned, the collection agent may insist on the car being cleaned, alternatively the vehicle will be assessed at Cocoon Vehicles along with the comprehensive manufacturer’s report. Cocoon Vehicles reserves the right to charge £75.00 plus VAT (£90.00 inclusive) for a valet.

Servicing and Documentation

Unless specifically agreed in writing by Cocoon Vehicles and/or connected suppliers, regular maintenance should be carried out at a manufacturer’s franchised dealer according the manufacturer’s guidelines using genuine manufacturer’s parts. Proof of purchase is required and must be placed in the service book along with the service book being stamped. Any defects of damage that occurs during normal vehicle use should be rectified as soon as authority of repairs has been granted. All vehicle handbooks and fully stamped service records including the service invoice must be in the vehicle at the point of collection or charges may be applied. Missing proof of services, missed service or late services are chargeable at the cost of the manufacturer main dealer plus the cost to reinstate the vehicle’s warranty or to compensate for the loss of residual value as the result of not being serviced as details above. The minimum charge will be £500 plus VAT (£600 inclusive) If the vehicle also requires additional work carried out to reinstate the warranty this will also be chargeable.

Service Intervals

It is the Hirers responsibility to ensure service intervals as recommended by the manufacturer is known. It is the Hirers responsibility to service the vehicle should the required interval be reached. Should a service light appear before the end of the term, it is the Hirers responsibility to have the vehicle serviced in accordance with the above.

Additional Equipment

No additional equipment should be fitted to the vehicle unless written permission is received from Cocoon Vehicles. Any damage caused by the fitting of additional equipment must be refurbished to an acceptable standard, or the cost of rectification including de-installation, will be chargeable.

Ancillary Items

Aerials must be left in place or any holes professionally repaired. All standard equipment must be returned at the end of the contract period. This includes book packs, service packs, cigarette lighters, luggage trolleys, removable seating, audio equipment, satellite navigation SD Cards/Discs, luggage nets, audio cables and any other item delivered with this vehicle. Any item deemed missing, damaged or non-functional at the point of inspection or once the vehicle has been returned, will be chargeable and at the discretion of Cocoon Vehicles an administration charge applied.

Badges and Labels

Non-standard badges, labels or advertising fitted to the bodywork or glass of the vehicle must be removed. Any damage caused by the attachment or removal should be professionally repaired.

Keys and Security

Keys should be made available along with the locking wheel nuts and required unlocking nut should be made available. If the locking system is remote, the appropriate key fobs must be available and functioning. Return of the master key, which controls the vehicles engine management system, is mandatory. Keys must be made available upon collection or a new security management system will be fitted at the Hirer’s expense.


Smoking in any of our vehicles is totally prohibited. Should any vehicles be returned and have found to have been smoked in, then a valeting charge of at least £125 plus VAT (£150 inclusive) will be applied to the end invoice.


The mileage displayed at the time of collection will be considered to be verified by you as warranted. The mileage covered by each vehicle must not exceed the number of miles specified on the rental agreement/schedule. An excess mileage charge will be levied for each mile covered in excess of the contract mileage stated in your rental agreement/schedule. If you exceed the contract mileage by more than 25%, Cocoon Vehicles reserves the right to insist that the Hirer purchases the vehicle within 10 days. Mileage covered during the delivery and/or collection of the vehicle does not form part of the contracted mileage, unless otherwise specified.

Late Returns

Informal extension / late returns will be charged from the end of contract to the date of the collection, unless otherwise agreed in writing. The first 7 days will be charged at the prevailing daily rates + VAT; this will then increase to 150% of the period rental between 8 and 21 days. If the vehicle is still not collected after 21 days the charge will be increased to 200% of the period rental rate. If the vehicle is still not available to collect after 6 weeks of the term end date, Cocoon Vehicles reserves the right to insist that the Hirer purchases the vehicle within 10 days.

Outstanding warranty issues

Any warranty work on the vehicle must be completed before return of the vehicle unless with expressed permission of the manufacturers/supplier whereby a view will be taken regarding the nature and severity of the problem and the length of time required to rectify the said problem.

Early Termination and Termination/Expiry of minimum period of hire.

In the event of Early Termination of the Rental Master Hire Agreement minimum term, the Hirer will be liable for a 150% charge of the period rental agreement as laid out in the vehicle rental agreement/schedule.

Collection and Inspection

Vehicle/s should be made available for collection on or before the termination/agreed date. The Hirer must contact Cocoon Vehicles at the earliest possible convenience to arrange the “off hire” of a vehicle and to arrange a mutually acceptable return and/or collection date/time. Vehicle will be deemed as terminated upon handover to one of our collection agents or Cocoon Vehicles employees. Failure to collect or return the vehicle at the agreed date/time will result in an abortive collection charge of £175 plus VAT plus associated costs.

The collections agent will complete a very basic “walk around” inspection and complete a vehicle condition report (VCR). The VCR is a vehicle movement report and should not be confused with the comprehensive report which is conducted when the vehicle returns to our location.

The report is provided by an external independent company and may take several working days to complete. The report will be made available to you if you require a copy, please email – Once the report is complete, an invoice for the damage, excess mileage, missed servicing, etc will be raised and emailed to you. You will then have 72 hours to notify Cocoon Vehicles of any charges being contested from the date and time that Cocoon Vehicles sends the condition report and/or invoice.

More information on Return Standards

For more information about the return standards of a Short Term Lease vehicle, please call the team on 0330 330 9425 or email. – Alternatively, please complete the contact form below:

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Short Term Car Leasing Ltd t/a Cocoon Vehicles Ltd (06113683) is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (711074). We act as a credit broker not a lender. We can introduce you to a limited number of lenders who may be able to offer you finance facilities for your purchase. We will only introduce you to these lenders. We may receive a commission payment from the finance provider if you decide to enter into an agreement with them. You may be able to obtain finance for your purchase from other lenders and you are encouraged to seek alternative quotations. If you would like to know how we handle complaints, please ask for a copy of our complaints handling process. You can also find information about referring a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) at


For complaints information when a transaction is completed online, please access the Online Dispute Resolution platform at