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CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 10215
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney representing individuals and businesses.
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My parents purchased a used car valued at $5K. The car was

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My parents purchased a used car valued at $5K. The car was delivered to their house by the son of the owner on a trailer. They noticed a missing piece on the front grill and that the glass for the hard-top was cracked. Son apologized took hardtop and said he would get both of them replaced. My parents did not get anything in writing. It is now going on 4-weeks. I have located one of the pieces from a used car parts supplier at a cost of $700 and provided information to dealer since they were unable to locate replacement part. I feel my parents are in a bind because they took possession of the car when they probably should have sent it back or at least scribbled a written agreement about “to-owe” items upon delivery. My father is going to meet with the owner this week. Going forward what should we consider in the event this has to become a legal case? I’m assuming missing/damaged parts don’t fall under any lemon laws in FL where they could return the car. Would court law allow them to recoup cost of parts (used or dealer new price) since it was sold “as-is”. Any insight greatly appreciated.

CalAttorney2 :

Dear Customer, thank you for choosing Just Answer. I would like to assist you with your legal question today. I am sorry to learn of this transaction involving your parent's purchase, but I do need a little more information to assist in understanding what potential causes of action would apply should this matter go to court.

CalAttorney2 :

You are almost certainly correct regarding the fact that the lemon law does not apply here (you can review the Florida Lemon Law statute information here and see if it does apply, but it is very narrow when it comes to used vehicles:

CalAttorney2 :

The two causes of action that would likely apply in this situation would be (1) fraud, and (2) breach of contract. Depending on whether or not your parents inspected the vehicle prior to purchase (or what questions they asked or information they were given prior to purchase) a fraud claim may apply. Also, depending on what the contract stated - in this case, it sounds as if they may have a good claim that the son provided an addendum to the contract agreeing to fix the damaged parts.

CalAttorney2 :

To prove fraud, your parents must show (1) that a false statement was made or was concealed; (2) that they relied on that fact; (3) that they suffered damages. If they can show these basic elements, that will create a strong case for fraud.

CalAttorney2 :

To prove a breach of contract, they will have to show that they bargained for something they did not receive (meaning they either contracted for a non-damaged vehicle in the first place, or they refused receipt based on the representation that the damaged parts would be fixed - the second clause requires that they show they had a right to refuse delivery).

CalAttorney2 :

This matter would likely fall under the jurisdiction of small claims court in Florida, and they can proceed without an attorney (if litigation is necessary) and with limited procedural rules and requirements:


Thank you. Great questions. I will find out the details and most likely be back for another session in the next couple of days.

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