Thank you, K.
This complicates it a little bit. There may still be a case, but it is subjective. Allow me to explain.IMPLIED WARRANTIES
Even if there is no express warranty, you might still have an IMPLIED warranty. This is where it gets murkier.
When one purchases an item, even if one does not have a specific warranty, it comes with a set of implied warranties. A seller makes a warranty of merchantability and warranty of fitness for a particular purpose, unless expressly excluded
. These implied warranties are very ambiguous in law by nature.
An implied warranty of fitness for a particular purpose is a warranty implied by law that if a seller knows or has reason to know of a particular purpose for which some item is being purchased by the buyer, the seller is guaranteeing that the item is fit for that particular purpose. B.C.S. Financial Corp. v. Sorbo, 213 Ga. App. 259, 444 S.E.2d 85 (1994)
An implied warranty of merchantability is a warranty implied by law that goods are reasonably fit for the general purpose for which they are sold. Id
Now, both are very subjective and are based on (1) the item's condition at time of purchase, (2) the amount the item was purchased for, (3) how long an item of such nature normally would be expected to last for, and (4) whether or not you waived these warranties by writing.
Also, Georgia allows parties to void or enlarge these warranties, but the express waiver "must be clear, certain on that point, and conspicuous." Id
. As such, it specifically depends on what the verbiage is. "As is" may simply not cut it. See here
for a good overview of what I am talking about.
Courts do not always attach these warranties to vehicles, but some do. It is simply on a case by case basis.
In addition, to the cause of action of breach of said implied warranties, one can possibly add a cause of action for fraud
. The tort of fraud has five elements: a false representation by a defendant, scienter, intention to induce the plaintiff to act or refrain from acting, justifiable reliance by plaintiff, and damage to plaintiff. Hardy v. Gordon, 146 Ga. App. 656 (247 SE2d 166) (1978)
This matter is for small claims court of GA - see here
. This is actually a good thing because small claims courts (often called Magistrate Courts) tend to be less formal and the Judge may exercise some subjectivity. In short, the Judge has more discretion.
An attorney is recommended. This is because they do not see you as much of a threat without an attorney since you filing or winning a suit without counsel less likely. But with an attorney, it is likely. Very often, a demand letter from an attorney takes care of the matter even before suit is filed, as they acquiesce and agree to come to a deal to avoid litigation.
May I recommend a GA Bar referral program - here
. The attorneys are vetted and qualified. You should be able to find an attorney you are confident with and whom you can trust, and who is available ASAP.
Finally, at this point it does not matter
if you registered the vehicle or not - there is no question that the sale has gone though. So one might as well - this will not impact the case in any way.
I hope this helps and clarifies. Good luck.
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