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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 27621
Experience:  Lawyer
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I purchased a motorcycle on ebay from a dealer in New York

Customer Question

I purchased a motorcycle on ebay from a dealer in New York who advertised as "showroom condition" with no problems or issues since it only had 1960 miles. The selling price was $3755.00 Upon having it shipped to me, I took it to a local Harley Davidson dealer to have it inspected and serviced. I was informed that it had suffered front end damage previously and was repaired with parts that did not belong to that model, The mechanic stated it was not safe to operate. The selling dealer promised a refund upon my shipping it back to him along with the title. He now has the bike back and has not refunded the purchase price. I need to know what option I have available to me.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.

Advertising the vehicle as "showroom condition" when it had preexisting damage is misrepresentation. He doesn't have to disclose prior damage unless you ask, but he can't make false, misleading comments, and a vehicle isn't showroom condition after it's been in an accident. That means you have a right to be put in the position you'd have been in if the transaction never happened at all.You have the ability to sue the dealer for the cost of the vehicle, plus your shipping costs in returning it, the mechanic's charges your filing fees, and any other incidental expenses (not including the costs of traveling to court). You're also unfortunately not entitled to lawyer's fees unless you had a contract that says so - any lawyer would be paid for out of your own pocket.

The Small Claims Court limit in New York is $5,000. You can sue in Small Claims if you're willing to accept $5,000 as compensation for your losses, even if it's a bit more than that. Those courts tend to be pretty user-friendly, with forms you can download to start a case, and no lawyers are required. If your damages are significantly more than $5,000, then you can file in the regular civil courts. Because the dealer is in NY, I'm sorry to say, you must file the lawsuit there.

Another option is to send a letter, via certified mail, giving them a firm date for returning your money to avoid the lawsuit. And you're also able to report them to the Attorney General's Office for their unfair and deceptive practices in selling the vehicle by lying about the condition.

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