Consumer Protection Law
Consumer Protection Law Questions? Ask a Lawyer Now.
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You do have recourse in this situation. You have the right to terminate the transaction and return the car with a full refund of your money. A seller is obligated to disclose anything the seller knows or should have known that a reasonable buyer would consider material in making the decision whether or not to buy the car. Previously being in accidents and having title issues are clearly things the seller knew or should have known about and clearly qualify as material items that a reasonable buyer would consider in making their decision. You want to raise the stakes on your seller by sending the seller a certified, return receipt requested letter detailing the history and misrepresentation and lack of disclosure and demand they take the car back and refund your money in full within a short specified period of time. Inform your seller that if your demand is not timely complied with, you will have no choice but to file a suit against him for your damages. BUT, be sure to specifically mention that if forced to file suit, you will be filing this claim not only as a breach of contract case, but also as fraud and deceptive trade practice causes of action, which will entitle you not only to your damages, but also an additional amount equal to multiple times your actual damages as punitive damages. That should provide plenty of incentive to comply with your demands; but, if it does not, file your suit. Even if you have to file the suit, that's likely all you will need do. In my experience, the seller will settle this without a hearing rather than risk punitive damages and the fraud and/or deceptive trade practice judgments being on the record.
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