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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 114716
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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I purchased a car a month ago, later found out I got taken.

Customer Question

I purchased a car a month ago, later found out I got taken. What can I do about it?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for using JustAnswer. I'm sorry to hear about your situation. Can you tell me a bit more? In what way did you get "taken"? Was this a new or used car? Was it the car itself, the financing, etc...? Were there fraudulent statements made?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
(Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Please call(###) ###-####
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.
I wish I could contact you with a phone call, but that's considered legal advice and counsel at that point, rather than answering a legal question, and as such is prohibited by the terms of service of this site. That option is there because there are many different categories on this site, but only one (legal) has such a restriction on forming an attorney-client relationship. But we can continue the question here.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Being I'm not satisfied, I don't expect to be charged this fee
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.
I haven't answered your question because I don't know enough about your situation. As such, I don't expect you to be satisfied yet. Are you saying that you don't want to provide me the information to adequately answer your question?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
You really didn't tell me anything, how do you expect to be paid other than the $5.00. I don't expect to have anything else
taken from my account. You told me nothing
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.
I know I haven't told you anything. I asked for more information. All you said that you were "taken" in a car purchase. That's why I asked for more information.
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.
What you have told me is not enough for me to answer your question adequately.
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.
I'll go ahead and opt out of this question as you're not "satisfied" with my service. Again, I was nowhere near answering your question as I was trying to get some information from you to adequately answer your question. With what you had given me previously, my best answer would be "maybe", and I'm not satisfied with that answer. It's because I want to give you value for the money that you spend on the answer that I was seeking more information so I could give you a more specific answer. I do wish you the best of luck in your situation.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I am a different contributor.
I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Please understand, the way this system works is that the customer has to provide us sufficient information about their situation in order for us to provide you the proper information. If you do not provide us sufficient facts we cannot provide you a proper answer.
Just saying that you "were taken" does not tell us why and you do not tell us if this was a new or used car purchase or if it was from a dealer or private seller. Without sufficient information from you, we cannot provide you the information you are seeking.
If you would kindly reply and provide us all of the facts of the situation we can tell you what the legal principles are that apply to your situation and your potential recourse, if any, exists under the laws.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Purchased a 2013 kia optima for 2400,00. also traded in my 2008 kia amanti, was given 4000.00 for it. Found out later
a 2013 was going for 17 to 21 thousand. The problem is, we went there expecting to lease a car, and he told us we would
have to put down thousands up front.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I also put down a thousand up front
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Waiting on your response
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
Under the law, used car purchases are considered as is. This means that people who purchase used items are tasked with exercising their due diligence BEFORE making the purchase. This is held by the courts to mean that the responsibility is on the buyer to inspect the vehicle for defects and do their due diligence regarding pricing and are held to get "the benefit of the bargain" that they agreed upon as the courts state. The courts use the term "caveat emptor" or "buyer beware" when discussing used car purchases.
In situations where a buyer agrees upon a price with a seller they are stuck with the benefit of the bargain they agreed upon (sometimes that bargain is in favor of the buyer and sometimes it is in favor of the seller) and that is a general principle of contracts. People are bound to contracts they agree upon and are expected to do their research (due diligence) prior to making their purchase, new or used.
In the case of a used purchase that has hidden defects without warranty, the buyer bears the liability of any such defects with limited exceptions. In a used vehicle purchase without written warranty, there are two implied warranties that can apply. Both of the implied warranties involve defects to a vehicle and require proof of the seller having knowledge of the defect prior to the sale. There is the warranty of merchantability, which requires proof the seller knew or should have known that the vehicle was not fit for its intended purpose at the time of the sale. There is also the warranty of good faith, which requires the seller to be shown to have known of defects in the vehicle prior to the sale and they failed to disclose them or concealed them from the buyer.
As you can see, under the law, there are limited legal recourses available to a buyer of a used item.
Even in a new sale though, negotiation of a contract regarding price and terms is something between buyer and seller and each gets the benefit of the bargain they negotiate absent any intentional fraud or misrepresentation and the burden of proof of such fraud or misrepresentation is on the party claiming it occurred.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I purchased it as a certified used car
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
Does it have defects they are not covering, because all you mentioned above is you think you paid too much for it and that is not something covered under it being a certified used car.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He lied to me about the cost of leasing the car
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
That goes back to "benefit of the bargain" that I explained above. When negotiating terms and price it is the buyer's responsibility to be educated prior to negotiation. If they presented costs to you regarding leasing v. buying and you agreed and signed the contract, I am afraid that legally this generally is not a basis to rescind the contract as your signature on the contract is your agreement to the terms and conditions of the agreement.
Now, I said generally, there is an outside chance that if you can prove that you would not have entered into the deal and the seller knew that up front, without the intentional and material misrepresentations of the seller regarding the deal, that could be reason to sue for misrepresentation. However, that is not as easy as it sounds to prove in court, because it requires you to prove that you told them that you wanted the lease and they intentionally misrepresented these terms to you in such a way that it fraudulently induced you into agreeing to this contract that you would not have agreed upon to begin with if it were not solely for their misrepresentation. These cases are very hard to win and it is an outside chance that depends wholly on the evidence you can produce and the mere fact you paid more than you should have for the car is not sufficient, you have to prove that you told them you wanted the lease and you knew the prices that you should have paid and that they fraudulently misrepresented this purchase as something that would satisfy your requirements you presented to them.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I didn't go there to purchase a car. he told me the interest rate was low, and I would have to put down
at least $3000.00. I called and found out later that there's no down payment for leasing a car. we have
very good credit. because of that, we decided to purchase the car.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I would not have purchased the car if he had not lied
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
I understand all of that, but again, the courts hold that the buyer has responsibility for knowing these things when negotiating such deals and it is for that reason the cases you are talking about are so hard to win.
It is also not completely true that there are no down payments for leasing a car. They may not call them down payments, but there are up front leasing costs that a lessor may have to come up with prior to leasing and they call them leasing fees and not down payments. These fees differ between dealers.
If you can prove they made fraudulent misrepresentations, as I said above, you could seek to sue for fraud and misrepresentation, but again, it is a difficult case.