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JGM
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 10087
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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Can you answer a question about small claims in Scotland?

Customer Question

Can you answer a question about small claims in Scotland?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Scots Law
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I bought a car from a private seller I want to take them to court but want to know my chances. I viewed the car on my own on the 9th February. I asked about the car. Asked if it had problems if it had a new timing belt as id researched the car and it was a known fault. They said one better it had a new engine fitted and a new timing belt at the time. They showed me the arm rest was broken and the seat height adjuster. I thought these things cosmetic so I was ok with that and reduced £200 of the asking price. I informed them I didn't want to buy a knackered car and it was for taking my children in and towing a caravan as it had a tow bar fitted. I agreed to the sale and left 100 deposit in cash and went home and changed my car insurance over. I went back the next day and collected it, paid a further 1300 into his wife's account. Then I realised it had bold tyres. I took it home and say it in the drive until the filling day 11th I took it to the tyre garage and put 4 new tyres on it costing 360. The next day I drove 50 miles and had the heater on and my 1 year old daughter in the back. Diesel fumes started filling the inside of the car. My daughter was coughing and I had a headache and felt unwell. I took it to the garage and left it there for diagnosing the problem. They changed an injector valve but told me it was broken and will not torque properly. That cost a further 406. The garage informed me it need the back bushes done on one back wheel, handbreak is loose. Gear problems in 4th and 5th and the main thing ill fitting and missing components in the engine. I immediately messaged the seller and asked for a refund. I said I would right off the 700 I had paid on it but I got told sorry he knows nothing about cars. I want to claim the cost of the car back. Can I claim for the repairs to make it immediately road worthy but have not completed the rest of the repairs. The garage told me I am going to be seeing a lot of them. I have the original advert that says in very good condition inside and out. An ideal family car. I also have screen shots of his Facebook page that show he does know about cars. My communication through text asking for a refund and highlighting the issues. I am awaiting quotes for the other repairs and I will text to see if he will contribute towards them. The garage is writing me a report. Who do I take to court though? The car was sold for his father in law. The son in law advertised the car was on the short test drive, I paid the deposit to the registered keepers daughter and bank transferred the money to her account. I am fed up of private seller ripping naive people off. Please tell me I have a decent chance of winning. Also should I report it to the police as the car was not fit for the road.
Expert:  JGM replied 9 months ago.

Thanks for your question. I am a solicitor in Scotland. There is no purpose in reporting this to the police as no criminal offence has been committed. If you know the name of the owner of the car then you sue that person. If not you have to sue the "agent" with whom you dealt. You have no rights under the sale of goods legislation. The only right you have under the law of Scotland is to sue for deliberate misrepresentations made by the seller or agent which induced you to buy the car but which turned out to be untrue. As you were on your own at the time, I have to be frank with you and say that you may have some difficulties in court if they dispute your version of what was said prior to you purchasing the vehicle. It would be for the court to decide whether your version of events was to be preferred and that would decide who would win the case. From your narrative and the fact you were on your own, I couldn't give you a more than 50:50 chance of success here.

Expert:  JGM replied 8 months ago.

Let me know if I can help you further with this. Can you also remember to leave a positive feedback on the system so that the site credits me for my time. Thanks for using JustAnswer.