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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 117359
Experience:  Attorney experienced in commercial litigation.
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We purchased a used car on the day before thanksgiving, paid

Customer Question

we purchased a used car on the day before thanksgiving, paid cash at a Dealer. when we got home we noticed some apaerwork in the glove box. Upon reading the paperwork we learned about some searous issuess with the car. By chance there was the address and phone number of the previous owner. We kearned that there was a searious issue with the rings and seals pertaing to the pistons. And that it used a lot of oil. this person purchased the wehicle less than a year ago , and got rid of it because to fix it would cost a lot of money. I immediatley contacted th dealer and told them I wanted my money back and was afraid the car would cost me a small fortune to fix. They are giving me the run around wanting to find me a different vehicle. At this point I just want my money back. Today is day 5 and I have talked to them every day since Wednesday, except thanksgiving. What rights do I have,
JA: What state are you in? And is a local attorney or other consumer protection advocate helping with this?
JA: Have you contacted the manufacturer?
Customer: Not yet should I it is used a 2008 Toyota Rav4. so there is no warranty left on it.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Would like to know my rights should they take the car back. thats pretty much it
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 8 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Under the MN law, the purchase of a used vehicle is deemed an as is purchase unless a warranty is given in writing to the contrary. In any as is sale, the courts hold that the buyer must beware and has a duty to make a reasonable inspection of the product prior to purchase as the risk of any defect is on the buyer, not the seller.
Even in an as is sale though, without any warranty, the MN laws recognize the common law implied warranty of merchantability and the common law implied warranty of good faith. These two implied warranties would require that the seller know of a hidden defect and that this hidden defect renders the care unsafe or at least in need of repair and that the seller concealed that information or did not disclose it when asked by the buyer.
You need to send the dealer a letter informing them that pursuant to the implied warranty of merchantability and implied warranty of good faith that you expect them to repair the problem or refund your purchase since you can prove they knew about this defect from the documents in the car and they failed to disclose. You need to inform them if they do not resolve this issue, your next step will be to file a complaint to the Attorney General consumer protection unit and also to the DMV dealer licensing unit for investigation of them selling vehicles with known hazardous defects and not disclosing that information.
If they refuse to negotiate, then file your complaints to the AG and DMV for investigation. In most cases, they will be able to resolve these complaints without you incurring the expense of an attorney, which would be on you.

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