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I bought a used car (2005 Ford Escort) last week. Everything…

I bought a used...

I bought a used car (2005 Ford Escort) last week. Everything looked great and ran great, particularly for a 2005. A couple of days in I heard a rattle and asked my local dealer to check it out. When they put it on the lift the frame began to disintegrate due to rust, and they determined that it should not be driven. This was an "As-Is" purchase. Am I screwed? I am in Ohio - is there a used car lemon law?

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken so far?

I have left a message with the dealer I purchased from and have not yet heard back.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I think that's it, thanks.

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Answered in 1 hour by:
3/15/2018
Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 126,685
Experience: Attorney experienced in commercial litigation.
Verified

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

Unfortunately, under OH law, any used vehicle purchase without written warranty to the contrary is an as is sale. In an as is sale, the risk of hidden defect is on the BUYER, not the seller. There is no used car lemon law in OH.

Even in an as is sale, there are some common law warranties. One is the common law implied warranty of merchantability, which says if the seller knew the car was not fit for its intended purpose at the time of sale, then they are liable to refund the purchase. You would have to prove they knew or should have known of the rusted frame, which renders the car unfit for its intended purpose.

So you can tell the dealer first that if they do not cancel the sale for selling you a car not fit for its intended purpose, you will file an unfair and deceptive business practice claim with the Attorney General and you will file a complaint with the BMV Dealer license unit and you will pursue legal action against them. If they refuse, make the complaints, if the AG and BMV cannot resolve the matter you would have to sue for breach of the implied warranty of merchantability.

Please do not forget to leave positive feedback by clicking on the 5 stars at the top of your page, as the experts are not employees of the site and get no credit for spending time with customers unless they leave positive feedback. Thank you.

Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 126,685
Experience: Attorney experienced in commercial litigation.
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