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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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I have purchased a used car from a used car dealer, it was

Resolved Question:

I have purchased a used car from a used car dealer, it was very cheap, payment was by credit card for £509.85. However after the purchase and receipt of the documentation I found the MOT certificate states that it only just passed with serious corrosion on many parts underneath the car, that if I had to guess would be at least £1000 repair work. I contacted the seller explaining I was not happy about this and would like to return the paperwork and get a refund, and find a suitable alternative car, he said no, I cannot return the car, he felt paying £500 for a car with approx 6 months of MOT left was acceptable. Now I am confident my return to his location would result in a scuffle or sorts, which I would like to avoid if at all possible.
I can cancel my payment as it was on credit card but I would much rather explain a legal stand with him to try and get him to help pay for some of the required repairs.
All I know is he did not tell me about it, I did not see the paperwork until after the purchase was made, the advert said 90k miles, but it was 96400 miles, and it also said MOT to Sept but in actual fact it runs out 5th Aug so I though perhaps misrepresentation?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Customer:

Interesting, I was under the impression that someone by the name of Jo, a barrister would be dealing withthis?

Ben Jones :

No, you may have seen a list of our professionals when you posted your question but she is not online now

Customer:

ok

Ben Jones :

let me just get my response ready please

Ben Jones :

When a person buys a second-hand vehicle from a dealer they will have certain rights under consumer law, specifically the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (CPR) and the Sale of Goods Act 1979 (SGA).


 


Under the CPR, the following business practices are deemed unfair if they prompted you to make a decision to buy the car in question:



  • Giving false information about the vehicle or deceiving the buyer through false advertising

  • Giving insufficient information to the buyer, for example leaving out important information about the condition of the car


 


Failure to adhere to the CPR rules will be unlawful and may even amount to a criminal offence so if you believe that the dealer acted in contravention of these rules you can bring this up with them when you contact them about this.


 


In addition, you will have certain rights under the SGA, which states that when you buy an item from a business seller it must be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose and match its description. If the car does not satisfy any of these, the dealer will be responsible.


 


They will only be liable for faults that were present at the time the vehicle was sold, even if they become apparent later on. However, they will not be liable for fair wear and tear, misuse or accidental damage or any issues that were brought to the buyer’s attention before the sale. The age and value of the vehicle will also be relevant and the expectations of older vehicles will certainly be lower.


 


If the vehicle does not meet the above requirements, the buyer can reject the vehicle and return it to the dealer requesting a refund. However, this will need to be done within a ‘reasonable period, which is usually 3-4 weeks after purchase.


 


If the buyer is too late to reject the vehicle, they could instead request that it is repaired or replaced without causing them significant inconvenience. The dealer may only reject a repair or replacement if it is impossible or disproportionate in the circumstances. If that happens, you are entitled to get it repaired elsewhere and claim back the repair costs, although there is an obvious risk in doing so as there is no guarantee in getting any of the money back.


 


If the dealer refuses to resolve this issue or accept any liability, you could take legal action against them. However, before going down that route you should try and resolve the issue directly with them by sending them a formal letter specifying how you want this matter resolved and giving them 7 days to respond. Advise them that if they fail to get back to you or deal with this in a satisfactory manner, you will have no other option but to report them to Trading Standards and issue legal proceedings to seek compensation.


 

Customer:

the only question here is that fit for use or similar. Essentially the car has a legal MOT document, however it is evident from this document that in Aug 5th this year it will undoubtedly fail its MOT

Customer:

so from the legal point I guess misrepresentation is all I am left with and thats a flakey argument at best

Customer:

that said, its the 16th today. If the MOT fails on the 5th of Aug that falls within the 6 month period, so I could in theory request that they repair it under the law?

Ben Jones :

that would only cover the mall discrepancies with the mileage and MOT but does the difference of a few thousand miles and a month of MOT mean the whole contract is void, well that remains to be seen. The best weapon would have been if they had directly lied or misled you about the condition, either when you asked them about it or in their description

As to the repairs, in theory yes you can ask them but there is no guarantee they will, that is the risk - it then means you have to pursue the through the courts to get compensation - so the law is there but it relies in the other party to follow it and that does not always happen

Customer:

I think I am stuffed, I have no choice now but to keep the car and get the repairs done off my own back. I will surely try and have them add something into the mix for repairs but I doubt they will entertain that

Ben Jones :

of course you have nothing to lose by approaching them and trying to negotiate on something - you have the relevant legislation above, as mentioned you can also threaten to take this further but one thing is for certain - you cannot force them to act and the only way to pursue your right in the event of a brick wall is the small claims court

Customer:

ok, thanks, XXXXX XXXXX a small sum of cash I doubt I will go down that route#

Ben Jones :

yes I thought it may be the case but the option is there if you need it

Ben Jones :

Can I clarify anything else for you?

Customer:

No I think you have helped me confirm pretty much what I expected to be the case, The law, although there, is not a great deal of help unless I am willing to risk more expense, cant afford to take that risk, so instead I have decided to take the car as is, collect and voice y disgust at the person in question, and leave it at that, the amount is too small to do anything in a court way

Customer:

Thank you Ben, the information you provided was something I already found, but I am glad to pay for your service to ensure my own thinking is correct

Customer:

I assume if I click excellent service you then get paid?

Ben Jones :

yes that is correct, thank you and all the best

Customer:

and you

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