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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 47424
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I bought a car six months ago from a car dealer who claimed

Customer Question

Hi.
I bought a car six months ago from a car dealer who claimed they had done the HPI checks which didn't show any history of damage.
we are now trying to sell the car but it has come to light that the car is a CAT D Insurance loss which really affects the resale value.
The dealer is still claiming that checks were done and they didn't show anything even though the damage was recorded 3 months prior to us buying it. They also state that because it has been over 3 months since the sale they will not do anything about it.
Do we have any kind of claim against the dealer for not disclosing that the car was in fact a CAT D Insurance loss?
Thanks for your time and help.
Paul.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Did the dealer provide written confirmation that the checks had been carried out?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I'm afraid not. I only have receipt showing make model and ammount
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

OK, thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not responded to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Thanks for your patience. When a person buys a second-hand vehicle from a dealer they will have certain rights under consumer laws.

First of all, 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 these 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.

Your other rights state 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. If they had not mentioned anything about it being a Cat D and the official checks one would make also do not make any reference to this, then it may be unlikely that they could be held liable because they had not misadvertised the car. However, if they should have known this was the case or said they had conducted such checks when in fact they would have shown it was a Cat D then that could be misrepresentation.

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 the first month after purchase.

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.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you need to take if you have to pursue this further, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Ben Jones and 3 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thanks for your reply.You have pretty much confirmed what I had thought and I already have a draft letter to finish so I will be going down the route of a formal letter and hope we come to an amicable outcome.Thank you for your time and helpPaul.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Thank you. I can give you some more details to back up what you may have already been thinking of doing. Whenever a dispute arises over compensation owed by one party to another, the party at fault can be pursued through the civil courts. As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps:

1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the party at fault to voluntarily settle this matter.

2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the party at fault must be sent a formal letter asking them to resolve this amicably within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to pursue the compensation due. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action.

3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the other side and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this.

Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thanks again Ben it's useful information.Hopefully it won't get as far as the courts as this was just a cheap car to put L plates on for my daughter. I usually buy higher end cars where things like this just don't happen. I've learned a lesson for the future to carry out my own check before hand.Once again thanksPaul.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

you are most welcome, and remember that you do not have to go to court but can always take the steps leading up to it to try and twist their arm a bit more. All the best