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Hello, this is Jim and welcome to JustAnswer.
I am one of the legal experts on the site and I am a dual-qualified solicitor (UK & Republic of Ireland)
Thank you for the question, I am reviewing the details now and I will aim to resolve it as quickly as possible for you.
Sorry to hear of the issue.
Your friend needs a V5 to tax the vehicle, or the new keeper green slip.
As they have the code required to tax the vehicle. The car should not be driven on the road until it's taxed. Your friend should ask the garage for the green slip if there is one.
It is legal to sell a car without a V5 - it's always advisable to buy a car with either the full V5 or the green new keeper slip. If you don't then you run in to this problem and sadly have to wait for the new logbook to turn up. As such it is not a scam in my view - a legal owner can be separate to the registered keeper (a V5 is not evidence of ownership).
It may be possible to call DVLA and ask them for the code from the new logbook to be able to then tax the car online so that's my recommendation - to call them on their number which is 0300(###) ###-####/p>
I hope this helps
It was a pleasure to assist you today and I hope this answers the question.
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I'd say it's reasonable to ask to return it yes, on the basis the garage did not do what they say they would. There should be previous keepers unless the car is recently imported to the UK.