How to go about suing a car dealership?

I recently purchased a brand new vehicle. On the night I purchased the car it was dark not very

good lighting and the car was dirty. Myself and the 2 of the salesman did a quick walk through of the car to look for scratches and so on. I saw some nicks here and they said when we took the car back to get it washed they would buff them out. Took the car back to get washed, which took 2 plus hours. When we got the car back, they were closing already sun was going down we took the car home. Next morning we noticed some blemishes on the hood and some chips on the windshield. We took the car straight back to the dealer. They then looked at the car scheduled us for another appt to take the car back. We took the car left it they gave us a loner and we were on our way. Days later they said they can replace the windshield but it’s going to be an after market windshield. Other then that they can’t do anything. I purchased a new vehicle that’s what I paid for not after market parts. Is there

anything that I can do in this situation?

Asked on January 19, 2018 under Business Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You may not have grounds to sue: you voluntarily bought the car without getting a good look at it (you did not have to: you could have said you'd come back the next day to look at it before buying, and/or told them to get it cleaned up so you could view it properly before you commited to buy the car) and it does not appear that any of the chips, blemishes, etc. were hidden by the car deal--they were on the surface of the vehicle, and the car dealer did not take steps to conceal them from you. When the dealer does not hide defects from you and you choose to buy a car without a chance to view it properly, they did nothing wrong (e.g. they did not commit fraud) and you are bound to your voluntary decision to buy the car. It may be that getting a free after-market windscreen from them is the best you can do, because based on what you write, you might not be able to prevail in a lawsuit.
That said, if you are determined to sue, you sue by drafting (writing) a summons and complant, filing it in court, then having it served (delivered in the proper legal way) to the car dealership. If you are seeking an amount of monetary compensation equal to or less than the limit for small claims court, you may wish to sue in small claims, as your own attorney or "pro se," to reduce costs. If seeking more than the small claims limit or seeking a court order "rescinding" (undoing) the sale and forcing the dealer to take the car back and return your money, you have to sue in "regular" county court and probably should retain an attorney to help you. You should be able to get instructions and sample forms from the court, either from their website or in person at the court clerk's office.


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