Is my father liable for a bad job a mechanic did at his shop, if he sold the business before the it was reported under warranty?

My father owned a mechanic shop, he did not repair Semi trucks but rather had mechanics work for him. he did a Job for a man where he repaired the engine and gave him a 6 months guarantee. The truck owner parked the truck and didn’t use it until 5 months later and apparently a bad job was done and the engine as ruined. The thing is, my father sold the business during the 4th month. My father wishes to help the owner but either way he is threatening to take us to court.

Asked on June 13, 2012 under Business Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If the business were a limited liability company (LLC) or corporation (inc.), he should not be liable for the poor repair. The owner of an LLC or corporation is not generally personally liable for causes of action against a business, including in cases where the business is accused of doing a bad job, being negligent, or not fulfilling its contractual obligations. However, if the business were not an LLC or corporation, then you father could be personally held liable--in that instance, there was no separate legal entity for the business, so it was your father personally who was responsible for the work. The fact that he sold the business does not absolve him of liability for things he did prior to the sale.

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