Am I responsible for items left in a vehicle by a previous owner?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Am I responsible for items left in a vehicle by a previous owner?

I purchased a vehicle from a private owner. Then 2 days later the detail shop found personal items in the car – clothes, pictures, CD’s, papers, watch and a I-pod. I left all of those items at the shop to get thrown away, except the I-pod which I gave to my son. A few days after that previous owners called a mutual friend asking for all the items back. I no longer have any of them. My son ended up trading I-pods with a friend. Am I liable for for the cost of those items? I met the previous owner in a parking lot where we exchanged cash for the car. He signed over title. He then looked through the car to make sure he had everything and we left. After I got tags for the car, I took it to be cleaned, and they are the ones who pulled all the items from the car.

Asked on February 25, 2011 under General Practice, Georgia

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

No, probably not.  You purchased the vehicle "as is" I am sure.  That would have covered the car and the contents.  I liken it to any contract for purchase of anything that could hold personal items, like a house.  If you purchased the house and there were things left by the owner you would get those things unless they were specifically excluded in the contract. It is a shame, however, that you did not contact the previous owner prior to disposing of the items just as a courtesy. especially if some of the items were important to the prior owner or their family members.  It wasobviously a mistake.  Maybe next time.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption