Can I be sued in civil court over problems with a jet ski sold with no warranty agreement?

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Can I be sued in civil court over problems with a jet ski sold with no warranty agreement?

I was served today with a summons to appear in court. I sold the ski 4 months ago.The person that I sold the jet ski to is claiming that he has taken it to a shop and it has a bad motor. When the ski left from my possession there was nothing wrong with it except for a bad battery.We agreed that he would buy a battery if I would reduce the asking price so he could see it run before leaving.He returned later with no battery but wished to buy anyways. There was no agreement signed and the only paperwork was a bill of sell.Will his claims hold up in court?

Asked on April 28, 2012 under Business Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Legally, if you did not provide a warranty or guaranty of some kind, then you would be liable only if 1) there was some problem with the motor which existed prior to the sale; 2) you knew or reasonably should have known about the problem; 3) knowing of the problem, you omitted to tell the buyer of it or actively misrepresented the condition of the motor. You would not be liable for problems arising after the sale, or problems which exited pre-sale if you did not know of them and the sale was effectively "as is" (again no guaranty or warranty). To successfully sue you, the buyer would have to show that the problem was pre-existing and that you either knew of it or reasonably  had to have known (that is, there is no way you could have owned the jet ski and not known).


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