Can I sue the person that custom made my food trailer?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I sue the person that custom made my food trailer?

I purchased a custom built trailer that will not pass a VIN Inspection by State
Patrol because he said it was ‘unsafe’ and ‘poorly built’. The officer even said
that we should try and get our money back. I have invested all of my time and
money to start this food truck and now I cannot move forward with my business
because the trailer does not have license plates on it. I cannot attend the
events I paid to be at because of this. I am losing a lot of money and the guy
that built it will not respond to me. Can I sue him?

Asked on June 19, 2018 under Business Law, Colorado


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you most likely can sue him to recover the amount you paid for the trailer. When you hire someone to build something, or purchase an already-built item from them, there is an implied warranty (a warranty created by law, even if it is not in so many words in the contract/bill of sale/etc.) that the item will be "fit for its intended purpose." In the case of a trailer, that includes that it is road-legal and passes its VIN inspection, and a failure to pass the VIN would be a violation of the "implied warranty of fitness for a particular purpose." You can sue based on that violation.

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 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.

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