What to do about possible car fraud?

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What to do about possible car fraud?

I purchased a car that was previously inspected by a mechanic (who is affiliated with the dealer) who passed the car through inspection. Now this same mechanic is saying that the transmission needs to be replaced. We have complained and tried to return the car for a month since we were lied to; our complaints were disregarded the whole time. I have filed a complaint with the attorney general and forwarded the dealership a copy, but they are not budging. The fact that it had just passed inspection a month earlier made me think I didn’t need a mechanic to look at it prior to purchase. Is this in any way illegal?

Asked on May 6, 2011 under General Practice, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The issues are three-fold:

1) First and foremost, what was the inspection for? If it included the transmission, you may have a case; on the other hand, if it was, for example, an inspectioin of exhaust output, to measure environmental compliance (like, for example, NJ did for many years), the inspector/mechanic does not look at the transmission. So you need to consider what the inspection was for, to see if there was negligence or fraud in the results you received.

2) Second, some problems are simply not readily detectable. Even if the inspection was for the transmission, if it would be reasonably possible for a good inspection to be done and this problem to not be detected, it might be the case there is no liability. On the other hand, it should have been spotted, and the inspection took in the transmission, then there might well be liability.

3) Third, it's not impossible the problem arose after purchase, though from what you write, unlikely; still, this is a possible  issue, and one that will depend on the specific facts here.


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