What is the law regarding an “As Is” auto sale?

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What is the law regarding an “As Is” auto sale?

I recently purchased a side by side utility vehicle. The vehicle had some frame damage that I was aware of. I took it to a auto body place and they repaired the damage. I have since sold the vehicle and the buyer said when he was changing the oil he noticed the frame repair welds and markings and wants to return it to me. He contacted a lawer and the lawer called me and said that they will file suit if I do not return the guys money within 7 days. Both he and I signed a motor vehicle bill of sale that stated that it was sold in “As Is” condition . Will this hold up in court?

Asked on October 10, 2012 under General Practice, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You probably will be liable, and the bill of sale will probably not protect you. That's because an "as is" sale only applies to conditions that were readily apparent to the buyer when he saw and purchased the vehicle, IF there were hidden conditions (like the frame repair) that the seller was aware of but did not disclose. That is because sellers have a legal obligation to disclose material (or important) conditions of which they are aware, if such conditions are not readily or immediately visible. In this case, since you knew that the frame had been damaged but did not tell the buyer, you most likely committed consumer fraud, which can give the buyer grounds to seek monetary compensation and/or rescind the sale (return car, get money back)


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