If you buy a car and find out they lied to you about it , can you sue for your money back?

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If you buy a car and find out they lied to you about it , can you sue for your money back?

I bought a van from an individual in “great condition” but when I drove it home it broke down. They lied to us and they notarized the title before I signed. I did not sign it.

Asked on April 29, 2009 under Criminal Law, North Carolina

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

There are really two issues going on here:

 

A.  If they forged or fraudulently prepared this document, then that is a criminal act and you can do three things: contact the North Carolina Banking Department or Attorney General's Office (whomever licenses or regulates this car dealer), sue them in court and/or call the police.

 

B.  In terms of the car breaking down when you drove it home, you have actually touched upon a classic issue in law.  It is called puffing.  The dealer can puff up anything ("great condition").  It is part of the advertisement ruse.  The issue becomes whether or not you purchased the car with any warranties? I am guessing you bought it "as is"?  If you did, you may be out of luck unless you can prove what they forged/fabricated materially affected the deal. 

 

 


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