Car was in accident...now what

Asked almost 5 years ago - Saginaw, MI

I live in michigan. two years ago i bought a used van from a dealership. Last month I had to get the shocks replaced and was told my rear axle is bent. They then asked me when it was in an accident. I have never had an accident with it. Can I make the dealership take it back. Can I make them give me my money back. A friend told me I could. If so how do I go about proving this>

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Thomas William James

    Contributor Level 11

    Answered . Probably not. What did carfax report show?

    Good luck to you,
    Tom James

    tjames@michiganautolaw.com
    tjames@gurstenlaw.com

  2. Ronald Lee Burdge

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . You probably can't make them take it back and cancel the deal but you may be able to recover your damages. How bad the accident was can make a difference. Whether you bought it as is or not can matter. If you got any kind of warranty matters too. Wrecked and repaired cars can be dangerous because you don't know the quality of the repair job or the repairman. Many car dealers will run a CarFax before they sell cars off their lot, although they are not required. CarFax has done a good job of advertising itself, but it isn't always accurate. They get their information from insurance companies and car dealers and title departments and lots of other places so it seems to be about 80% accurate, more or less. However, the existence of an accident on the CarFax report seems to almost always be accurate in our experience. If the dealer ran a CarFax (and the CarFax company keeps track of who runs their reports), then it was on notice of the accident record and all else on the report. If your report shows an accident before the dealer bought the car, then the dealer's report probably did too. Car dealers generally have a higher disclosure obligation than an ordinary consumer would have selling the car. If the dealer knows something and realizes that the buyer would want to know about it, but doesn't disclose it, the dealer may be committing fraud by concealment. Every state has its own definition of fraud, but generally it's a lie or something kept hidden that costs you money. There is a big difference in value between a car that has never been wrecked and one that has, even when the repairs are done right. It's called "diminished value" and it means your car is worth much less than one that was not wrecked and repaired. You probably have the right to either cancel the deal or recover the amount you were overcharged for the car. If you want to know what your car is really worth, take it to a car dealer and see how much they will give you for it after you tell them that the CarFax for it says it was wrecked and it may have frame damage. Many car dealers won't want to buy it at all. You should talk to a local Consumer Law lawyer about your state laws and what your rights are, right away. Call your local attorney's Bar Association and ask for a referral to a Consumer Law attorney near you or you can go to this web site page for a Free Online 50 State National List of Consumer Law Lawyers (http://www.ohiolemonlaw.com/ocll-site/ocll-loca...) and find one near you (lawyers don’t pay to get listed here and most of them are members of the only national association for Consumer Law lawyers, NACA.net). But act quickly because for every legal right you have, there is only a limited amount of time to actually file a lawsuit in court or your rights expire (it's called the statute of limitations), so don't waste your time getting to a Consumer Law attorney and finding out what your rights are. If this answer was helpful, please check the box below.

  3. Patrick St George Cousins

    Pro

    Contributor Level 12

    Answered . I do not practice law in your state but it would appear that you have a tough case to prove. First you have to establish that your vehicle was in fact in an accident prior to you purchasing it. Who is the "they" that asked you if the vehicle had been in an accident? Can "they" help prove that the vehicle was in an accident? Did you purchase the vehicle from the dealership "AS IS?" Please seek the advice of a local attorney and be ready to answer the questions I posed when you see that attorney. I wish you the best.

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.

 

Ask now

25,325 answers this week

2,685 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

25,325 answers this week

2,685 attorneys answering