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What recourse do I have against a car seller who will not provide a smog certificare

Redding, CA |

Seller verbally assurred my husband and I that the vehicle passed smog recebtly and wants to return our monet

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Attorney answers 2


It is illegal in California to sell a car without a current smog certificate. This is the seller's responsibility, not the buyer's. If the vehicle does not have such a certificate, you should be able to return the car and get your money back. If you would like to consult further on this matter, feel free to contact me at my office number, which is 800-517-2877.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this answer is for information only and does not constitute legal advice, nor does it create an attorney-client relationship.



The real problem I have with the situation is the vehicle was purchased on Friday night and I have invested money into getting the car safe to drive on the road. At DMV Monday morning, after paying the fees to transfer title, I was then informed that a smog cert was all that is needed to finish the paperwork. I contacted the Seller to ask for the Smog Cert and was told they don't have one and to just return the vehicle. Do I need to hire an Atty to have my vested interest in said vehicle, compensated?

Martin S Putnam

Martin S Putnam


The question is whether the vehicle can pass a smog test. If it can't, you probably don't want the vehicle and would be well advised to return it and get back the purchase price from the seller. In that situation, if the seller doesn't agree to compensate you for the additional amount that you put into the car, you might consider a small claims action against them for what you put in (assuming it is less than $7500).


Mr. Putnam is correct in his assessment and you should call him. He is an experienced auto fraud atty and will do a nice job for you.



Thank you, It's always nice to hear another professional vouch for advice given. I am very impressed he gave me an answer that I can understand.

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