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A friend bought a car privately, the engine broke two weeks later..


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Do you guys think there is anything he can do?


I appreciate that a private sale means he has very little in the way of consumer rights.


Any help with this would be really appreciated :)

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A bit more info, kind Sir?


He purchased a car in a private sale. Within two weeks the engine had totally given up the ghost. He has gone back to the lady who sold him the vehicle, she has simply stated 'sold as seen'. He paid around a thousand pounds, there is no receipt.


I can ask for more info from him if needed :)

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How was the car advertised?

Does he still have a copy of the ad?

What's specifically wrong with the engine?

Type of car, age, mileage?

Did he get a chance to inspect/test drive?

Finally, I take it there is no way this could be anything but a private sale? Not a trader masquerading as a private seller?


In short, if the sale is indeed a private one, then the only statutory rights he has are that the goods should be "as described", hence the importance of the ad being kept.


Otherwise, it is very much a case of "buyer beware". Having said that, "sold as seen" has no legal value whatsoever, so that means nothing at all. His best recourse would be if there was a way he could show that she knew the car was defective and didn't say, as depending on the age and price paid, there could be a implicit expectation that the car would last more than 2 weeks. That's what all the info I requested is necessary.

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The biggest hope here is as bookie has said, is he really a dealer.


An indication of that could be, how long the woman owned the car, is her name on the V5, did he visit her house to make the purchase and are there any old MoT certificates with the car.

It might be worth checking the Vosa site to see what the mileage was on previous tests.

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