Salem, OR asked in Contracts, Consumer Law and Lemon Law for Oregon

Q: I purchased a used car and they didnt undisclose issues can i sue them?

I purchased a car from a used dealership bought the car and drove home the next day my car stalled on the highway on me almost causing a accident also the day I purchased the vehicle that night I asked the dealer why the headlights were so dim he said its the bulbs but apparently they were broken and it was only the running lights on. when I went to get groceries i noticed the trunk wasn't opening so I used the safety lever and inside was a ton of mold which the dealer told me nothing about same with the broken trunk. I stalled another time on the highway and my car completely didn't drive and than a third time by my house so I got the car towed to the dealer they gave me a loaner to fix my car but said they wont be fixing it cause Im taking it to court. The car was a safety hazard they didn't tell me about it and when questioned told me they had the car and sold it the same day and didnt get to check it, but than told me it was a mistake and they had car 5 months and it had no issues.

1 Lawyer Answer
Joanne Reisman
Joanne Reisman
  • Portland, OR
  • Licensed in Oregon

A: This isn't my area of expertise so you will probably need to still look for an attorney that specializes in used car purchase issues. What I can tell you is that the buyer usually has the responsibility to completely inspect a used car before purchasing. It is wise to call in a professional mechanic to inspect the vehicle before you buy it. There are mechancis who have mobile vans that can go to the car lot and for a fee will do the inspection for you. That said. the sale of a used vehicle is usually "as is", so unless the sales person gives you some type of warranty or guarantee, you buy the car with any problems that car might have and it is then your problem to pay for any repairs. There are some minimum things that a used car dealer may have to correctly represent. For example, the used dealer has to tell you the true mileage on the car. It is a crime to sell a car if the odometer has been tampered with so the true mileage is not showing. There are probably other things that dealer has to do, but here is where my knowledge in this area is limited so I can't tell you what those things are. I can tell you however that the Lemon Law only applies to new cars, not used cars.

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