Claremore, OK asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts, Consumer Law and Criminal Law for Oklahoma

Q: If person buying a car gives you a small amount to hold the car, then doesn't pay the full price did u legally sell it

okay guy wanted to buy an old pickup we had, we agreed to a purchase and he gave me $100 to hold it while he got the money. Instead he came back and just took the truck. I still have the title he did no paperwork. The police said that he didn't steal the car I sold it to him for $100. That anytime money changes hands over a car regardless of the amount it it is a Legal sale in Oklahoma.

1 Lawyer Answer
David A. Cincotta
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Oklahoma City, OK
  • Licensed in Oklahoma

A: It appears you have a few issues that must be addressed. One is whether a crime was committed - which if so the police could enter the vehicle as stolen in the national database. Another is whether you had a valid contract with the purchaser. Third, is whether an actual sale of the vehicle occurred. I would suggest you contact an attorney immediately to work through these issues. Dealing with the police after an office has already indicated that no crime was committed, would be best handled by an attorney. While the police officer may be of the opinion that no crime occurred, the officer's statement regarding what constitutes a sale is really something the officer should have completely avoided. Generally speaking, one is required to transfer title to a vehicle when it is sold. A seller who refuses may be in breach of a contract, because without the title, the vehicle will remain in the seller's name and the purchaser will be precluded from legally selling the vehicle or otherwise transferring ownership. If, in your situation, where the seller claims no sale occurred or that the purchaser did not pay the agreed upon price for the vehicle, the seller may be able to seek relief through the courts to have the vehicle returned or to obtain a monetary judgment for the remaining amount due. Again, I would recommend you speak to an attorney to assess all options you may have.

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