Toledo, OH asked in Contracts for Ohio

Q: We sold a car to a family friend and now not getting paid.

OHIO, So my boyfriend had a car and my mom's friend needed a car. He put a lot if money into it as she promised she would pay him (in payments) for the car. He wasn't even. Asking for the full total of how much he had spent on it getting it reliable for her to drive. He didn't get anything In Writing unfortunately because we've known her for so long we didn't think she would do anything like this but now she's completely refusing to talk to us or even pay. We have 6 kids and he put all of our extra money into this car and now getting nothing back. Is there anything we can do? My boyfriend wants to put a lien on it at this point but since they didn't have any contract written up is that possible?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Jennifer Nicole Brown
Jennifer Nicole Brown
  • Maumee, OH
  • Licensed in Ohio

A: The potential answers to your question depend, in part, upon some facts not included in your summary. In Ohio, the Certificate of Title is evidence of ownership pursuant to Ohio Revised Code 4505.04.

Did your husband transfer title to the vehicle to the new owner, or is the title currently still in his name? If the vehicle is still in his name, then he can show to a court that he still has an ownership interest to try to recoup his money, although there may be disputed testimony over the purchase price without anything in writing.

If he transferred the title, then she became the owner upon the transfer of title. If he has no evidence of the agreement to pay for the vehicle, he may have difficulties getting a court to recognize his interest in the titled good absent her admitting that he is/was the owner, and she still owes him money. See Revised Code 4505.04(B)(2). He would also have a trouble placing any lien without proof of an ownership interest or security interest.

Most seller hold title until the payment for the vehicle. Those that finance vehicles, such as banks, typically file to perfect their security interest under Ohio Revised Code 1309.

If he has no written agreement and no title, then he has a very difficult case. His best option is to seek direct legal assistance.

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