What are my rights if I recently bought a used car from a private party and they knowingly lied to me about the condition and mileage on the car?

UPDATED: Mar 17, 2012

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UPDATED: Mar 17, 2012Fact Checked

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What are my rights if I recently bought a used car from a private party and they knowingly lied to me about the condition and mileage on the car?

They told me it ran great and had a short which was why it wouldn’t start. My mechanic found they had disconected a wire preventing the vehicle from starting. He reconected the wire and it started right up. But it was blowing smoke and making a horrible noise from the motor. The mechanic said the engine had spun a bearing and was shot. Also, they signed an affidavit stating the incorrect mileage for the vehicle.

Asked on March 17, 2012 under General Practice, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

To knowingly misrepresent, or lie, about material, or important, factors of a car's condition when selling it is fraud. Fraud would entitle you to rescind the transaction (i.e. return the car, get your money back) and/or sue for monetary compensation.  Indeed, it may be the case that you can seek additional compensation, beyond the actual damages or  losses/costs you've suffered, under the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices and Consummer Protectoin Law. I've included a link to the law below for your reference; you should probably meet with an attorney to discuss your potential recourse and options.


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