When you buy a used vehicle, the seller must not tell you something about the vehicle which isn't true. If they do, they are said to have misrepresented the vehicle. This applies to their advertising and any statements they make at or before the time of the sale.
In order to show misrepresentation, you would need to show:
- the seller made a representation that was untrue or misleading,
- they knew — or should have known — the representation was untrue or misleading, and
- you relied on the misrepresentation in buying the vehicle.
In showing the seller should have known their representation was untrue or misleading, you could point to:
- they were reckless in making the representation — they recklessly made it without knowing it was true or false, or
- they failed to use reasonable care to ensure the representation was accurate and not untrue or misleading.
If you can show the seller misrepresented the vehicle, you have options:
- You can ask for the seller to pay for any repairs.
- You can cancel the agreement, return the vehicle, and ask for your money back. Act immediately if you want to pursue this option. If you wait, it gets more difficult to prove that a fault is the cause of any problem, and not just normal wear and tear.
- You can ask for a discount if you still want the vehicle.
For more detail, see our page on if you have a problem with a used car you bought from a private seller. It includes steps you can take to deal with the problem. For example, it includes a template for a complaint letter you could send to the seller, and options for bringing a legal action.