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Old 04-26-2012, 09:23 PM
 
10,868 posts, read 41,128,193 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbohm View Post
get a copy of the check you gave him from your bank, and contact the local PD, and have them go with you to get the title to the car. if he cant produce it then, you can offer, i front of the cop as a witness, to either sue the guy in civil court, of have the cop arrest him on fraud charges.
Sorry, but this is BS.

A "cop" is not allowed to be involved in their professional capacity in a civil dispute. The situation presented is a civil dispute between the buyer and seller, and any "cop" I know would not make an arrest on fraud charges absent a warrant for that arrest. A LEO on the streets is not a judge and jury, nor a DA.

The only extent a LEO being involved is if you request their presence for the express purpose of keeping the peace while you confront the seller with your demand to produce the title or face a civil action. At that, you'll have to convince a dispatcher or supervisor that there is some question as to the nature of your meeting with the seller; ie, is there some reasonable concern that your meeting will escalate to some level of violence?

It is a felony in most states for you to threaten somebody with a criminal action if they don't perform on a civil matter. Don't go there, or you'll be seeing a courtroom for your own criminal charges.

Last edited by sunsprit; 04-26-2012 at 09:54 PM..
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Old 04-26-2012, 09:39 PM
 
10,868 posts, read 41,128,193 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fighter 1 View Post
OK first let me say I am not a lawyer. But having worked in the auto motive business for 34 yrs.

I have come across this situation a few times usually he can't give the title because he doesn't have possession of it. What you should have done was go to the bank and cash the check with him then get the title .

Now in your situation all you need to do is mail him a demand letter, in the letter demand that within 24 hr he produce the title or return your money in full. The laws are in your favor because a person can't legally enter into a contract to sell something you don't own .

If he doesn't give you the title or refund your money , now you can go to small claims court , file your action , get him served by the court and he must appear, if he doesn't appear then you win judgment against him. Now you can go to DMV and request a title search which will show who really has the title( lien Holders name). DMV at this point can cancel his driving privileges until he resolves the issues.
Agreed, most likely the seller doesn't have clear title to the vehicle so cannot sign it over to the buyer. Perhaps there is a lien on the car and the seller took the buyer's money and then didn't pay off the lien.

But one needs to know the laws of the state where this transaction took place to be able to pursue the actions your describe. Some of the process you describe, leading to canceling driving privileges, may be in one state but not in most others.

There's also going to be clouded issues here. The car is now damaged goods, but if the buyer is going to demand a full refund for the purchase price, then they also cannot seek to keep the car, too. Unfortunately, when they would return the car to the seller in that exchange, the seller is not getting back what they sold. Some states allow for a per mile use of the car fee to be charged by the seller along with deductions for damage to the car during the time the buyer had possession of the car.

This is one of those situations where both the buyer and seller didn't perform their due diligence to complete the transaction. IMO, the buyer should have only given the seller the check which needed to clear the bank at the time of getting a bill of sale and not taken possession of the car. Upon the seller collecting good funds for the check, then the buyer would have given the cash balance to the seller in exchange for a clear title signed over to the buyer and then taken possession of the car. That's a complicated transaction to do in the excitement of buying a car when a buyer wants to drive it away, but then if the deal goes haywire, they have to resolve problems like the OP has presented.

At this point, a demand letter for the car title would be a prudent action. If the seller cannot or will not produce the title, then the buyer's most likely avenue of recourse will be to head to small claims court because the amount involved is far less than would be prudent to pursue with a lawyer. Absent that title showing up quickly, this will all take time to resolve and the buyer will need to either get the car fixed in the interim or find another set of wheels while seeking a court order and collection. That's an important distinction, too: getting a court ordered judgement in small claims court is not the same as actually collecting on the judgement. Collections is a whole 'nother step in the process towards getting the matter finalized.

Last edited by sunsprit; 04-26-2012 at 09:47 PM..
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Old 04-26-2012, 09:48 PM
 
1,739 posts, read 626,730 times
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Just curious about something..you did mention that you have the canceled check and the receipt - guessing from the cash payment..he did sign the receipt, right? Just want to check that he actually "signed" it and didn't print or leave off his name. Otherwise it might be said you made up the receipt (wrote it yourself).
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Old 04-26-2012, 10:00 PM
 
10,868 posts, read 41,128,193 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HelloWorldItsMe View Post
Just curious about something..you did mention that you have the canceled check and the receipt - guessing from the cash payment..he did sign the receipt, right? Just want to check that he actually "signed" it and didn't print or leave off his name. Otherwise it might be said you made up the receipt (wrote it yourself).
That's why a "bill of sale", signed by both seller and buyer, is an important document in the transaction. Proper paperwork for the deal would have included documentation of how the payment was to be made; ie, so much in cash, so much in a personal check, and receipted.
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Old 04-26-2012, 10:37 PM
 
6 posts, read 128,522 times
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Thanks for the the helpful informational, folks!

I'M IN TEXAS BY THE WAY.


I do have a bill of sale that we both signed. I guess if I'm crazy enough to hand over 3700 then I must be crazy enough to accept a non-signed receipt...HAHAHA. I gotta find humor in this some where.
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Old 04-26-2012, 10:42 PM
 
6 posts, read 128,522 times
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The receipt states the date, amount, and the VIN. We both signed it, and I checked his ID. I get mixed informatio about this though. Some people say it is worthless, while others say a legal document. I'm not sure.

I've been thinking of consulting an attorney. The thing is that I'm already out 3700, so I don't want to spend any more of my cash on a lost cause.
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Old 04-27-2012, 12:05 AM
 
1,166 posts, read 4,288,351 times
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How about small claims court, you can file a suit. Have a friend call, introduce himself as your attorney and see if that scares him off. Also sometimes up to 6 weeks you can go to your bank and put a stop payment to the check, call the bank or better go there tomorrow morning.
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Old 04-27-2012, 05:21 AM
 
Location: Earth
4,227 posts, read 20,280,133 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stratford, Ct. Resident View Post
Who the hell hands over $3700 without getting the title???????
My thoughts exactly....too late now, but OP in the future, I suggest you go to a bank and do your car buying transactions, and ensure you get the title on the spot when the cash and checks are handed over.
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Old 04-27-2012, 05:56 AM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
41,505 posts, read 49,538,721 times
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Hire an lawyer and follow his advice.
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:42 AM
 
9,326 posts, read 18,977,259 times
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Lesson learned. If you have the money fir a car give a cashiers check snd the title isnt given , cancelnthe cashiers check. Or complete transaction in bank.
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