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  1. #1

    Default What Liability Does a Mechanic Have After Inspecting a Potential Car for Purchase

    My question involves a consumer law issue in the State of: NJ - I was considering purchasing a 2000 Toyota 4Runner from a private seller and wanted to have it checked out by a mechanic. When I told the mechanic that I was bringing over the 4Runner, he said he'd have to check it out thoroughly because they had a tendency to rust. So after I brought him, the car, he said everything checked out mechanically and there was only a minimal amount of rust and the car was in "good shape" Except for the front breaks/rotors and it would need muffler repair soon. So I bought the car. I brought the car to a different mechanic to have the breaks done, and he called me to tell me that the car had extensive amounts of rust in the frame and that it could pose a danger. When I spoke to the first/inspecting mechanic, he said that it was an opinion and that he thought it wasn't that bad. I brought it to a local body shop and the person there said that it did look pretty bad but he's be able to sure it up with a few welds and re-enforcing plates for about $500. I didn't think it was a bad price but I do have a few questions about it. Is the first mechanic responsible in some way? Since I would not have purchased the car had he told me about the rust. Plus, is it OK to weld/re-enforce the frame in the State of NJ?
    Thank you in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Behind a Desk
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    98,846

    Default Re: What Liability Does a Mechanic Have After Inspecting a Potential Car for Purchase

    A difference of opinions does not of itself establish that the first opinion was incorrect or was negligently provided. Do you have any additional evidence?

    Your mechanic should be able to advise you about any state regulations pertaining to the reinforcement of your frame, if any exist. I didn't see any, but I did not search exhaustively.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    3,666

    Default Re: What Liability Does a Mechanic Have After Inspecting a Potential Car for Purchase

    The mechanic owes you nothing. The body shop can tell you that the vehicle is so bad that you can't drive it safely. The body shop wants to make money... Take it to another shop and see what they say.

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