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  1. #1
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    Default Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: I recently traded in my car October 2016 and I received a summons in the mail regarding an accident that that car was in around November. I have a lawyer from the other party contacting me trying to take legal action against me cause for some reason the car dealership failed to transfer the title. Is it legal for a car lot to allow someone to drive a vehicle off their lot it the title has not been transferred? If so can I take some legal action for allowing this to even happen? I think this is crazy and I am unable to find the answers I need. Please help.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    This is in what state? Has a lawsuit actually been filed?

    Do you have proof that you sold the car to the dealership? If not, contact the dealership to get documentation of the trade-in and, in doing so, gently inquire about what happened to the car after you traded it in. Odds are the car was sold by the dealership to or through a third party, such as a vehicle auctioneer, as opposed to selling it directly.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    Quote Quoting Ncowan6405
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    My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: I recently traded in my car October 2016 and I received a summons in the mail regarding an accident that that car was in around November. I have a lawyer from the other party contacting me trying to take legal action against me cause for some reason the car dealership failed to transfer the title. Is it legal for a car lot to allow someone to drive a vehicle off their lot it the title has not been transferred? If so can I take some legal action for allowing this to even happen?
    As a practical matter probably not.

    But more important is that you need to figure out how to defend yourself against the lawsuit. You received a summons. That means there is no "trying" to take legal action, there IS legal action.

    Read the summons. It'll tell you what you need to do and by when you have to do it. If you don't respond properly you could end up with a default judgment against you.

    While you are addressing the summons, presumably when you traded your car you got a dated contract. I hope you kept it. That should be all you need as a defense to show you didn't own the car at the time of the accident.

    Provide a copy of your paperwork to the plaintiff's lawyer and ask if that's enough to get you dismissed from the lawsuit. If it is, make sure he files the dismissal with the court (confirm it with the court) and sends you a copy.

    However, if that's not done before the deadline on the summons you still have to address the summons by filing a timely answer if required, or appear in court if required.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    If you have received a summons and complaint for a lawsuit, turn the lawsuit over to your auto insurance company along with your documentation that the car was sold.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    Leave no stone unturned.

    But this was no longer a "covered auto" after the trade was made.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    Quote Quoting Mr. Knowitall
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    This is in what state? Has a lawsuit actually been filed?

    Do you have proof that you sold the car to the dealership? If not, contact the dealership to get documentation of the trade-in and, in doing so, gently inquire about what happened to the car after you traded it in. Odds are the car was sold by the dealership to or through a third party, such as a vehicle auctioneer, as opposed to selling it directly.
    The state is KY. There has been a summons I am not familiar with how the process actually works but they are seeking legal action. I do have proof of the sale and the dates are on there. The only problem is I contacted the other parties lawyer that issued the summons and told them about the situation, they advised the only thing they want is the title and if the title was in my name during the time of the accident then I would be liable for the damages. I then went to the dealership and discussed this with them the ironic thing is I sold them the car Oct 7, 2016 and they transferred the car out of my name December 29,2016. The even bigger issue is they never sold the car to this other person the person that caused the wreck in the car still under my name is the owner of the car lots son.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    Quote Quoting Ncowan6405
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    The only problem is I contacted the other parties lawyer that issued the summons and told them about the situation, they advised the only thing they want is the title and if the title was in my name during the time of the accident then I would be liable for the damages.
    Never take legal advice from your enemy.

    The lawyer wants to scare you into paying and is betting you have no clue as to how to respond to a lawsuit.

    Does the summons instruct you to file a written answer or just appear in court on a certain date?

    How much are you being sued for?

    Is the Plaintiff an insurance company or an individual? Something else?

    Small claims court or regular court? That you received the summons in the mail suggests small claims court but confirm that.

    Quote the allegations listed on the complaint.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Former Owner Sued Over a Car Accident, New Owner Didn't Transfer Title

    Turn the lawsuit over to your insurance company, along with documentation that you sold the car before the accident.

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