Do i owe them and can i counter sue?

<span style="font-size: small; font-family: Calibri;">I sold a car privately. The buyer agreed to make payments of 300/month. I told them the car would stay in my possession until the agreed upon $2500 was paid in full. After making the first 2 payments totaling 600. They have missed the last 3 payments and are now wanting to back out of the deal and want the 600 back. We did have a hand written contract stating that the car would stay in my possession until paid in full but there are no provisions in the contract concerning cancelation. I told the buyer that I would list the car for sale again and would try to sell it for 2500. If i in fact do sell for 2500 then I would give them the 600 back. They are threatening to take me to small claims. My first question is do I actually owe them the 600 in return? And my second question is can I counter sue for degradation of the value of the vehicle since it has been sitting since May and now has mechanical problems? Also if I have a viable lawsuit against them, what documentation would I need to prove the value of the mechanical problems?</span>


Asked almost 7 years ago in Richlands, North Carolina
Categories: Contracts

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Jon Welborn

Answer by Jon Welborn

VerifiedNorth Carolina lawyer

In order to fully advise you I would have to see the formalized contract even though oral contracts are enforceable. But generally speaking - it appears that you do a have a legally binding contract in that there is offer ($2500), acceptance, consideration (he pays you and you give him the car), and I presume the ability to contract (that neither of you are minors, incompetent, etc). If he fails to abide by the terms and conditions I think this weakens his argument to sue you for breach of contract. However I guess he could argue unjust enrichment. It would seem to me that you could sue him for breach of contract to me but realistically not sure that a few hundred dollars is worth either of you initiating legal action... Especially not considering the costs of attorneys and/or court costs. My advice is I would not worry about being sued.... And if you are then consult further with a lawyer so they can review the contract and the allegations asserted against you.

Posted almost 7 years ago

Please note that this is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice to you. Legal advice pertaining to your particular situation can only be provided by a lawyer who has met with you to obtain all pertinent background information necessary to give you a formal legal opinion. For formal legal advice, hire a lawyer (many give a free first consultation). Contact Jon Welborn, or search the Lawyer Directory.

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