Legal Question in Consumer Law in Massachusetts

Hello- question regarding purchasing a car in Mass,private sale.

Seller agrees to price offered, signed a purchase and sale agreement and took our deposit. Seller and buyer signatures plus witness signature.

Seller contacted buyer 2 days later and said she is sending back the deposit as she had a higher offer via an eBay auction.

What recourse do I have? Can I compel the sale? Can I get a lien on the vehicle to keep it from being transferred until it get to court or settled out of court?

What are my options?

Asked on 9/03/13, 6:26 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

John Skinner, III Associated Attorneys of New England

You've described a breach of contract. You could sue on these facts. One measure of your damages would be the difference in the price you contracted for, and the price the vehicle sold for. E.G. if you had a contract to buy for $500, and they breached and sold for $2,000, you could sue and potentially recover $1,500.

One thing to note is that it is seldom worth your time, money, and aggravation to sue over things like this. They did a shabby thing in breaking the deal, but at least they did the right in that they promptly returned your deposit.

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Answered on 9/04/13, 6:20 am

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