2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 15:44
Defects in a new car are an ugly thing. But who pays for their removal? Where the door is stuck, a ruling by the Karlsruhe Higher Regional Court has now created more clarity.
If defects appear within two years of purchasing a new car, the seller must correct them if they were already there when the vehicle was handed over. If he refuses to remedy the defect or if this is unsuccessful, the buyer can withdraw from the purchase contract. This was decided by the Karlsruhe Higher Regional Court in a judgment (Az.: 8 U 34/08).
In the negotiated case, the buyer of a new car took legal action. A good year
after the car was purchased, a vehicle door
could no longer be fully closed due to a defect. During the journey she had to be held
so that she could not jump up. The dealership that sold the car
then carried out several free repairs without being able
to remedy the defect. The owner then wanted to
withdraw from the sales contract, but the dealer refused.
The car buyer's subsequent lawsuit was dismissed in the first instance
because, according to the judges, he could not prove that the
defect had existed from the start. Only in the case of a defect that occurs
during the first year after the purchase is the law
presumed that it already existed at the time of purchase and is therefore
obliged to repair it. Thereafter, the buyer usually has to prove this, otherwise
the seller's obligation to remedy defects does not apply.
In the second instance before the Higher Regional Court in Karlsruhe, however, the plaintiff was then right and was able to withdraw from the purchase contract. The defendant car dealership had already accepted the obligation of so-called supplementary performance through its reserved free attempts to remedy defects in the form of repairs. (mid)