Can I sue for suffering of grades and to get my money back for repairs I have to make? 11 Answers as of May 21, 2013

My husband and I bought a computer. The owner told us it works or we wouldn’t have got it. Well that same day we start it up and it doesn’t work. Needs a new hard drive. The guy says we don’t have a claim that it was sold as is but his ad doesn’t state that. he said he would fix it but hasn’t and when I call him or text him he doesn’t answer or contact back the only way I can get this guy to text or call me back is when I say I’m going to take it to the law. I have the ad the emails the phone records and text messages. My husband’s grades has gone downhill the whole point of getting the computer is so we wouldn’t have to find a babysitter so he could go do homework, with a computer he can do it at home. To buy a new hard drive is 80 to install it is more. Can I sue to suffering of grades and to pay back repairs we have to do to it?

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The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq.
The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq. | John J. Carney
You should test out anything that you buy used. If there is no written guarantee then it is sold "as is" and you get what you paid for, no more. You cannot sue for his grades or consequential damages.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 11/16/2012
Hamblin Law Office | Sally Hamblin
No, to suffering of grades. Yes, to get your money back.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 11/16/2012
Lawyer for Indie Media
Lawyer for Indie Media | Sue Basko
A used computer purchased from an individual will usually have no implied warranty, unless the ads created an implied warranty by describing the computer as "working" or some other way that created an implied warranty that the computer would be operable, and for how long it would be operable. The seller need not state "As Is," because there is no implied warranty unless one has been created by the wording of the ads. When purchasing a used computer, the rule is "Caveat Emptor," which means "Buyer Beware."


However, you might state to the seller that you want your money back and that if the computer works, as he says, he can simply sell it to someone else. Explain to the seller that you are a very poor family and you cannot afford to buy a computer that does not work. Aside from pleas to his sense of fairness, I do not think there is any legal remedy for buying a second hand computer that has no stated warranty.


If you and your husband checked the computer before you bought it and found it to be in good working order, how is it that now it suddenly needs a hard drive? I have seen situations where people think their hard drive has died, when in fact all they need is a new $10 mouse or a $3 connector. You may wish to try such simple remedies to see if they work.


Since your husband is a student, he should ask at his school if there is any sort of program to help a needy student get a computer. Many schools have such a fund or can include money in a grant or loan. Some have good deals with payment plans through a particular seller. The school wants your husband to have a computer just as much as he wants to have one. He might also put his own ads around the school and online stating that a needy student/ parent needs to be given a used computer in good working condition. Someone may have one they are happy to give.

Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 11/13/2012
Roe Law Firm
Roe Law Firm | Theodore M. Roe
This is one of those questions that makes me wonder what is going through peoples heads. Did you know it was a used computer? Yes. Did the seller make any express warranties? No. Regardless of whether the seller said it was as is or not is irrelevant. If you told him exactly what you were going to be using it for and he said it would do that job, there may be a breach of fitness for a particular purpose. Consequently, you may recover the repair costs of $80. However, under no theory would you be entitled to recover for your husbands poor grades because you could not get a babysitter. Such a lawsuit would be without merit and could likely open you up to liability for bringing a frivolous lawsuit. When buying a used product without warranty, remember the caveat "buyer beware."
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 11/14/2012
Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
You can sue for the repairs needed but not the grades suffering.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 11/14/2012
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Sure you can, just be prepared to cough up a couple hundred bucks per hour in legal fees that your lawyer will need to sue for you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/14/2012
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    Sue him in small claims court. He claimed it works.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 11/13/2012
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    You can sue for whatever you want. What attorney is his right mind will take a case about failing grades? How are going to prove but for the computer his grades would have been higher.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 11/13/2012
    Sebby Law Office
    Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
    You can recover an amount equal to what it will cost you to get the computer fixed and working at the level you were promised. However, the expense of suing is likely to be more than the cost of fixing the computer and it may take several months to get a judgement. I doubt you can recover for your husband's dropping grades unless his coursework specifically requires a computer and there is no access to one elsewhere such as a library.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 11/13/2012
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A | R. Jason de Groot
    No, you cannot sue for suffering of grades. You might be able to sue for your money back, under a breach of implied warranty theory.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 11/13/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    No.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/21/2013
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