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Thread: EAA Sales Agreement

  1. #1

    EAA Sales Agreement

    Hi,

    Wondering if someone can help. I paid a deposit on an Experimental I purchased and when the guy came to deliver the plane it wasn't close to the condition it had been described as and shown in the pictures I'd seen (I think they were old pictures or photoshopped). Anyway, then guy refused to give me my deposit back and now I am faced with having to pursue a lawsuit.

    Has anyone else had something like this happen to them? I'm looking for advice. We both signed the regular EAA Sales agreement.

    TIA!

    James.

  2. #2

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    As I understand it the EAA sales document is intended as a guideline for your attorneys to use to create an actual agreement? It is mostly meant to be a waiver of liability for selling an experimental aircraft and the buyer accepting the risk. I didn't read anything covering deposit returns?

    There is a section covering buyer issues:

    "Seller has made Aircraft available to Purchaser at Purchaserís convenience without limitation prior to the delivery of Aircraft to enable Purchaser to have a PRE-PURCHASE INSPECTION performed by Purchaser or Purchaserís agent. Accordingly, Purchaser acknowledges that Purchaser has had Aircraft and its records inspected by an FAA licensed mechanic or by an FAA approved repair station. Purchaser acknowledges that Purchaser is satisfied with the workmanship and condition of Aircraft and that it is suitable for Purchaserís own purposes."

    Was a pre-purchase inspection done by you or your agent? Did your attorney include a clause regarding deposit refunds if you were not satisfied?
    Last edited by CHICAGORANDY; 09-22-2019 at 04:28 PM.
    "Don't believe everything you see or read on the internet" - Abraham Lincoln

  3. #3

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    Very sorry this happened to you but as always in sales transactions outside of a legitimate retail store or online operations, it's Caveat Emptor-buyer beware. I'm not looking to admonish you but why would you provide a deposit for something unseen?

    This is a civil matter, not a criminal one. The seller is just another sleaze bag fraud artist. As the seller refuses to refund your deposit under misrepresentation circumstances, your only recourse is to sue for damages both real and punitive.

    How much is the deposit? Will your legal costs exceed the deposit amount? If so, then it would just be plain dumb to proceed with legal action. Will a lawyer take your case on contigency if worthwhile to him/her? If so, it might be favourable for you to proceed in this fashion.

    You, like so many others who have been victims of larceny, have learned a valuable life lesson. You likely will never be a victim again.

  4. #4
    Thank you for the advice and I appreciate you being candid. Yes, I made a mistake and trusted someone. They described the airplane as a 9.5(interior) and 9.5(exterior) and the pictures seemed to verify that, until I saw it. Chips in the wings, cowling chipped, wheel pants cracked and seats worn/interior paintwork heavily chipped. The deposit was $5000. I can take it to the small claims court as I also have the advertisement showing pictures and I also took pictures of how it actually is.

    You live and learn. Sometimes the painful way.

  5. #5

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    For that amount small claims court is a perfect place to go. You act for yourself, no lawyer fees, and bring all your evidence and any witnesses. SCC will also usually provide you with a written "how to" proceed to bring your case to court. Just remember this: even if you get a judgement you may not ever get paid. So get some advice on how to go about placing a lien on his property. When he finds out that you have done this, he'll pay you back the $5K plus any other costs SCC granted you faster than you can say "I refuse to be a victim."

  6. #6

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    Go to small claims court. its perfect for this sort of thing. I have done it a few times and never lost, tied one and won four. The tie was unfortunanly against a friend who would not show up to finish a job, turns out he is a severe alcoholic, otherwise a decent guy. We agreed on a price in the end.
    THen the local shop installed the wrong part, almost same part number, but not quite. I called and wrote them and no response at all. The night before the court case some big shot CEO from Chicago phones me and offers half the cost if I drop the case. BS. I went to court, and pretty easily got my $2200 back. I did have the evidence, a letter from the Beech shop that showed the correct part number.
    I had one case where a supposed friend conned me out of a small loan, when I went to court he didn't show up. I found out he had 23 previous judgements against him and had no assets in his name, so there was nothing for the sheriff to seize. That may well be the case with this seller. Anyway your cost will be likely less than $100, give it a try. The reality is that you are buying a used airplane, not one with brand new perfect paint, so the judge may or may not side with you. I'd bet you lunch the "seller" doesn't even show up in court.
    Last edited by Bill Greenwood; 09-23-2019 at 06:21 AM.

  7. #7
    Thank you, Gents. I appreciate the words of encouragement. Seller told me the paint was pristine and that the plane is 'like new' (as per pictures he sent). Even the aircraft bluebook rating scale describes a 9/9 as 'Interior is new. There are no scratches, cracks, crazing or other evidence of use. Paint is new. Airframe and paint are in excellent condition with no scratches or dents'. It certainly wasn't like that!

    Like you guys say, it's worth a shot and I'll file for my costs. If nothing else I'll get a free lunch!

  8. #8

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    Let us know how things turn out - best of luck recovering your losses. An unfortunate but valuable learning experience for us all.
    "Don't believe everything you see or read on the internet" - Abraham Lincoln

  9. #9

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    James, I think you've got a good chance, but anticipate what the other side may claim, that they are relying on the written contract which takes precedent over "he said" and they may claim you are backing out of the deal because you don't have the funds or don't want to complete the deal as agreed to. Be polite to the judge, he/she has perhaps a half hour to decide which party is in the right. You want "interior as new" but how old is the plane and how many hours on it? Be sure to bring the before and after photos, the judge cant much go on your word on what the other guy said. Just you going to court will be some deterrent to this type of seller, unless they are a real polished pro and do this regularly. So many people are a lion in the bar at night and a sheep next morning.

    The kid's coach who cheated me out of $2000 did this to others and was clever enough at it that he knew that $2000 was the upper limit of a civil misdemeanor back then before it becomes a felony.
    Last edited by Bill Greenwood; 09-23-2019 at 08:14 AM.

  10. #10
    Sirota's Avatar
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    Check your local statutes. Many municipalities limit small claims actions to $2 - 3,000. If you're limited, you can still sue in small claims court to the maximum limit and write-off the difference. I'm not sure I agree with Floatsflyer. You might be able to make a case for fraud or fraudulent inducement. Finding a city or county attorney willing to take the case is another discussion but it's worth the time to discuss it with them. I'd also post the seller's name here, Barnstormer, anywhere you can. Guilt or embarrassment might convince the guy to cooperate. If nothing else, you might be able to save the next guy some time and money.

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