car exhaustLet’s say you sell your car and you were unaware that you, the seller, are required by law to smog your car within the last 90 days prior to selling it.

And now let’s say that you sold your car unwittingly to a buyer who does not know the California smog laws either, that is until he tries to register his car with the DMV and they will not allow the transfer to take place due to the smog requirement. And now the buyer innocently goes to the smog station and oops, it fails.

A vast Pandora’s box has just opened up. The buyer suddenly and swiftly finds
out that you are the one that is legally responsible for the repairs because it is written in plain sight on the DMV website:

“When a vehicle is more than four model
years old, a seller must provide evidence of a current smog certification
except when one of the following occurs:

• The transfer occurs between a spouse, domestic partner, sibling, child, parent,
grandparent, or grandchild.

• A biennial smog certification was submitted to DMV within 90 days prior to
the vehicle transfer date”.

The buyer will now assess his options, none of which are good for you.
At the very least it completely sours the deal and he hands you the car back.
All that precious time it took to sell the car to him is lost and you are back to
square one. Or worse he will take you court for damages. But guess what? The “estimate”
for the repairs that he has in his hands will be very different and for far more money than
the estimate you would have if you were in control. But you lost that control
at the time of sale when you released the car without a valid smog certificate.

I surely know you have better use of your time rather than having to show up in court with all the
people that you would rather not associate, only to lose.

This is why you should never, ever sell your car without a smog.

Greg Macke – Your Car Angel


Greg Macke is a professional car buyer and consumer advocate. He has worked closely in the industry to improve the buyers experience. His high quality car buying tutorials offer help to the car buying public.