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Money Moral Dilemma: Should I ask my friend for money after he sold the car we gave him?

edited 11 October 2022 at 2:08PM in Marriage, relationships & families
51 replies 36.9K views


  • keithyno.1keithyno.1 Forumite
    76 Posts
    Eighth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    No, you can't ask for the money he made from selling the car - you gifted it to him, so it was then his to do with as he pleased.

    BUT it sounds like he told you a downright lie when he said he'd scrapped the car but in fact had sold it. That to me would be completely unacceptable..instead of being straight up and honest with you, he told you a fib.
    It's as if he's flinging your generosity back in your face and sticking two fingers up to you in the process.

    So my advice would be, forget about the money he got from selling the car and put it down to experience. But ditch this guy as a friend - it will be his loss. Nobody needs friends like him.
  • REJPREJP Forumite
    325 Posts
    Sixth Anniversary 100 Posts Name Dropper
    Sharp practice by your "friend".  Now in your ex friends list?  A real friend would have told you what he had done, not lied about it.  
  • jedavjedav Forumite
    26 Posts
    Second Anniversary 10 Posts
    Presumably ownership was transferred to him in which case it is his to do with as he wishes.  It's interesting that he felt he couldn't refuse it, even though he couldn't afford the work needed, and that he felt he had to lie to you about what happened.  You certainly seem to have helped him, in a manner you may not have intended.
  • GroomGroom Forumite
    43 Posts
    Second Anniversary 10 Posts
    No way - you gave him the car as a free gift, what he did with it after that is up to him. It would have been totally different if you'd just lent it to him. 
  • 19menina4519menina45 Forumite
    1 Post
    First Post
    As others have said, if you GAVE it to him you really cant ask for anything back, but if it was LENT for an unspecified time to help him out then , you have been denied the right to mend the car yourself or use it again for spares or whatever and he has abused your friendship. . So I think that you would be best considering this as a good warning for the future. You have lost the car or the money it might have been worth, but you have found out that this "friend" is untrustworthy, lies , and whilst you might retain some superficial friendship with him, you would be unlikely to be caught like this again, wont trust him with any of your belongings in the future or be prepared to lend him money or objects.You will also no doubt, be very cautious about any thing like this in the future , with other people . So it is sad, when someone treats you like this, when you only wanted to help, but dont let it make you think that everyone is so untrustworthy   I think it is better to think well of people and get the odd wrong un, than mistrust everyone.  At the end of the day, you and your family did a kind and helpful thing, and when you look back you know you did what you could to help.Dont let it simmer try and let it go ,and look forward to better things 
  • Bigfra46Bigfra46 Forumite
    16 Posts
    Sixth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Although you gave him it to keep to help him find a job he went and sold it behind your back which wasnt nice. If it broke down and he couldn't afford to repair he should have told you this then asked if you wanted it back, or could he sell it.
  • HodgieHodgie Forumite
    19 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    You could have lent it to him but it was a gift - your decision.  End of chat.

  • PaulTeePaulTee Forumite
    11 Posts
    10 Posts Second Anniversary
    It could be that he was so hard up that  the only way he could survive was by selling the car that you gave him. Times are hard and getting harder. Would possibly have been very embarrassing for him to say to you 'I am so hard up that I do not have enough money to survive' and to save face told you that the car needed repairs rather than he sold it to enable him to eat.
  • dirtmotherdirtmother Forumite
    134 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    What if you were looking at this situation not as the people who gave him the car but as other friends? You might think he had made a poor decision to get rid of a car that might have made it easier for him to find work... or you might think he has made a wise decision - one person's generous gift is another's poisoned chalice.

    One of the elements here is the conviction of the givers that the car had no problems. That doesn't mean that it had no problems, and even more so, it doesn't mean that it didn't develop problems after you gave it away. That's always an awkward situation... and giving someone a car is a gift that comes with strings not of your making anyway as there are costs for the recipient which he may not have been able to manage (road tax, insurance). (Perhaps he didn't do due diligence before accepting the gift)

    Being in financial difficulties doesn't bring out the best in people and panic decisions get made that don't seem to make sense to those in less difficult circumstances  - the priority is day to day. I reckon there are some possible flags in this story that he may be in more trouble than it seems.

  • killerferret666killerferret666 Forumite
    47 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    I actually did this myself.

    My mate passed his driving test, couldnt afford a car and i was getting a newer one so said he could have mine to use .

    Only two things i asked for at the end is he sells it and gives me the cash. Of course i think id have sold it for a little more. But he sold it and gave me the cash. Helps it was a friend of 25+ years
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