Craigslist transaction went south...


Hello,
Hope everyone is doing great. I have a situation here and I am hoping you guys can help. 
I have sold a home theater receiver to someone. We met at gas station and everything went fine. It happend on Sep 4th.  Today (Sep 15th)  i got a text from the same guy saying he just installed and the receiver is not working. He is going to take legal action against me. it was working receiver and i never had any problems with it. I don't know what to do now. . I am legal immigrant and working on visa.  Please advise.
Here is my ebay profile:  https://www.ebay.com/usr/manizthegreat



Previewmanizkrishnan
Taking legal action after 11 days seems awfully extreme did you try just offering his money back and taking the receiver back?
I am not a lawyer, but I can't imagine he'll get very far with 'legal' action. It may end up in small claims court. 

Save and document all of your interactions with him, just in case.
9/15/2017 MightyText - +16172858469

Text messages with +16172858469
[email protected]
Hi, I am interested in your rx-v673. Will you take
120$? Are you available this afternoon?
September 4th 2017, 12:19:07 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:20:16 pm 
Yes I would. I will be at home till 3pm
Ok. Can I come by now/soon? I am at Val Vista
and mckellips.
September 4th 2017, 12:21:06 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:21:56 pm 
We can meet at Circle K between Queen Creek
and Gilbert Rd Chandler.
Ok. When is good for you?
September 4th 2017, 12:22:35 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:23:00 pm 
12:45?
Looks like it is 35 minutes from me. Say 1:00?
September 4th 2017, 12:25:09 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:25:19 pm 
Sure Thanks
I also will need to go to an atm. I will assume
circle k has one.
September 4th 2017, 12:26:21 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:27:28 pm 
I think so. But Take your time. Don't hurry
Ok. I'll let you know when I am 10 minutes away.
September 4th 2017, 12:29:21 pm
9/15/2017 MightyText - +16172858469
September 4th 2017, 12:29:34 pm 
Sounds good
10 minutes out.
September 4th 2017, 12:51:36 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:51:58 pm 
Okay I will be there
I am in a silver vw wagon
September 4th 2017, 12:52:56 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:53:10 pm 
Red Camry
I am at pump 18
September 4th 2017, 12:59:03 pm
September 4th 2017, 12:59:15 pm 
I just parked in front of the pay phone
Ok. I see you.
September 4th 2017, 12:59:34 pm
Seems that you have gotten one over on a
stranger. The receiver does not output steady
sound. I just hooked it up and no output. After a
while it has some sound output, not a little
white later there is again none and I am unable
to get anything out.
September 15th 2017, 7:34:52 pm
This was the rx-v673 that you sold me.
September 15th 2017, 7:35:22 pm
At least I have a photo of your license plate so I
will pursue legal action if I do not heat from you.
September 15th 2017, 7:37:26 pm
9/15/2017 MightyText - +16172858469
https://mightytext.net/web8/#mode=quick&msgid=fad0160e-cc92-46ef-a111-b11d53e345fc&print=1 3/3
September 15th 2017, 7:41:14 pm 
Hey you bought the receiver on September 4th.
It has been more than 10 days. Now you are
telling me that there is no sound output. Go
ahead and take a legal action. I would be glad
to face it
Ok. I have just installed it at this time. I have a
recording of you telling me it was fully
functional, when we were getting it out of your
trunk. You also told me that the box wss not the
correct one. You can expect a summons then.
Thank you.
September 15th 2017, 7:43:50 pm
I would have given full refund which is $120. But this guy is threatening me for something which i didn't do.
Take a deep breath and give the guy his money back. Although OCD and irritating, he has been much more civil than many here re: cables and fuses. It is just not worth it.

Dave
Yes give him his money back. You don't need this hassle in your life. 
September 15th 2017, 7:41:14 pm 
Hey you bought the receiver on September 4th.
It has been more than 10 days. Now you are
telling me that there is no sound output. Go
ahead and take a legal action. I would be glad
to face it


It sounds as if you are looking forward to some legal action.

Beware Craigslist, many scams. One scam is to replace a non-working unit with a properly working unit.

Say I own a Abracadabra Model ABC123, and it has stopped working. Then I scan the ads looking for another Abracadabra Model ABC123.
When I find one, I buy it. Then try to con my old one off as a broken one, and get my money back. Now my unit is working again, and it didn't cost me anything.

I've never done this, but I have heard this story many times, usually from Craigslist. Seller Beware.
As others have suggested, give the money back and record the transaction. Chalk it off to lesson learned.

I have sold about 10 electronics on Craigslist and each time I’ve insisted on demoing the components. A bit of hassle to do all that but it’s well worth it. I keep this bad boy in my vehicle for demonstration,

"Fospower 150w 12V DC to 110V AC Portable Automobile Car Power Inverter with 2 USB Charging Ports"

Also do not invite strangers to your home, always pick a public place to conduct Craigslist transactions.

Good luck!

@jmcgrogan2 ~ good point. Thanks for sharing.

Post removed 
Post removed 
All due respect ...all this drama for a lousy $120.  Give the guy back his $.  Is not worth the hassle.

Rich
Thanks Guys. I took your advice and talked to him. I asked him to bring the receiver to me and I am going to give his money back. 
If you are refunding make sure he is returning the receiver you sold, not his broken one that is the same model.
In followup to jmcgrogan2's post, the situation of someone receiving working equipment but then claiming it was defective by swapping in another similar but nonworking item can easily be avoided.  Every sale should include a bill of sale to prove legitimate purchase.  The bill of sale should include the item's serial number or other identification.  If the transaction is face to face, as was the OP's, then the seller should bring a copy of the bill of sale and have the buyer sign it as a receipt to be kept by the seller.  If the transaction is by mail, the bill of sale can be included in the box.  In addition, the seller should take pictures of the item to show its physical condition in case of dispute about that, and one of the pictures should be of the serial number.
Post removed 
I don't have a bill of sale. Even it he brings his broken one, I am going to give his money back as Dave and Rich said  "It Is not worth the hassle." 
Sorry to hear of your bad experience. I have not used CL much for 'gear'..but mostly old furniture, vacuum cleaners, etc. 
But did sell 2 older but well working TVs with no hassles at all.

Funny thing about CL the safest deals usually involve the most money, cars & trucks. In most cases once they agree to buy the car, you can do title changes and money transfers inside your local bank in front of witnesses. 

You do have more protection selling on ebay. You can even click the square that says, "Local Delivery Accepted". That's where I sell most of my cheaper electronics. You do have to deal with fees, etc. but if you plan well can do well.  I've purchased some nice things too. Of course, Audiogon and US Audio Mart are other options with low overheads. 
Cash and carry. Good for you! this guy (tire kicker) needs to realize these things are sold as is no warranty and for $120 good luck finding a lawyer for less than a $1000 too take up his lost cause! You did the right thing collecting the money and not letting him pay with a CC or Paypal. He has no leg to stand on!  I would not loose any sleep over this "wanna try it and return it guy" Heck with that!
What really made me angry was he started with taking legal action. He could have just told the receiver is not working and I would have given his money back no question asked. 
A good lesson in why letting buyers come to your house in a bad idea. Imagine if he knew where you live?! One advisable idea with local sales is to allow the buyer to audition the component in his system, to insure it is operating to his satisfaction. After that, he is on his own.
...and then there's the idiots 'out there' that don't know how to operate audio gear that's more complex than a clock radio.  And even then, some clock radios' need the manual to make them work properly...

Case in point:  I've provided a 'shop stereo' with a receiver with a CD player, a parametric EQ, and a pair of 'line source' speaker arrays that can drown out the saws in the space.

Employ sez: "CD don't work."  Really?  OK, I'll check it out....

Later, walk up, switch on, punch ONE button on the EQ (which I've pointed out previously)....*foom* CD works....

Give the AH his $ back.  Find the manual (online?) and sell it again.  Some people can hurt themselves with a plastic butter knife and will sue the manufacturer of the knife for not providing a 'use manual'....

CYA is the order of the day. 
I gave him the original manual with remote and calibration mic. He was saying  that the receiver does not output steady
sound. I just hooked it up and no output. After a
while it has some sound output, not a little
white later there is again none and I am unable
to get anything out. I don't know what that means.
Looks like we need Judge Judy.

Actually, I think this transaction falls into the same scenario as buying a used car. Sold "as is" with no warranty, unless you told him you were providing a warranty. As long as you knew it was working properly, you can't be responsible for what he may have done, possibly causing damage.
I spoke with him or Saturday morning. I asked him to bring the receiver to my home so that we can check this out. If it’s not working,  I would be giving his money back. So far he has not contacted me.

Do you think I need to contact him now?
Sit tight.  Unless I miss my guess, no one is suing anybody for a $120.  
If anything, possibly small claims court.  

If you don't need the drama, give the buyer his money back and be done with it ... principal notwithstanding.  

It can't be worth it at this point.  

Rich 
Hi,
Dont be afraid of legal action, facing a judge might be anxiety provoking but the judge is human like all of us. If you have done nothing wrong and explain it to the judge, judge will understand. For $125, if he hires an attorney (first, I doubt any attorney will take the case), still the court will likely award the plaintiff only $125 because you had no malice. He will have to eat the legal cost. In my experience, case like yours will most likely be decided in your favor (unless you have given guarantees of some kind, esp. in writing). Most likely, you may not hear from him again, so, relax and sleep well.
Giri
I don't know your state but in a handful of states, including California, Michigan, and Nebraska, you must appear in small claims court on your own. (no lawyers allowed)  Recording your conversation is hearsay.  Hearsay evidence is normally excluded from a trial because it is deemed untrustworthy. 

If you think he is responsible for the damage don't invite him to your home and just ignore him.  If you feel, after talking to him that he is telling the truth you have the option to give him a refund.  
Good advice on all points regarding scammers and equipment swaps.

My view?  Depends on what your time is worth.

If you really need the $120, then let him fight you for it.  As the plaintiff, he bears the burden of proof, and your defense would be that after more than a week, there's no saying what he might have done to damage the unit.

If you don't mind standing on principle and have the time to respond to any court summons to address the matter, then let him roll the dice and take you to court.  Just keep in mind that if the judge decides in his favor, you may be hit with the additional filing fees which are probably about $150-ish.

First of all I am impressed with the number of upstanding and ethical people on this site who have said to just give him his money back! This is why I would never sell electronics on Craigslist although I'll bet nine out of ten transactions are fine! It's that tenth one that is not worth it! Personally if you are certain that the unit worked fine when you sold it I would tell him so and refuse any further correspondence! I have been to small claims court once on a matter of principle and it was a real hassle! (BTW I lost even though I was certain I was in the right!) As someone already suggested few people would do that for $120 unless they really felt that they had been scammed. I suspect he is either a scammer or he has hooked this unit up incorrectly somehow! I have heard of the scam where people buy a new unit identical to the one that is not working and then try to return their broken unit in its place! Do you happen to have a record of the serial number. Probably not but if so and if you really want to refund his money I would make it clear to him that you will do so only if he returns the unit you sold him!
the primary red flag on this deal is the guy immediately threatened you with legal action.   Over a $120 sale.   I would have to assume right from the start that something is amiss.     Either he lives under a rock and has no clue that situations such as these require tact in order to resolve with minimal stress.    Or ,  he is scamming you.  If you can not be sure that the unit he presents to you is not the one he sold you then tell him that and wish him luck.    Meet him in a public place to ascertain if it is the same unit.  There must be some identifying mark on it that you would remember?      This is of course a lot of hassle like many have said on here...but do you really want to give money back for a unit that is broke and not yours?     It is indeed the principle factor in play here.   You might want to just confront him with your suspicions and see how he responds.    Again,  what sets this all up as a scam is the guy making a threat on the initial contact of something wrong with the unit.    Maybe he is a bit of a doofus and knows squat about electronics  and thinks this is what he needs to do to get it resolved.   Poor communication skills if thats the case. 
meant to say if you can not be sure that the unit  he shows you is the one you sold him then I would walk on it.  
At this point, I would just him give him money back no matter what. But the problem is I spoke wit him last Saturday morning. I asked him to bring the receiver to me. He has not responded back so far. I am always carrying  $120 in my purse :)
Post removed 
I doubt he's coming back. At this point I would say he is "S.O.L."
Be careful about blowing off possible legal action,  an attorneys has been known to take advantage of an individual's lack of legal knowledge to create serious headaches and financial consequences.    http://www.indystar.com/story/news/2016/06/06/he-sold-40-printer-then-he-sued-indiana-30000/85219140...
That case is highly unusual and in the end, the lawsuit will probably be dismissed for a failure to prove damages. In this case, the buyer threatened legal action, he didn't take any legal action (yet) and probably never will. If the buyer does bring legal action, the OP can always run scared and cave in at that time. Personally if I knew the unit worked perfectly when I sold it, I wouldn't return the buyer his money.
I agree highly unlikely,  but it did happen and notice even if it is dismissed it still cost him over $12000.  My take away point is don't just blow thing off.
As many others have said, just give him his money back and be done with it. The threat of taking legal action is just silly, as he would spend far more money fighting you in court that what his reimbursement would be, so I wouldn't stress over it too much. Just make sure that if you receive a summons to appear in court or any other documents implying a lawsuit, don't make the mistake that the guy in the above story about the printer made and respond immediately so as to avoid being the victim of a professional scam artist like Gersh Zavodnik.
so what happened?

Couple things i have thought at time before a sale of a piece of equipment..

you can take pics of serial number and I do..but what if  they swap internal boards or something?  hard to prove then.

I sold a guy a preamp on here.  2 weeks later he says it dont work and he demanded refund.  I offered some solutions to see if it was actually my pre and he ignored me. paypal automatically took the money out of my account.  even though he said he shipped it back it took another 5 additional days for him to even get it shipped out. after that I got unit and it was not only working fine but it had been banged up and scared.  I Had before and after pics.  that did not matter.  even after I discovered he had done the same thing before and contacted the other guy I still was ignored. nobody cared and the guy gave me a negative on here to add insult to injury. 

but its probably a case of user error here.  I doubt the dude is going to take you to court over $120

since you havnt heard from him maybe he chickened out, scarred to be face to face when you show it works...lol..
Nothing happened. I am still waiting for his reply. It is month since i sold.