You seem to have a "know it all" on your hands. Such is the nature of Craigslist; it's a great resource, but this is what happens when everyone has free access.
Whether emissions compliance is a requirement for used vehicle sales is entirely dependent upon the laws of the state (or commonwealth) where the transaction is to take place (as determined by where the buyer will be registering the vehicle).
In Massachusetts, the law is clear and available in Section 7N of the Registry of Motor Vehicles Regulations. You can view them yourself on the RMV web site at:
Selling a vehicle that's passed safety or emissions is NOT "illegal". However, it does provide the buyer with the option of rescinding the purchase within 14 days if the vehicle fails inspection for reasons not caused while in the buyer's possession. Even so, there is the opportunity for you to agree to certain terms regarding the failed emissions testing provided they're written into the bill of sale. Whether or not this means you can specify the buyer agrees to assume the specific costs rather than the seller is a question best-asked of the RMV itself to make sure you don't find yourself having to unexpectedly unwind a sale.
From the RMV web site:
"In order to void a motor vehicle sale under this section the buyer shall, within fourteen days from the date of sale, notify the seller of his intention to do so, deliver the motor vehicle to the seller, provide the seller with a written statement signed by an authorized agent of such inspection station stating the reasons why the motor vehicle failed to pass the safety or combined safety and emissions inspection and an estimate of the cost of necessary repairs. The buyer shall be entitled to a refund of his purchase price unless the buyer and seller agree in writing that the seller may make the necessary repairs at his own cost and expense within a reasonable period of time thereafter. This section shall apply only to motor vehicles purchased for the immediate personal or family use of the buyer."
So, it's not necessarily "illegal" to sell the vehicle; but it may render the sale invalid if you fail to make certain agreements and disclosures with the buyer in advance. If you're unable to come to terms with a buyer, and the vehicle isn't worth very much to begin with; you may be better-off donating the vehicle for the charitable tax deduction or just selling it for salvage.
Best of luck. I hope this helps.
· 10 years ago