Auto Dealer Fraud: Frequently Asked Questions
Buying a car is an endeavor that takes grit and determination, not to mention lots of research to make sure you get the best deal possible. Not every dealer is involved in scams, and fraudulent undertakings, nevertheless it does pay to be aware of the risks.
What is Auto Dealer Fraud?
Auto dealer fraud is the deceptive and illegal tricks practiced by car dealers at any stage of the buying process. It can happen in advertising, negotiations, pricing and the funding terms. Bait and switch is one example of an advertising scam, inflation of vehicle price, and hiding important vehicle history.
What is Bait and Switch scam?
False advertising that presents one vehicle at one price, and then is no longer available when the customer arrives at the dealership is an example of bait and switch. The dealer may also try to sell the vehicle at a higher price than listed.
What information must be disclosed by a dealer?
When purchasing a used car the dealer has to disclose if the car has been salvaged, (after an accident for example), has been rebuilt, or has had flood damage.
What does mileage rollback mean?
There are occasions when the odometer has been tampered with or “rolled back” indicating fewer miles than the vehicle actually has.
Is there a difference in Lemon Law and dealer fraud cases?
Dealer fraud is very different from a Lemon Law case, even though both involve vehicles. A lemon law concerns a problem or defect that occurs within the car itself from the manufacturer while dealer fraud is the result of dishonest tricks by an auto dealer.
Should I contact the dealer if I feel I have been the victim of fraud?
In many states, it is required that a consumer report the fraud to the dealership before any claims can be made against the dealer. This should be in writing explaining what the problem is and how you would like it to be resolved. This may include a partial refund, or in a case of mechanical issues be repaired.
Can I file a lawsuit for auto dealer fraud?
If you suspect you have been the victim of a car dealer fraud contact a dealer fraud attorney Hovanes Margarian at (818) 553-1000. An attorney is the best person to advise you of your rights. He will investigate your claims and advise for or against starting a lawsuit.