When buying a vehicle in Pennsylvania or any other state, it is important to verify that the figure on the odometer is correct. This is because some may engage in a process called clocking, which means that they fraudulently lower the number on the odometer. Individuals may be able to do a VIN check to determine if their desired vehicle has been tampered with.
Carfax and a variety of other companies offer this service for a fee of up to $39. Those who are looking to sell a vehicle should know that intentionally tampering with an odometer is a federal offense. Sellers are legally required to tell a buyer if the number on the odometer is not correct. Individuals who are victims of fraud or believe that they have been taken advantage of can contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or watchdog groups in their state.
Prior to buying a vehicle, it may be a good idea to have it inspected by a mechanic as well as ask for a used car history report. These may be available for a fee online or provided at no charge by a dealer. In addition to providing information about how many miles the vehicle has, it may also be possible to learn if a car has been in a crash or experienced other significant damage.
Individuals who have been lied to or misled by a private seller or dealer may want to contact an attorney. This may make it possible to take action such as negotiating an informal settlement or taking the matter to court. If a used car fraud claim is successful, an individual may be entitled to compensation for the cost of the car and other damages related to another party's negligence.