When you go to a dealership to look at vehicles, all of them will generally fall into one of two categories. They will be vehicles sold as-is by the dealership and others that have the protection of a warranty either from the manufacturer or the dealership itself.
As a general rule, those with tight budgets, those looking to buy a first car for a teen driver and those with mediocre credit may find that as-is vehicle purchases are a better option for their current circumstances than a more expensive vehicle with a warranty.
An as-is vehicle could have defects that are expensive to repair or other risks for the buyer. However, just because the dealer doesn’t provide a warranty doesn’t mean that they can misrepresent the vehicle or its condition.
Lying to convince someone to make a purchase is fraud
Some salespeople will stretch the truth and others will outright lie in order to close a sale. Consumers often feel like they don’t have any options or rights, especially in a situation involving an as-is purchase. Buyers of used cars need to be proactive to protect themselves and understand the condition of the vehicle they buy.
However, if you were promised that the vehicle was in a certain condition or if the salesperson stated that the dealership had done maintenance or repairs that they did not, the person who purchased the vehicle may have the option of holding the salesperson or dealership responsible for their fraudulent statements.
Ideally, those claiming fraud at a dealership will have written proof of questionable claims or perhaps even video or audio recordings of their interaction. Even if it is your word against the salesperson involved, you could still potentially bring a claim if you made a bad purchase because of fraudulent statements or promises.
Consumers should be able to trust in the companies they patronize
Maybe you went to a specific dealership because they advertise having the most competitive prices or perhaps you had good experiences there in the past. Doing your due diligence regarding the make and model of the vehicle and taking it for a test drive to ensure it is in decent operating condition is a stressful enough process without needing to constantly worry about whether the professional facilitating the sale has lied to you.
When salespeople make fraudulent claims to consumers, they earn a commission while potentially causing financial hardship for the purchaser. Standing up for yourself not only helps to mitigate the impact of a bad purchase but also possibly creates penalties for those intentionally deceiving consumers.