The Buyers Guide
Under federal law, used car dealerships are required to post a disclosure document, also known as a Buyers Guide, that gives consumers information about their purchase and any warranties on all vehicles being offered for sale. Used car dealers who fail to post these disclosures, or who alter them in such a way that they don’t comply with federal standards, can be held accountable by consumers, so if you recently purchased a used vehicle that did not come with a Buyers Guide, or that came with a Buyers Guide that did not contain the required information, you should consider speaking with an experienced used car fraud attorney who can help you seek compensation for your losses.
Buyers Guide Requirements
Disclosure documents provided by used car dealers must contain certain information, including:
- The vehicle’s make, model, model year, and VIN;
- The name and address of the dealership;
- The name and telephone number of the person that can be contacted with complaints;
- Information about any warranties, including whether they are full or limited, the percentage of costs that they cover, and which systems are covered and for how long;
- Information about any service contracts offered by the dealer; and
- An optional signature line followed by a disclosure acknowledging that the buyer received the Buyers Guide at the close of the sale.
In Pennsylvania, used car dealers are not permitted to exclude the implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a vehicle being offered for sale. The only exception to this rule is when they include a notice on the Buyers Guide explaining that the car in question is being sold without a warranty, which means that the buyer will bear any expenses related to repairing or correcting defects in the vehicle. When making this statement, dealers are also barred from using the term “as is” unless the sales contract also explains that the vehicle is being sold without any warranties.
Where is the Buyers Guide Located?
Buyers Guides must be displayed on all vehicles being offered for sale in a prominent and conspicuous place where both sides are visible. Often, these disclosure documents can be found hanging on the rear view mirror inside of a car, on a side view mirror, attached to a side window, or under a windshield wiper. Guides that are stored in glove compartments, under seats, or in trunks do not satisfy this requirement because they are not in plain sight. Furthermore, these notices can only be removed for the purpose of a test drive, after which they must be immediately replaced.
Buyers must also be given a copy of the vehicle’s Buyers Guide at the time of sale that reflects any changes to the contract. Finally, when a sale is conducted in Spanish, dealerships must provide Spanish language Buyers Guide to customers.
Call a Dedicated Philadelphia Used Car Fraud Attorney
If you were not given a Buyers Guide before purchasing your vehicle, or were given a copy that contained false or misleading information, please contact experienced Philadelphia used car fraud lawyer Louis S. Schwartz at CONSUMERLAWPA.com today to learn more about your legal options.