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  1. #1

    Default Can You Make a Car Dealership Return or Destroy Paperwork You Signed

    My question involves a consumer law issue in the State of: Montana

    I contacted a dealership about a car I saw on their lot. They said they had just got it in due to a trade in and didn't know anything about it. We test drove the car twice. They showed me the carfax and when I appeared alarmed at the entry that stated the car had been in an accident, they assured me the car was safe. There was an entry that the car was listed as a total loss 2 years later. They said that can happen simply by someone keying the car. They said that the fact that someone drove the car for another 10,000 miles shows it is safe.

    I had a mechanic look at the frame of the car. He said the frame was sound. He put it on a lift and showed me the underside of the car where it had been damaged. He didn't look further. He suggested I have them fix a different part. I went back to the dealership and told them what the mechanic said. They said they would lower the price of the vehicle and I was free to have the part fixed at my convenience. I signed paperwork to get a car for my daughter. I did not turn over a check for payment. I was supposed to do that the following day. On the way home, the power steering went out and gauges on the dashboard stopped working. I brought the car back. (I've been hesitant about the car the whole time due to the carfax - although they repeated stated the car was safe.) I told them I wanted to give the keys back, to get my paperwork back and forget the whole thing. I said it was basically an expensive test drive, but that I needed to be done. They have put nothing into the vehicle aside from the car wash before turning it over. They said they had no way of knowing the power steering and the gauges would go out on my way home. I left the keys there and said I didn't want the car. They tried to get me to look at a different car and use the other car as a trade-in. I said I didn't want another car and I haven't purchased this car yet. No money has exchanged hands.

    It's the next day and I'm thinking about the copy of my driver's license, the copy of the insurance card and the paperwork for the title. Am I going to get a bill for license plates for a car I don't own? Can they use information off my insurance car and submit false claims? I'm concerned about identity fraud. I read that all cars that transfer hands have to be able to pass a state inspection. Is that true.

    I tried to get the paperwork back again today and they told me no. They insist on me looking at another car. They claim they were upfront. I just want my personal information back so I can forget about this whole ordeal. They are out the price of a car wash and I'm out the $25 bucks for the tank of gas.

    Please give me some advice. Thank you so much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    7,941

    Default Re: Can You Make a Car Dealership Return or Destroy Paperwork You Signed

    Is this a large dealership or one of the small buy here, pay here type lots?

    Did you sign any kind of sales contract? If you did, you may be stuck with the car even if no money has changed hands.

    If they didn't know about the issue and your mechanic didn't spot it, what would you expect them to do?

    You don't really have any way to force them to return the paperwork or destroy it.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Can You Make a Car Dealership Return or Destroy Paperwork You Signed

    It's a large dealership. I signed a document called "Retail Order for a Motor Vehicle and Invoice" and a document that doesn't have a title, but lists a section for We Owe and a section for You Owe. Was it a good thing I didn't give them the check for payment? Isn't the transaction void because I didn't pay and brought the car back within an hour. I simply want the paperwork (mainly the copy of my driver's license and the request for title transfer) destroyed because of the personally identifiable information.

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