On 6/18/07, I went to Bay Ridge Mazda in Brooklyn to buy a new car. The dealer made me fill out and sign a "bill of sale" which indicated the selling price of the car, my down payment ($2500), and authorized the dealer to run my credit score for financing purposes. He then swiped my credit card and charged me $2500 for my deposit/down payment. This bill of sale was not a final sales contract in which all the financing terms were laid out.
In the end, we disagreed on the final price of the car and the deal was cancelled. I received a receipt of the $2500 down payment charge against my account, but NEVER received a receipt of that money getting refunded and credited back to my account due to the cancelled sale. Instead, the dealer insisted that I was not entitled to a signed copy of the bill of sale, so he gave me a copy of the following handwritten note, "Customer's $2500 will be refunded to her account by 6/19/07 (Signed, [dealer's name])." I then left the store and checked my credit card account online the next day to see if my $2500 was refunded. Sure enough, it was not. That day (6/19), I called the dealer to complain, and they assured me that it would be done in 20 mins. I checked my acct the next day and again, the money was not yet refunded. I then called the dealer (6/21) and threatened to file a complaint in small claims court. He was very defensive and told me that he would refund the money on Friday (6/22). I do not believe him at all. It is now 6/28/07 and my money has not yet been refunded, even though I have a signed copy in his handwriting that he'd refund it by 6/19/07.
I've called the credit card company and they've temporarily refunded my account with the $2500 subject to me proving that the dealer deceptively and/or fraudulently retained my deposit without my consent. However, I am worried that this handwritten note is all the evidence I have against him.
Do I have any legal recourse against the dealer? I am hoping NY Consumer Protection laws will protect me. I am tempted to file a police report and/or speak with a district attorney. Please HELP me get my money back from this lowlife car dealer! Thanks!