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What are my rights as a car buyer?

On Behalf of | Jun 5, 2020 | Auto Dealership Law |

California is known as a state that stands up for consumer rights, and when it comes to buying a vehicle, the state provides you with an assurance that any deal will be fair.

The State of California Department of Motor Vehicles explains you have specific rights pertaining to itemized price lists and credit checks as part of the process.

Itemized price list

The law requires a dealer to provide you with an itemized price list for any of the following:

  • Warranties
  • Service contracts
  • Insurance
  • Contract cancellation

In the case of contract cancellation, this is an option that requires an additional, nonrefundable fee. It ensures that you have the right to cancel the contract and return the vehicle within two days after purchase. The agreement also constitutes that you must keep the vehicle is the same condition as it was when you bought it, must not exceed agreed upon mileage and return it without liens. You must also provide the original receipts. The dealer will give you a full refund, including sales tax, registration fees, deposit or trade-in vehicle. If the dealer refuses the return, it must give you written notice.

For all the items, the price list must provide you with the monthly payment costs with and without the additional items or coverages.

Your credit score

The dealer must give you your credit score, along with the following information:

  • Statements about how it gathered the information and used it
  • How scores fluctuate
  • Range of possible scores
  • Date of the dealer obtained the score
  • Name of the credit agency

The dealer must also inform you that you have the right to get a copy of the credit report it used in determining your creditworthiness.



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