Buying a Vehicle Without Getting Ripped OffWhether you're looking to buy a new orused vehicle, it's in your best interest to keep a watchful eye during the transaction and delivery. Just think about such frauds as modified odometers or vehicles damaged by the elements (hail, for instance) that are repaired and then sold as "brand new"...
Granted, fraud can go the other way around. For example, how many people have tried to submit false claims to their insurance companies? Frauds in the auto industry prove very costly for consumers.
Finally, there are situations in which a third party commits a fraud by stealing some of your personal information and even your own identity. Some will use your driver's license to pull off some kind of theft.
Beware of unscrupulous sellers
How can you know if the car you just bought has not been used by someone else or damaged by hail or vandals in the dealer's lot? An unscrupulous salesperson might be tempted to keep silent about it. After all, the car still looks brand new. If you want answers, ask questions. If the dealer tries to sell you a demo car or a damaged vehicle that was fully restored, it's up to you to take the risk. But don't be a fool! Ask for compensations or a substantial rebate.
Private sellers could also keep quiet on damage or mechanical issues that the vehicle they're selling might have, so getting it inspected with a written evaluation is always a good idea. If the seller refuses to let you have the car checked out by a mechanic, he or she may have something to hide.
Did you spot a car that's so inexpensive that it seems like a steal? If you contact a seller for extra information, and that person asks you for a cash advance before you even see the car or test drive it, you might be dealing with an unscrupulous seller who's trying to fraud you. If the price seems too good to be true, use extra caution.
The used vehicle market, a jungle?
Before you buy a used vehicle, we recommend that you follow these few tips to avoid getting ripped off:
Obligations of the dealer
When you buy a pre-owned vehicle, make sure you have all the information necessary to make an educated decision. In Quebec, for instance, the L'Office de la protection du consommateur requires all car dealers to include the following information on the label of vehicles on sale:
Suffered an accident? Call your insurer!
This part concerns the consumer. True, consumers have rights, but with those rights come obligations. Should you suffer an accident and damage your car and/or injure yourself, it's your obligation to contact your insurer. Also, you should read your insurance policy to know exactly what will be covered.
When fraud comes from a third party
To avoid frauds associated with your driver's license, the following recommendations will help you:
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