Can car company change lease agreement after signing and leasee takes possession of car?

Signed new 3 lease 6/1/09, took car home; contacted by car dealership later in evening-lease agreement needs to be reworked at a higher interest rate—(based on credit paperwork just pulled up by agent which should have been reviewed before signing but was not)–“conditionally approved”. 6/4/09 need to return car or sign new lease agrmt with monthly payments $40 higher. Dealer “went to bat” for me w/ corp. since loyal customer for 9 yrs. Price given much higher than last 3yr. lease for this cheaper car, they talked corp. down… The lease sgned 6/1 not binding?

Asked on June 4, 2009 under Business Law, New Jersey


J.V., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

In general when paperwork such as a lease is signed it becomes a binding contract. Failure to have investigated the credit prior to signing would be the fault of the dealer not the customer. However I do not know the terms of your lease and what you need to do is read the fine print.

If there is any language in there that leaves open the opportunity to review and change terms you will than have an issue with refusing to do so. However it is rare for this to occur and I would strongly urge you to first review the lease contract than consult a local attorney. If this is not set forth in the terms the attorney can present a solid case to the dealer and possibly get you the deal as originally agreed upon.

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