What to do about illegal practices by a car dealership?

I recently purchased a used car from a dealership. When I test drove the car I noted the odometer reading and told them there were a few issues with the car. They told me the problems would be fixed. I went down and signed the paperwork including an odometer reading paper with the odometer reading around 128,000. I got the run around for about 4 weeks as far as finally picking it up. I got it on Tuesday but none of the problems are fixed and my odometer now reads about 22,000 miles under what it did what it said when I test drove it and what all my paperwork says. Isnt this illegal? And a scam? Isthere anything I can do?

Asked on November 23, 2012 under General Practice, Massachusetts


MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

This is highly illegal and there are federal laws regarding Odometer tampering and declarations signed by previous owners of vehicles when transferring the vehicles and dealerships re-selling the same vehicles. You need to report this dealership to the Department of Motor Vehicles in your state and to the State Attorney General. Include your odometer reading when you test drove. Indicate you want your money back immediately. If this fails, you may need to sue the dealership to void the contract. You can send a certified letter to the dealership (I would not do this without an attorney) indicating that you consider this transaction void and expect a full refund within 24 hours.

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