Almost everyday I receive a phone call from a person who has an issue with an Oregon used car dealer. The specific issues vary from person to person, but they all involve a car dealer that the person believes ripped them off. Many callers have just discovered they were ripped off and do not know how to go about getting their money back. When I speak with people I usually will explain the following steps that I would like to see before litigating their case. I say usually because every case is different, so you should contact an Oregon Attorney at 503.224.1658 to discuss your matter.
- Figure out what you want, and why you think you need an Attorney. (i.e. Do you want to unwind the deal? Do you want to keep the car and have the dealer repair the car? Do you want to keep the car and have the dealer pay for repairs? etc.) Once you figure out what you want then you can figure out how to get it.
- If you suspect you were sold a car with a “material defect” the dealer should have known about it, you should have evidence of the material defect. Simply saying the car runs funny, or pulls to the left, does not convince me there is a “material defect.” I usually ask people to take their car to a reputable mechanic and get the mechanic to write down any material defects and whether or not the defects render the car unsafe to drive. Photographs are also very helpful. It is also important to remember that the mechanic may have to come to court to testify on your behalf, so find a mechanic that is friendly, knowledgeable, and willing to help.
- If you suspect you were ripped off by an on-line advertisement, you should immediately take a screen shot of the advertisement. Dealers will often times remove these from their web-site shortly after the sale. It is tough to make a claim for false advertising (UTPA violations) if you do not have any evidence of the false advertisement. Ensure to store the electronic information in a safe accessible file.
- Save all communications with the dealers. Most people have smart phones and there is an app for everything now days. You should save all voicemails, text messages, and missed call logs showing dealer contacts. You should export that information to somewhere to preserve it in case your cell phone is damaged or lost.
- Communicate with the dealer in writing. Always communicate with the dealer in writing to memorialize any conversation that occurred. The dealer may lie in the future regarding what transpired during the sale and after the sale. If you had written communications that were either faxed, text ed, emailed, or mailed to the dealer then the dealer cannot deny the communication occurred. This is very important if you ask for your money back. You should have proof that you informed the dealer of the material defect and that you want your money back.
The list above is just the tip of the ice burg. Each case is different and the information required by each case varies from case to case. However, before you think you are ready to contact an Attorney to litigate your matter the above steps should be acknowledged and addressed. Please remember that this post is for information only and your situation may vary. It is important you contact an Oregon Attorney. Jeremiah Ross fights for consumers that have been ripped off by used car dealers. Please call Ross Law LLC at 503.224.1658. This post does not create an attorney client relationship.