Consumer Protection

Ross Law wishes the Marine Corps a Happy 241st Birthday!

On November 10, 1775 the United States Marine Corps was born.  Marines have been fighting on behalf of others every day since.  Every November 10 United States Marines around the world take time to celebrate the Marine Corps and reflect on their service.  

I was fortunate to serve in the Marine Corps decades ago.  Each year on November 10, I take time out of my day to briefly reflect on my service in the Marine Corps. This is a time of the year to catch up with old Marine friends and reflect on the skills and knowledge I obtained in the Marine Corps.  I didn't have a desk job in the Marine Corps.  I was a basic infantryman, so I didn't learn any office skills or other skills you would think may help a lawyer.  

When the Continental Congress stood up two battalions of Marines in 1775, a culture of
discipline, vigilance, professionalism, and military excellence was born that has characterized
our Corps for nearly two and a half centuries. As Marines, we have a profound respect for our
traditions and heritage, and for taking care of each other.
— Robert B. Neller General, U.S. Marine Corps Commandant of the Marine Corps

However, I regularly draw from the skills and knowledge I obtained as a Marine to represent people injured by the negligence of others, crime victims, and consumers.  The Marine Corps taught me to adapt and overcome all odds.  I was constantly pushed to do more with less. Marines are not intimidated, even when the odds are heavily stacked against them.  Marines never quit.  Marines are expected to figure out a solution despite what many people perceive is an "impossible task." 


These lessons I learned in the Marine Corps are invaluable today.  As a plaintiff's personal injury lawyer, I am always out-gunned and out-numbered by  insurance companies and their high priced lawyers.   I don't have the hundreds of millions of dollars that an Insurance company has to finance a case, so I am constantly tasked with doing more with less and getting results.  I thrive on the fact that I am regularly an under-dog.  A fancy office building or a grumpy old lawyer that barks at me does little to assist their client. I am not intimidated by the prospect of a Jury trial, and have the discipline and drive to  continue litigating even when the case becomes difficult.   All of these lessons cannot be taught in law-school, in a seminar, or by working on the top-floor of a high rise Portland office building.  They were all learned while serving alongside my fellow Marines. 

If you served in the Marine Corps, then Happy Birthday. If you know a Marine then wish them a Happy Birthday.  It means a lot.  If you served in the Marine Corps or another branch of the military and have a legal issue then call me at 503.224.1658 for your free brief phone consultation. If I don't practice in an area I will do my best to find you someone that does.  


Can an Oregon Dealer Sell a Vehicle with the "Service Engine Soon" light illuminated?

 I frequently receive calls from people asking about whether or not an Oregon car dealer can lawfully sell a vehicle that has a "Service Engine Soon" light illuminated.    As with many legal issues there is not a clear cut answer to this question.   Typically it is unlawful for a vehicle dealer to sell a vehicle that has the service engine soon light illuminated to a person that will be registering the vehicle in the Portland or Medford Metro Region.  In other words, in most cases if a dealer sells a vehicle to a person living in certain places then the vehicle cannot have a service engine soon light illuminated.   If the purchased vehicle has a service engine soon light illuminated then it is most likely a violation of the Unlawful Trade Practices Act if the vehicle will be registered in the Portland or Medford Metro Region. (ORS 646.608 (1)(u) via Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) 137-020-0020 (3) (o) see Commentary)

Image from Oregon DEQ Website


Here is a breakdown of the law:

The Law:  OAR 137-020-0020 (3) (o)'s Official Commentary states: "When a dealer sells a vehicle to an individual that is registering the vehicle in a metro area that requires that the vehicle pass DEQ emissions testing to be roadworthy, the dealer must ensure that the vehicle can pass the DEQ emissions test at the time of sale."

The DEQ Inspection:   The Oregon DEQ operates a Vehicle Inspection Program in the Portland and Rogue Valley areas of Oregon. In these areas, an emissions test is required when registering or renewing a vehicle with Oregon DMV. (ORS 803.350 (4)) The DEQ notes vehicles are the number one source of air pollution in Oregon. Emissions can lead to high smog levels and contain air toxics, carbon monoxide and greenhouse gasses, which can have a variety of effects on Oregonians. The DEQ claims the vehicle Inspection Program is a successful, cost-effective way to reduce air pollution and maintain good air quality.    

The Service Engine Soon Light:  The "Service Engine Soon" light or "Check Engine Soon Light" are lights that are intended to alert drivers there is a problem with the vehicle's On Board Diagnostics (OBD). Sometimes the warning light is simply an illuminated engine symbol. These lights often illuminate when there is an issue with a key engine component or the emissions system.   That is why they are called Malfunction Indicator Lights (MIL). If MIL lights blink or flash then it may indicate a serious engine malfunction.  Some of these issues are quick fixes, but many times they are not.    When there is a problem then the vehicle will issue a "Diagnostic Trouble Code" (DCT) and store it in the vehicle's computer memory.  This code aids a qualified service technician in diagnosing and repairing the problem.  

The DEQ Inspection and The Service Engine Soon Light:  The DEQ will not issue a certificate to a vehicle that has a Malfunction Indicator Light (MIL) illuminated. This is due to the fact the DEQ tests the vehicle's On Board Diagnostics (OBD) on vehicles that are 1996 or newer.  The OBD is a Computer that tracks if the vehicle has any issues. The OBD monitors misfires, the fuel system, certain engine components, the catalytic converter, the oxygen sensor and heater, and EGR valves.  The OBD will trigger the MIL if any of these systems have a problem.   As a result, the vehicle cannot pass DEQ if the MIL is illuminated because the MIL indicates there is a problem with the vehicle's key components or emissions systems.  Therefore, a vehicle with a MIL light illuminated is not "roadworthy" as mandated by (OAR) 137-020-0020 (3) (o).    

Where are the Metro Regions requiring a DEQ Emissions Test:  The DEQ has specific boundaries for the Metro Regions requiring testing.  The Metro Regions requiring DEQ inspections are areas surrounding Portland and Medford (aka Rogue Valley Area).  If you live inside those boundaries and will be registering your newly purchased vehicle then your vehicle must pass a DEQ inspection in order to be "roadworthy."  

Click on the Image To See If You Are In A Metro Region requiring a DEQ Inspection 

Not All Vehicles Need to Pass DEQ In Order to Be Registered:  Some vehicles do not need to pass the DEQ inspection due to the vehicle's age, type, or where the vehicle will be registered. For more information see DEQ Web-Site or OAR 340-256-0300.

What if The Service Engine Soon Light Illuminates Shortly After Purchase:  A service engine soon light that illuminates shortly after purchase is often indicative of a recent "reset" of the OBD.   Sometimes a vehicle's OBD can be reset by simply removing the battery.   Also   "diagnostic trouble codes" can be reset.  If that is done the MIL will often be turned off once the battery is reconnected.  The vehicle then needs to drive through a driving cycle to determine if there is a problem.  Sometimes this may take a few miles, other times it may take a week or so.  The vehicle's OBD will indicate it is "not ready" if the vehicle is re-diagnosing any issues and is in a drive cycle.  If the vehicle's OBD indicates "not ready" at the DEQ then this is a good indication the vehicle's OBD has been reset recently and prior to the sale. This may be a violation of ORS 646.608 (1), OAR 137-020-0020 (3),  ORS 815.305, and other state and federal regulations.   

The Law Prohibits Disconnecting or Altering Pollution Control Equipment:   If a person disconnects the battery in an effort to reset the OBD then they may be breaking the law.   It is against the law for a person to disconnect or permit someone to disconnect vehicle air pollution devices.  It is also against the law for a person to modify or alter factory installed pollution control systems in a manner that reduces its efficiency or effectiveness.  There are some exemptions to this law.  (See ORS 815.305 for details)

There are many issues that can arise if a vehicle is sold with a service engine soon light illuminated.  Sometimes it is not illegal for a dealer to sell a vehicle with a MIL illuminated, while other times it is.  It is best to consult with a lawyer at 503.224.1658 if you think you were sold a vehicle unlawfully.  At Ross Law LLC we regularly represent consumers that have issues with vehicles being sold with service engine soon lights illuminated.  Also, please remember this post is not considered legal advice, call a lawyer for legal advice.  Furthermore, the law is constantly changing, so please do not rely solely on this post.  Rely on the text of the actual laws, regulations, and rules that apply to your situation.  


If you have a square space account like myself then you may be subject to an arbitration agreement and you may have waived your right to participate in a class action if things go bad.   This is due to the fact that Square Space's Terms of Service include an extensive Arbitration Clause and a Class Action Waiver.  

Why is Arbitration Terrible for Consumers:  Arbitration is terrible for consumers because it is expensive, the rules of evidence usually favor the business, and the arbitrators know that if they rule in the consumer's favor then the business (squarespace) may not choose them as an arbitrator again.  The consumer usually only has one case to arbitrate where squarespace may have hundreds or thousands of cases.   In my experience, arbitrators will throw the business a bone on cases that are good for consumers.  Sometimes it may be a reduced award (amount of money the consumer receives) other times the arbitrator will cut the award of the consumer's attorney fees.    The big issue with arbitration can be cost.  Many people cannot afford to pay the arbitrator's fees that can be thousands and thousands of dollars.  SquareSpace chose to use "Jams"  and this means that the consumer must pay $1500.00 to open their case with Jams plus the arbitrator must be paid an hourly rate.  That is why you should OPT OUT OF ARBITRATION AND THE CLASS ACTION WAIVER.

How Do You Opt Out of the SquareSpace Arbitration Agreement?  It is easy and takes two minutes at most.  Here is what Squrespace requires as of September 27, 2016 (this may change in the future):

6.3. Arbitration Opt-Out. You can decline this agreement to arbitrate by emailing us within thirty (30) days of the date that you first agree to this Agreement (“Opt-Out Period”). Your email must be sent from the email address you use for your Account, and must include your full name, residential address and a clear statement that you want to opt out of arbitration. If you opt out of arbitration pursuant to this Section 16.3, then Sections 16.2, 16.4, 16.5 and 16.6 of these Terms do not apply to you. This opt-out doesn’t affect any other sections of the Terms, including without limitation Sections 16.8 (Judicial Forum For Disputes; Time For Filing), 16.9 (No Class Actions) and 17.2 (Controlling Law). If you have any questions about this process, please contact


That is it.  If you have any questions about arbitration agreements feel free to call me at 503.224.1658.  Ross Law is always happy to assist consumers that may have been ripped off.   Please remember this post is not to be considered legal advice and may be considered ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.  ALSO, PLEASE RELY ON SQUARESPACE'S TERMS AND CONDITIONS, as this post may be outdated.   

Ten Things You Should Know About Attorney Fees In Oregon:

As a Portland Oregon attorney, people often call me to ask how much it will cost for my firm to represent them.  This is a pretty good question and I am surprised that everyone doesn't ask it right away.  This is because attorney fees and costs in Oregon can vary dramatically from lawyer to lawyer.  Some large firms charge substantial hourly rates, while other firms can charge half that to perform the same task.  Legal Consumers should educate themselves before meeting with an attorney.   The list below should provide you with helpful information to educate yourself before hiring an attorney:

1:What Is The Difference Between a "Fixed Fee," "Hourly Fees", and a "Contingency Fee?"  

Fixed fees are fees that are paid to the lawyer to perform a specific task to represent you for a certain amount of time.  Many criminal lawyers charge a fixed fee.   For example, a lawyer that charges $1,500.00 to take DUII case up to trial would be charging a Fixed Fee.  The lawyer then may charge an additional fixed trial fee to represent the DUII client in the trial.  These fees are "earned upon receipt" and you would pay $1,500.00 for the lawyer to represent you and nothing more.   

An Hourly Rate is very common.  Many lawyers that represent business clients or persons with family law matters will often charge an hourly fee.  For example, the lawyer may spend three hours drafting a letter for you and charges $200.00 an hour.  You would pay the lawyer $600.00 for the service.  Most hourly rate attorneys will require a retainer.

A Contingency Fee is very common in Personal Injury cases.  With a contingency fee, the lawyer will not receive a payment unless the client collects money from the other side.    I represent people on a contingency fee in Personal  Injury cases and Crime Victim cases.   I also typically represent people who get ripped off by car dealers on a contingency basis.   Usually the attorney will get a percentage of the amount received by the other side. For example, if you received $100,000.00 from the other side before we filed a lawsuit I might receive a fee of 33% ($33,000.00) out of that $100,000.  I have a different model with the auto fraud cases.  

2:  Why is The Contingency Fee In Oregon Usually 33%?  There is not a specific reason for this.  However, the attorney is engaging in a risky en-devour.  The attorney in a contingency case is fronting their time and usually their money with the hopes they win and collect from the other side.  If the attorney loses your case the attorney will lose all the time and effort they put into the case.  The attorney or their law firm may also lose the thousands of dollars in costs that were paid on your behalf.  Also, the fee percentage may increase, because the risk of losing the case may increase.  

3:  What are "Costs" and Who Pays Them?  Costs are in addition to the attorney fee.   Costs are amounts that are paid to others to prosecute your case.  For example, if the attorney has to take depositions and have the depositions transcribed someone must pay the court reporter to do this.   Many attorneys have their clients pay costs, and demand a "retainer" (see below) to draw from.  In Personal Injury cases and Crime Victim cases my firm usually will front costs.  What this means is that I hope we win and then my firm will be reimbursed the costs out of any settlement or award.   In other words, the client does not have to pay anything for representation until after the trial in a personal injury or crime victim case unless we win.

4:  What is a Retainer?  A retainer is a lump sum the lawyer requires to draw funds out of.  Think of it as setting up a bank account with the lawyer.  Most hourly lawyers want a retainer, and some contingent fee attorneys want a retainer to pay costs.   They will bill a certain amount of hours and then send you an accounting at the end of the month.   For example, an attorney is representing you in a business dispute.  The attorney requests a $3,500.00 retainer.  The attorney charges $300.00 an hour and spent 10 hours on the case.  The attorney will be paid $3,000.00 out of the retainer.   The attorney also paid the court $500.00 to file the lawsuit.  As a result, the $3,500.00 retainer is gone.  Most likely the attorney will ask you to replenish the retainer and deposit another $3,500.00.  

5:  What Percentage Do Oregon Attorneys Typically Charge for a Contingency Fee?   Typically in personal injury cases and crime victim cases attorneys will charge 33% of the amount recovered.  However, most attorneys will increase the percentage charged as the case progresses.  For example, the attorney may charge 33% of any amount recovered before a lawsuit is filed.  The fee might jump up to 40% after a lawsuit is filed.  This is due to the fact a lot more work needs to be done after a lawsuit is filed.   

6:  I Don't Have Money To Pay An Attorney, Can I Still Get an Oregon Attorney?  That is a difficult question to answer, because it depends on the type of case you have.   If you have a personal injury case or a crime victim, then you probably can get an attorney even if you can't afford it.  This is because those cases are taken on a contingency.  Also, in Oregon a criminal defendant that does not have money for a lawyer may have the Judge appoint a lawyer for them.  However, if you have a family law case then you may not be able to obtain free representation.   Some organizations provide representation to people that cannot afford a lawyer.  Call me  at 503.224.1658 if you have an Oregon personal injury case, or you are a crime victim, or have an auto dealership fraud case. If you have another type of case you may want to call the Oregon State Bar Lawyer Referral Service at 800-452-7636. 

7: Do Attorneys Negotiate Attorney Fees? Some people try and negotiate the attorney fee with the attorney.  For example, they may want an attorney to represent them in a personal injury case, but will not agree to pay a contingency of more than 25% of the amount recovered.  Most attorneys do not typically negotiate their attorney fee, but there are always exceptions.  

8:  How Will I Know if the Attorney is Charging a Contingency Fee?  The attorney must disclose what type of fee they are charging in a written fee agreement in Oregon.  In fact there is a law regarding what an attorney must do when entering in a contingency fee agreement.  (See ORS 20.340)  You should read the agreement carefully, it should be easy to read, the attorney should also explain it,  and you should ask questions.  

9:  Can I Back Out of An Attorney Fee Agreement After I Signed It?  Typically yes.  In fact, if you signed a personal injury contingency fee agreement you have the legal right to rescind the agreement within 24 hours after signing it. (see ORS 20.340) If you back out of a personal injury contingency fee it is important to remember to notify the lawyer in writing.  However, in other cases the attorney may still charge you for any work performed even if you back out.

10:  Will I Recover My Attorney Fees If I Win?  It depends.  Typically in Oregon the loser will have to reimburse you for your allowable costs.  However, unless their is a right to collect attorney fees under a law, a contract, or some other agreement you  will  usually not be able to recover your attorney fees from the other side.  Call me at 503.224.1658 to discuss what types of cases typically allow for recovery of attorney fees.   

 If you or someone you know has needs an Oregon Lawyer please contact attorney Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658.  If Ross Law cannot assist you they will do their best to finds someone that can assist you or try and point you in the right direction.  

Please Read This Disclaimer!  Please remember that this information is not to be considered "legal advice" and you should always check with an attorney or the Oregon State Bar regarding the issues brought up in this post.  The law is always changing, so some things in this post may be out-dated.  Also, this post is intended for people who are seeking Oregon Attorneys.  Lastly this post,, and this blog may be considered ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.  

Jeremiah Ross selected as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer

The National Trial Lawyers selected Jeremiah Ross as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer.   The organization recognized Jeremiah Ross for his work as a Personal Injury Attorney and Consumer Lawyer.  You can read more about The National Trial Lawyers at The National Trial Lawyers web-site.

The National Trial Lawyers


 Jeremiah Ross represents Oregonians in Personal Injury cases, Crime Victims, and Oregonians consumer cases.   Feel free to call Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658 to discuss your case. 

Oregon Consumers Beware-Flooded Cars from Louisiana May Flood Into Oregon

Louisiana has recently suffered some of the worst flooding in the Nation's history.   At least 60,000 homes have been damaged and it is estimated at least 13 people died as a result of the flooding.  These are staggering numbers, and the destruction is anticipated to take months or years to clean up.  

It is difficult for us in Oregon to imagine how this flood could possibly affect us.  However, car buyer's need to beware because the numerous Louisiana cars that were flooded may be heading to Oregon.  These cars usually suffer from numerous electrical issues, power-train issues, and can often be plagued with mildew problems.  These issues can create a dangerous situation when the vehicle loses power and this can result in the injury or death to the driver and others on the road.

It is unknown how many flooded cars may be entering the markets, but there could be tens of thousands of vehicles flooding into the used car markets. Dealers can buy these cars at a reduced price, clean them up, and sell them to unknowing consumers.  Vehicles without a  "branded title" ( Branded Titles are basically titles that note"water damaged vehicle" or a "Salvaged Title") may be sold to an unknowing customer even though it has been in a flood.  This occurs when the dealer's attempts to conceal any water damage and sell the vehicle without disclosing the fact the vehicle is a flood car.

If the vehicle's title is "branded" or notes the vehicle is a water-damaged vehicle then the dealer may attempt to "wash" the title.  Louisiana Law notes that if a vehicle's electrical system or power train is damaged by flood damage and totaled by an insurance company as a result, then it will receive the "water damaged" brand on the title.  


Title washing can occur when a person purchases a vehicle with a salvaged title or a water-damaged title and registers it in a state that does not recognize that particular "brand" on the title.  The new state then issues a clear title and the vehicle can be sold anywhere in the United States and passed off as a clean title.   Some states make it easy to "wash" a title.  For instance some states will not issue a branded title to a vehicle that is more than 7 years old.  What that means is that a purchaser can buy an 8 year old vehicle with a water-damaged title in Louisiana and then register in the new state an receive an unbranded title.  Once the vehicle has an unbranded title it can be sold anywhere in the US as a "clean title" vehicle.  

Title washing can also take place when a person actually physically alters the title in an effort to conceal the "brand" on the title (think photo-shop or white-out).  This is more difficult to do, but it does occur.   This is big problem if the title is held by the bank, as the bank employee may not scrutinize the title as closely as they should. 

What you Can Do To Try And Ensure You Do Not Purchase a Flood Damaged Car:  It is important for Oregon Consumers to inspect any vehicle they may buy.  That great deal on Craigslist may actually be a terrible deal for a car that is plagued with electrical issues.   Oregonians should inspect the vehicle.  They should examine underneath the vehicle to ensure there are not any mineral deposits, a "silt line," or significant mud.  The headlights may have mud or debris lines inside of them.  The interior and trunk should be inspected for any discoloration that indicates flooding.  If the vehicle smells funny (either of mold or heavy chemicals) that may be an indication of flooding.  The consumer should turn on and off all of the lights and radio, and operate any electrical features (windows, sunroof, rear windshield wiper)to ensure they all function properly.  

The consumer should also pull a title history report from Carfax or AutoCheck to determine: 1) if the vehicle has a branded title, and 2) to determine if the vehicle is from Louisiana.  However, these reports are not always accurate so they shouldn't solely be relied upon.   If the vehicle was bought or sold at a "Copart" auction yard that is a big red flag that the vehicle had a salvaged title. These tips may assist consumer's in protecting themselves from buying a flood car, but it may not completely protect you.

If you or someone you know unknowingly purchased a "flood car" or a car with a branded title in Oregon then please call Ross Law LLC at 503.224.1658.  Jeremiah Ross may be able to assist you with your consumer case in Oregon. 





Buy Here Pay Here-Questionable Auto Loans

As an Oregon Consumer Lawyer I regularly represent Oregonians who are ripped off by car dealers.  I regularly receive calls from consumers who has issues with Auto lenders.  These issues can relate to the interest rate being charged, yo-yo scams, issues with the financing disclosures, or dealers trying to make consumers provide false information in order to obtain financing.  Sometimes, in their effort to get the car off of the lot, dealers will flagrantly violate the various laws that apply to them.  Other times, the dealer's conduct is legal, but morally questionable.

I have seen this as a growing issue in Oregon.  I am not alone with my concerns.  It appears there is a national trend in providing questionable auto-loans to consumers.  These questionable loans are sometimes written with very high interest rates (29% APR) and for extremely long terms (7 years).  What this means is consumers buying an $8,000.00 car may end up paying almost $15,000.00 for the car after the interest is added into the price of the cars.


The dealer's justify the high interest and lengthy terms of the loan by asserting that the consumer is a huge credit risk.  Most of the consumers that obtain these loans have horrible credit and are likely to default on the loan.  I have litigated cases where the dealers have stated that my client's credit was terrible and that my clients were fortunate enough to have someone like the dealer take the chance to finance the vehicle. 

From the consumer's perspective, these loans set them up for failure.   The high interest rate for lengthy terms sets the consumer up for failure.  The dealer knows that most people need a car for transportation.  Vehicles are almost necessities in many cities.  Additionally, the dealer already knows the consumer has issues with paying creditors, because the consumer has terrible credit.  Despite that, the dealer piles on more debt in an effort to get the car off of the lot.  Then when the foreseeable missed payment happens then the dealer repossesses the car and can re-sell it to another customer.   

 The dealer makes money on the transaction by: 1) getting to keep the trade-in or down payment the consumer made on the car and, 2) keeping the interest on the loan from payments already made on the loan before missing a payment, 3) sometimes dealers will attempt to re-finance the purchased vehicle or agree to take the vehicle back if the consumer purchases another vehicle from the lot (this usually re-starts the cycle), 4) the dealer gets to re-sell the purchased vehicle to another consumer and make money on that transaction. 

Additionally, the dealer's risk is much more manageable than the dealer leads people to believe. Dealer's can place devices in the vehicles that allows the dealer to track the vehicle.  If a consumer misses a payment then the device can shut the vehicle down until a payment is made.  If the consumer fails to make a payment the dealer uses the device to locate the vehicle and repossess it.   I believe these devices are one thing that is allowing these bad loans to become more prevalent. 

The Comedian Jon Oliver recently did a great piece on Auto Lending and how these sub-prime loans are affecting consumers.  The piece has some shocking statistics and stories of people being ripped off by Auto Lenders.  

If you or someone you know has been ripped off or scammed by an Auto Dealer, please call Jeremiah Ross.  Please call Ross Law LLC at 503.224.1658 .   Please remember there are some reputable and honest car dealers, and just because you have a questionable loan that does not mean the dealer broke any laws or you have a case against them.   


Sometimes the stars align and I am able to achieve incredible results for my clients.   A recent case involving a car dealership that ripped off my clients is one of those instances where we somehow pulled off the impossible.  I don't know if I will be able to achieve the same results in a future case, but it feels good to make things right for my clients. 

My clients were ripped off in the purchase of two vehicles last year.   They had difficulty making payments on the vehicles and defaulted on the loans that totaled roughly $45,000.00.   Meanwhile we were involved in litigation with the dealership who denied any wrongdoing and attempted to paint my clients as deadbeats who could not pay their bills.   It took over a year to litigate the matter.  In the meantime, lenders were threatening to repossess the vehicles and sue for the deficiency.   

My clients prevailed in a private arbitration hearing, and the arbitrator awarded my clients over $40,000.00 plus attorney fees, and costs.  The award was based on the dealership violating Oregon's Unlawful Trade Practices Act (UTPA) and the Truth In Lending Act. Punitive damages were sought, but not awarded.

  In an effort to escape being held accountable for the judgment, the dealer then claimed they were going to assert Bankruptcy.  When a dealership files for bankruptcy it can put a stay on any debt collection efforts, so the filing must be taken seriously.  This is where things became interesting and a lot of posturing occurred between the parties.   While the parties were posturing, I had researched the law on the various ways this may play out.

At the end of the day we were able to collect roughly $25,000.00 from the Bond Company.  The dealership agreed to purchase the vehicles from the lenders and relinquished title to the vehicles to my clients full and clear of any encumbrances. That is just a fancy way of saying the dealership agreed to give my clients the vehicles in exchange for my clients not collecting on the arbitration award.   The dealer has managed to avoid Bankruptcy so far. I am not going to divulge the intricacies and maneuvering that occurred to get this done.  However, I believe it is achievable again in a very limited amount of cases. 

If you have been ripped off by an Oregon car dealer, please call Ross Law LLC at 503.224.1658.  Also, remember Jeremiah Ross also represents persons that are injured in car crashes, bicycle crashes, pedestrians that are injured by vehicles, and persons that are injured by the negligence of others.   Please call today for your free PERSONAL INJURY consultation.  REMEMBER: RESULTS MAY VARY!  Just because I could do this for two clients does not mean I will be able to achieve these results for any future clients.