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Dealer Admits to Unconscionable Acts and Practices

Thursday, 09 March 2017 20:45

A Wichita, Kan., car dealer has entered into a consent judgment with the Sedgwick County Office of the District Attorney involving allegations of unconscionable acts and practices involving car sales.

The agreement between Jones & Co. Auto Group and the district attorney’s Consumer Protection Division called for the dealership to provide full restitution to a consumer in the amount of $4,568.75. Jones & Co. will pay a total of $6,355.90 in restitution, civil penalties, investigative expenses and court costs.

The district attorney alleged that Jones & Co. sold the consumer a vehicle that fell below legal standards after the engine had to be replaced shortly after the purchase. The car’s engine failed 25 miles from the dealer’s lot at 4550 S. Broadway.

In Kansas, automobile suppliers are specifically prohibited from selling cars “as is.” Suppliers must disclose specific defects to consumers so there is equal bargaining power between suppliers and consumers.

Jones & Co. Auto Group agreed to refrain from the deceptive or unconscionable practices.



NYC Debuts Used Car Buyers Bill of Rights

Wednesday, 08 March 2017 21:49

The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs announced a new Used Car Buyers’ Bill of Rights.
The “Bill of Rights” informs New Yorkers of rights they have under the city’s Consumer Protection Law and also provides tips for what to watch for when purchasing a used car.
The department made the announcement at a press conference with federal, state, and city consumer protection agencies, including the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Better Business Bureau serving Metropolitan New York, and the Federal Trade Commission.
The Bill of Rights advises consumers that they have a right to buy a car at the advertised price, the right to know all the details of a financing agreement before signing any paperwork, the right to arrange financing with an appropriate entity other than the dealership, and that the city’s laws protect New Yorkers from discrimination when they are seeking access to credit. Additionally, it advises consumers that used-car dealers in New York City must be licensed by DCA, post the total selling price for each used car where the car is being offered for sale, post a refund policy where the sales take place, and certify that a car is safe to drive at the time of sale, among complying with other requirements.
DCA has received more than 650 complaints from New Yorkers in recent years about problematic practices, ranging from deceptive advertising, to high-pressured sales tactics, to faulty vehicles, and more.

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Auto Complaints Rank Low on FTC Portal

Tuesday, 07 March 2017 00:01

Auto related issues made up 3 percent of consumer complaints received by the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Sentinel Network in 2016.
There were 84,673 complaints logged on the website. Auto complaints ranked No. 8 on the overall list.
Debt collection was first with 859,090, making up 28 percent of all complaints.

Business Owners Consider Regulation a Serious Problem

Friday, 17 February 2017 20:11

Roughly half of all small business owners say regulations are a “very serious” or “somewhat serious problem,” according to the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB).
According to the survey, 25 percent of small employers say regulations are a “very serious problem.” Another 23 percent say regulations are a “somewhat serious problem.”
While regulations affect small businesses of every size, firms with 20 to 249 employees seem to be struggling the most. Among that cohort, 38 percent described regulations as a “very serious problem.” Another 26 percent said regulations are a “somewhat serious problem.”
Twenty-eight percent of small employers cited cost as their biggest regulatory problem. Other problems cited were: “understanding how to comply” (18 percent); “extra paperwork” (17 percent); and “time delays” caused by regulations (10 percent).
Slightly more than half of small firms said the number of regulations with which they must comply has increased in the last three years. Within that figure, 65 percent of firms with 20 to 249 employees said their regulatory burdens have increased in the last three years.