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Can I return a new car purchased less than 24hrs ago?

Discussion in 'Car Sales, Dealers, Repairs, Lemon Law' started by JeanValjean8, Jan 13, 2002.

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  1. JeanValjean8

    JeanValjean8 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I just bought a new car and the girlfriend hates the color - I live in Tampa, Florida - can I return the car to the dealership and exchange it for a new one? What if they don't have the color I want at that dealership, can I cancel the deal?
     
  2. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

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    Are you saying that you want to return your used car to the dealership for a new one in a different color? Do you think it would be equitable under the law to allow you to cancel the deal that has already been satisfied by both parties? Remember, once the car leaves the dealership it becomes a used car -- who should pay for the reduction in value of the car?
     
  3. JeanValjean8

    JeanValjean8 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Yes basically I was wondering if, like when you purchase some other things, there was a period in which you could actually take the vehicle back and either exchange it for a different color or simply cancel the transaction altogether. I have been told annecdotal stories in the past of people returning cars, or finding their trade marked up three times the value they were offered, and they marched back into the dealership and voided the deal. I recall these individuals also telling me something to the effect that you could do this but I never heard about any hard and fast rules. I understand that there are lemon laws etc., but I was wondering if there was some type of "grace period" per se.

    Thanks.
     
  4. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

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    The point of my post was that it makes no sense to have a "grace period" that allows one party to cause huge losses to the other side. There is a grace period that MAY apply, which is usually a 72 hour period from the point of sale. Federal law allows someone to void a deal within a set period, e.g. for door to door solicitations which are "pressure sales" and the law recognizes a "cooling off" period so that the consumer can think of what just happened and contemplate the transaction. Some dealers do give you this 72 grace period -- several Internet car dealers permit you to return the car in the same condition in which it was sold but it usually needs to be accompanied with a bona fide statement why the car doesn't meet the description given.

    I'm unaware of any ability to simply void a contract where the result would be that the dealer would be forced to take a huge hit after you drove and used the car. I have heard similar stories but never met anyone who was able to pull this off just by quoting a statute that gave them the right to void a transaction. Usually it involved some type of fraud or other deceptive practice. Others used the Lemon Law -- something didn't work in the first few days and they had to bring the car back several times.
     

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