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Dealer Requesting Modification of Sale Contract

Discussion in 'Car Sales, Dealers, Repairs, Lemon Law' started by Cozamo, Jul 12, 2020.

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  1. Cozamo

    Cozamo Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I purchased an unregistered demo vehicle with 4,000 miles on the odometer. The car is an electric vehicle. At the time of purchase, the dealership informed me the vehicle is still considered "new" and eligible for the EV tax credits. I assumed this also meant that I am eligible for the California clean vehicle rebate. However, the CA CVRP requires that the car be defined as "new" according to California Vehicle Code (CVC) Section 430. Based on the CVC Section 430, the vehicle is considered new if it is unregistered. However, the definition of used vehicles as defined in Section 665 include "unregistered vehicles regularly used or operated as demonstrators in the sales work of a dealer." When I purchased the vehicle, I signed a used vehicle disclosure form in which the car was listed as an unregistered demo vehicle. However the retail installment sale contract listed the vehicle as new which eased some of my concern as the CA CVRP requires I submit a purchase agreement with my rebate application.

    More than a week after I signed the original contract, the dealership contacted me requesting a change in the contract stating that California requires the vehicle be disclosed as used so the sales contract must be modified to list the vehicle as used. I have sent emails out to the CA CVRP as well as the IRS to verify my eligibility for the CA rebates and federal tax credits. If it turns out that I don’t qualify for the rebate or tax credit and the dealership refuses to negotiate a lower price, I would like to return the car. If I refused to sign this new contract and agreed to returning the vehicle back to the dealership, am I entitled to receive a refund of my down payment? They have already cashed the check I wrote for the down payment.
     
  2. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    It isn't about what you'd like to do, rather its about what you agreed to do when you signed the contract.

    You might be able to renegotiate, if you speak to the right person in the dealership's chain of command, and are solicitous, rather than demanding.

    It never hurts to ask.

    If you don't ask a question, you won't get an answer.

    You could refuse to accept delivery permanently, but there is always a cost to making such a choice if offered.

    Read the contract to see what this might end up costing you.
     
  3. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Start by understanding that car dealers are liars and thieves. I have no idea what kind of consequences will ensue but you can bet the dealer isn't going voluntarily accept the car back and give you a refund.

    In fact, if you return the car it's a repo. It goes to the finance company to be sold at auction and trashes your credit. Worse, it'll probably sell for less than you owe on it and you will still owe money.

    Were I in your place I would tell the dealer to pound sand and you aren't signing anything. Then see what happens.
     
  4. mightymoose

    mightymoose Moderator

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    You are not obligated to do anything at all. Review the sales contact and understand the language that may allow the dealer to cancel the contract. If you are beyond the time the contract allows, then there is nothing wrong with saying no, or ignoring the dealer altogether.
    If the dealer still has time and cause to cancel the contract them be prepared for that to happen. You would likely owe a prorated amount for the time you had the vehicle. The contract should explain everything.

    Personally, if I was happy with the way things are, I would not do anything that might change that.
     

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