Chanel 5 News in Florida reports that many used car owners often do not know that their vehicle has been recalled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), sometimes for a serious defect. Also, many consumers are not aware that used car dealerships are not required to notify consumers if a vehicle has been recalled.
While new car dealerships are not allowed to sell vehicles that have “open recalls,” used car dealerships do not have the same requirement. Experts believe that approximately 25 percent of cars that have been recalled have never been repaired, with many of those vehicles for sale on used car lots or driven by a current owner. According to the article, in 2010 alone, there were 20 million vehicle recalls in the U.S.
Many people have called for the implementation of laws that would prohibit a used car dealership from selling vehicles with open recalls. Others, however, oppose such regulations, stating that requiring a dealership to search to see if recalls exist, checking the vehicle identification number (VIN), and repairing the defect, would place an unfair burden on used car dealerships.
If you are looking to purchase a used car, you can visit the NHTA’s vehicle recall site at http://www.safercar.gov to learn whether a vehicle has been recalled. However, the site does not have a way to check a vehicle’s VIN. To learn whether the car you are thinking of purchasing has been recalled, you will likely need to contact the manufacturer or an authorized dealer. It is also a good idea to have the vehicle inspected before purchasing it to ensure you do not become a victim of used car fraud in California and throughout the United States.
Attorney and consumer advocate Howard D. Silver may be able to help if you believe you have been a victim of used car fraud. Mr. Silver has dedicated his practice to protecting the rights of consumers. Call (855) 341-2611 to find out more about your legal rights.