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Can I be force to purchase if I already signed contracts to lease the vehicle?

San Diego, CA |

Traded-in my camaro to lease a fusion. Ford ended paying my payoff for my camaro, I put $3000 as a down payment, my monthly payment is $408.11, and a 36-month lease. I ended signing all the paper work, but a week later the dealer called me to informed me I won't be able to lease the vehicle due to the negative equity and have to purchase the car. The dealer wants me to go back to sign the new contracts , but I do not want to purchase the car.

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Attorney answers 3


Often times this attempt to get people to come back once, twice, even more, is a sign of car dealership fraud, which you should immediately consult with an experienced consumer attorney who handles car dealership fraud in your area. Who knows, it may be a pattern of this dealership to scam consumers with a bait and switch of having the person sign the papers for one price, then make them come back to pay a higher price and payments.

Visit and click the find an attorney tab, which allows you to specify for each state a particular area of law, such as automobile fraud and deception, which I have linked below. I would not play around with these people yourself, as they know how to get people over a barrel if they are intent on getting more money out of your pocket and into theirs. Also, leases are complex and confusing. Most consumers should avoid those types of agreements for a vehicle for personal use.

Robert Stempler (please see DISCLAIMER below)
Twitter: @RStempler

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The advice to seek a NACA attorney is excellent.

Also, it may be too late for the dealer; this will depend upon the contract you signed. When dealers want me to sign contingencies for unapproved credit, I stand up to leave--amazing how fast this changes their minds.

Anyway, you may already have a binding lease contract. If the dealer thought he could sell the paper, and was wrong, that's his problem. If the offer was contingent, it's probably your problem.

However, California has VERY strong consumer protection laws, so see a local NACA affiliated attorney, lease in hand.


It's important that you get an atty on this right away to advise you.
1- Do NOT "talk" to them anymore except in writing;
2- Have an atty review all current documents and communications;
3- They may or may not have a "right" to do this, but a good atty needs to check your paperwork to see AND to check for other violations of law;
4- IF they have "cancelled" the lease, you get the trade in and your down payment back and they get the car back, end of story. They CANNOT force you to sign new papers. They are either "in" or "out" of the deal, period. A good atty can help you lock their position in.

Feel free to read my recent blog on a Yo Yo situation like yours

AND also to get in touch as we handle these matters statewide.

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