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Is it dealer fraud if the car advertisement states a much lower odometer reading then when you buy it?

Oxnard, CA |

July 29,2013 ,car advertisement stated 20538 miles on car for sale. August 5,2013 we looked at the car in person and it read 24269. There was multiple different car ads for this vehicle, all stating basically stating 20538, give or take a few. How can 4000 miles get on a car this fast or is this advertising fraud?

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Filed under: Fraud Used cars
Attorney answers 2


It would depend upon the overall circumstances, but you might have a fraud claim against the dealership. From the looks of it, this appears to be a false advertisement. Of course, there may be an explanation as to how the vehicle got those miles on it (although highly unlikely). Did you purchase the car? Save the ad? Those are two questions any attorney you speak with will need to know when you speak to him/her about this case. Most attorneys will provide you with a free initial consultation. You can use the Find a Lawyer tool on Avvo if you like. Good luck to you.

The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advice" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyze this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.


Mr. Blasser is correct, as usual. Of course a fraud means you reasonably relied upon this and you were fooled by it and you were hurt by it. That does not seem to be the case here. If you found out after making the purchase and your contract misstates the mileage, then dealer is going to have some real issues. For now, a solid negative Yelp! may be all you've got in your arsenal and even that, if challened by dealer, may get you into hot water, as dealers have no issues whatsoever suing to protect their "pristine" reputations! So, if you Yelp, make sure to be VERY accurate with facts...

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