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The dealer sold me a bad car what can i do?

Hopkinsville, KY |

I recently purchased a vehicle that seemed to be alright at the start. A couple days later I started hearing odd noises. I tried calling the dealer back and asked if I could bring the car in to be looked at and serviced. They told me they could not help me because they did not have any certified mechanics for my make of vehicle. On top of that they sold me an extended warranty.So I decided to take it to an actual dealer where they sell my make of vehicle and they call me later that day to give me the breakdown of what is all wrong with the car. Then after they listed the issues with the car they then tell me that the warranty will not cover the damage to the car. Is it legal for them to sell me a warranty knowing that it wont work cause the aftermarket parts? What can be done on this?

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Attorney answers 3


Review the warranty carefully to determine whether the work should actually be covered. If you think it should be, I would suggest hiring an attorney to review the warranty and to speak to the dealer on your behalf. An attorney could also look into the possibility of getting the car fixed elsewhere and then suing the dealer for the costs if the warranty should actually cover the repairs. If the warranty does not cover what you expected or seems completely unreasonable, I would consider filing a consumer complaint or having an attorney file a complaint with the FTC.

No attorney-client relationship has been formed based on this message. This advice is not guaranteed. An attorney should be consulted for more complete and accurate advice.


Knowingly selling a worthless warranty would violate the Kentucky Udap law. You can file a claim against the dealer to recover your damages or maybe cancel the deal if the vehicle is in substantially the same condition as it was when you got it. In a Kentucky used car sale, where the vehicle is sold to you with a service contract (often called an extended warranty), you may have two different kinds of legal rights in many states. One is against the seller and the other is against the service warranty company. As for the service contract company, the only question is whether or not your problem is covered by their service contract. If it is, then their local dealer has to fix it under the service contract but you almost always are required to first notify the service contract company directly about the problem and ask for it to be fixed. The may tell you where to go for repairs. Also, virtually all service contracts have tons of exclusions and exceptions so you may have to argue to get them to cover your vehicle’s problems. Also check to see if your problems are covered by a manufacturer’s “secret warranty.” That’s where the factory knows there is a problem and tells their dealers (with a written notice called a “technical service bulletin”) that the factory will pay to have it fixed even if the new car warranty has expired. Here’s an article that discusses them: Your legal rights against the selling dealer, however, are mostly determined by the paperwork that you sign. Look to see if anything was written down about any kind of warranty or guarantee or right to cancel. Also there’s a federal law that requires all car dealers to post on the window of all used cars they are selling a special “Buyer Guide” form (it’s often called a Used Car Window Sticker) that discloses whether or not a warranty comes with the car. Many small lot car dealers don’t comply with the law. If they don’t, then you may end up with a warranty after all and you may even have the right to cancel the sale. The back side of the form has to be completely filled out and many car lots, big and small, fail to do that too and that can also trigger your right to cancel the deal. You can see what the Buyer Guide form looks like on this web site page: If you have any kind of warranty rights against the selling dealer, then the next question is whether or not your problem is covered by the warranty from the dealer. If it is, then they have to fix it. But you could easily have warranty rights and not even know it. You need to talk to a local Consumer Law attorney who deals with this kind of case (it's called "autofraud" or car sales fraud). Take all your paperwork with you when you meet with the attorney. Call your local attorney's Bar Association and ask for a referral to a Consumer Law attorney near you or you can go to this web site page for a Free Online 50 State National List of Consumer Law Lawyers ( and find one near you (lawyers don’t pay to get listed here and most of them are members of the only national association for Consumer Law lawyers, But act quickly because for every legal right you have, there is only a limited amount of time to actually file a lawsuit in court or your rights expire (it's called the statute of limitations), so don't waste your time getting to a Consumer Law attorney and finding out what your rights are. You might find this Avvo Legal Guide helpful on How to Avoid Buying a Lemon Used Car in the future: If this answer was helpful, please give it a thumbs up review below. Thanks. Ron Burdge,

This answer is for general purposes only and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Click the link to find a Consumer Law attorney near you.


Ron Burdge is right on as usual. Do note also that generally, if they sell you an extended warranty (legally called a service contract) then you are likely covered by the Magnuson Moss Consumer Warranty Act. This could get you well down the line to a place wherein the car needs to be "merchantable" (ie, it needs to work like virtually any other car) and if it is not, you may have cause to make them take it back. Contact Ron's office right away as I believe he handles matters in KY and is one of the nation's best lemon law and consumer protection attorneys.

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