FTC again waters down your used car buyer rights

The FTC Buyers Guide can be misleading
The Federal Trade Commission is at it again. They still won't tell car dealers to speak the truth about the used cars they are selling to the public. But they could - if they wanted to. Here's your chance to make them to do it.

The FTC created the administrative law that requires car dealers to post a Buyers Guide form on the window of every used car that is for sale. The idea was great when it first came up back in the 1970's. They argued about it until the law finally was approved and went into effect in 1985.

Why does it matter to you? Because what is on that sticker becomes part of your sales contract when you buy a used car anywhere in the US.

Now the FTC is considering the first major changes to be made to the Buyers Guide form. As it is now, the car dealer has to disclose if you are buying the vehicle with a warranty or "as is" plus, if you get a warranty, what it will cover, how long it will last, and what (if anything) you have to pay to get warranty work done. That's fair. Every buyer should know if the dealer is going to stand behind the car they are selling, right?

Well, do you think every buyer should also know about the car's defects and malfunctions in the car that the dealer already knows about? Or should the car dealer be allowed to hide that from the buyer?

For example, if the car dealer knows the used car has an engine that is failing and probably won't last another 5,000 miles, shouldn't the car dealer have to disclose that? After all, it could easily cost $8,000 or more to replace the engine in many cars. Well, the FTC argued about that and decided, "no - car dealers don't have to disclose known defects in the cars they sell." Sort of like, take the money and run.

That's just not right.

You can stop the FTC from letting car dealers hide the truth by telling them so and it's easy. You can do it online by filling out the "public comment" form online at - Don't let car dealers hide the truth from you.

The proposed law has other problems too and you can read about more of them at the Americans for Financial Reform website.
You can learn more about your used car lemon law rights at

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Since 1978