In our experience, consumers have more problems involving motor vehicles than with any other type of purchase. State and federal laws provide consumers who lease or purchase motor vehicles with many protections, and an alarming percentage of motor vehicle sales or leases violate those laws. In most cases, a consumer who successfully brings suit under these laws can obtain a court order requiring the dealership or the finance company to pay the consumer's attorney's fees.
Consumer Law Group has handled hundreds of cases involving auto dealer fraud or violations of credit disclosure requierments. Although our past successes in no way guarantee that a similar result could be obtained in other matters, our representative cases include:
Krack v. Action Motors Corp. - An auto dealership sold the plaintiff a used sport utility vehicle that had previously had a salvaged title. The consumer initially brought the action in small claims court, where the most she could have obtained was $3,500. The dealership transferred the case to the regular docket, and the consumer retained Consumer Law Group to handle her claim. Following a trial, the court awarded the plaintiff over $9,000-- the difference in value between the amount paid for the SUV and its fair market value, plus all of her attorney's fees.
Benham v. Wallingford Auto Park - The dealership advertised that if a customer was not satisfied with their vehicle, they could exchange it for another car. The consumer attempted to exchange a car but was told that she could receive only the trade-in value rather than the amount that she had paid for the vehicle. The consumer returned the car to the dealership and sued to recover her money. Following a trial, the court awarded the consumer $5,000-- the amount that she had paid to the dealership-- plus $35,000 in punitive damages, plus attorney's fees.
In re Shoreline Motors Corp. - Consumer Law Group mediated and settled the claims of more than 120 consumers who had purchased vehicles from a dealership that was convicted in federal court along with multiple employees.
Drayton v. New Britain Auto Sales - A consumer prevailed in an arbitration against a dealership that had violated federal law by not properly disclosing the finance terms in a motor vehicle sale. The consumer was awarded a return of all amounts paid for the vehicle plus $1,000 for violating federal credit disclosure law and attorney's fees despite his use of the vehicle for more than a year.
Tirado v. James Motor Cars - A consumer brought suit against a car dealership and motor finance company for not properly disclosing the finance terms for a contract and for refusing to repair when it broke down after one week. Following a trial, the court awarded a return of the purchae price, $5,000 in punitive damages, $1,000 for violating federal credit disclosure law, and attorney's fees.
Consumer Law Group has also settled hundreds of cases against auto dealerships and finance companies for violating various consumer protection laws, and it has assisted hundreds of its clients in cancelling their motor vehicle contracts.
Trans Union contends that a low metro rating does not just reflect a geographically localized group of lackluster bill payers, but could indicate places where the unemployment rate is high or that were hit hard by home foreclosures.Read Attorney Kittell's full article Now whether your neighbor pays his bills affects your credit score?! which includes a summary of how the new ratings work and a list of the worst metro scores.
Many consumers have told us that they get several calls a day on their cell phones from a debt collector or creditor who is trying to collect a debt. Collection calls to cell phones can be particularly frustrating because most consumers always keep their cell phones with them. As a consequence, these consumers may find their cell phone ringing during business meetings, job interviews and important family functions. What can be even more frustrating for consumers is answering the call only to discover that there is nobody else on the line. We've heard about consumers who have had to say "Hello? Hello? Hello?" many times before they're connected with an operator. For others, they're greeted by a machine or hung up on.