middle and upper income families purchase new cars they are protected
by a "Lemon Law." Low income families who can only afford to buy used
cars have much less protection. Their used cars only have to be able to
pass inspection and "operate properly in normal usage for a reasonable period of time." The period of time that is "reasonable"
depends mostly on what the consumer paid. Now the Legislature may take
away even that protection and let used car dealers turn a blind eye to a
car's problems and sell it "as is".
example, one low income single mom had a car with a lot of miles on it.
She had gotten an income tax refund, and she wanted to trade for a car
with fewer miles that would keep getting her to work. She went to a used
car lot, test drove a car around the block and it ran fine! She traded
in her old car. She gave the dealer her tax refund as a down payment.
She agreed to pay additional monthly payments. She started to drive the
car home. However, she lived at the top of a hill and her newly
purchased car had a bad transmission that would not pull the car up the
Under current law the dealer has to fix the
transmission. If an "as is" bill passes, then she will not be able to
get her old car back, she will not be able to get her down payment back,
and she will still owe the additional monthly payments. In addition,
she will have to pay a bunch of money to fix the transmission before she
can use the car to drive to work and support her family.
We are OPPOSED to SB 216
that lets used car dealers turn a blind eye to bad cars and sell them
"As Is". Write the House Judiciary Committee now and let them know we don't want to let dealers sell lemons with no recourse for buyers!