Area used car dealers settle with state over deceptive practices
HARRISBURG, Pa. – Used car lots based in Dauphin and York counties are among businesses in five counties that are being sued or have filed settlements as the result of a statewide sweep organized by the Office of Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
Credit Connection Auto Sales, Inc.
A settlement was filed with Credit Connection Auto Sales, Inc., which offers vehicles on a lease-to-own basis at its locations in Harrisburg, York and Carlisle. Filed in the form of an assurance of voluntary compliance, the settlement requires the company to pay a $12,500 civil penalty for alleged violations of the Consumer Protection Law, the Pennsylvania Auto Regulations, the Truth in Lending Act and the Federal Trade Commission’s Used Car Rule.
Credit Connection allegedly engaged in fraudulent and deceptive conduct that was likely to create confusion or misunderstanding. The dealership advertised cars for sale but when consumers attempted to buy these vehicles they were only offered a lease.
Additionally, under the terms of the settlement, the company must begin using lease agreements that comply with federal law within 90 days and comply with the Consumer Protection Law and the Auto Regulations in the future.
The settlement agreement was filed in the Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas by Deputy Attorney General Nicole DiTomo of the Bureau of Consumer Protection.
Those Car Guys, LLC
A settlement, reached in the form of an assurance of voluntary compliance, was filed with Those Car Guys, LLC, which operates from a lot in York County. While transitioning to a new location, the company allegedly permitted salespeople to privately sell vehicles from their homes. These “off-lot” sales are alleged to be in violation of the Board of Vehicles Act, the Vehicle Code, the Auto Regulations and the Consumer Protection Law.
The settlement requires the company to pay $5,000 in civil penalties for these alleged violations. Individual salespeople have also executed settlements in the form of assurances of voluntary compliance for selling these vehicles from their homes and not at the dealership location. These individual salespeople will be required to pay $1,000 in civil penalties for their alleged violations of the Board of Vehicles Act, the Auto Regulations and the Consumer Protection Law.
The settlement agreement was filed in the York County Court of Common Pleas by Deputy Attorney General Nicole DiTomo of the Bureau of Consumer Protection.
In the Commonwealth, it is unlawful for a person to engage in the business of a motor vehicle salesperson without securing a license from the State Board of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers, Dealers and Salespersons. Consumers who wish to file a complaint regarding their purchase of new or used motor vehicles are encouraged to call the Bureau of Consumer Protection at 1-800-441-2555. Consumers may also visit www.attorneygeneral.gov to file an online complaint.