Should the FTC or the NHTSA or even Congress step up and regulate the undisclosed trade of “lemon buyback” vehicles? [closed]

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The Politicus
Oct 18, 2021 12:48 AM 0 Answers
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I seek, among other things, to understand if there is an apathy in the U.S. and whether it is the reason for the lawmakers own indifference of the issue which otherwise affect thousands of vehicles each year nationwide.


Imagine the following scenario: You purchase — or yet worse: Undertake a loan — for a vehicle with a balance on its original manufacturer warranty on the premise the it had no issues other than anything minor. So far so good.

After the purchase, problems ensue, the vehicle needs substantial repairs, engine, airbag etc. and potentially some minor problems as well, and the vehicle ends being a regular at the shop for moths spending several weeks there while you keep jumping in and out of similar loaners. Then you learn the vehicle actually were returned for the same major problems only for the manufacturer to buy your car back and sell it without disclosing it knew.

Turns out you could have been spared by a big sticker on your car “lemon law buyback”, but absent federal regulations, manufacturers simply pass these cars between their subsidiaries across states and evade these duties and spare themselves from the loss associated with putting the scary decals on customers cars.

The implications may be dire. When selling the vehicle, you are required by law to disclose issues actually known to you and of material importance. Arguably, knowing your vehicle is an undisclosed lemon law buyback or a “laundered lemon” may substantially affect your selling propositions concealment may result in a finding of criminal fraud.

Absent federal laws banning these practices, one may only relay common law causes of actions to sue back, for e.g. if an action or conduct of one is “outrageous”. The trier of fact is typically the people of this questions as it, by definition, is based not on statutory law, but the lack thereof and on our shared conscience and reasonable moral judgements.

Therefore, my questions are:

  1. Would you consider such a sale to you outrageous? If not, why?

  2. Do you consider the conduct in the above example intolerable in a civilized society? If not, why?

  3. Do you think legislative action is desirable to require manufacturers to brand the title of these cars generally without regard to the state of repurchase or sale? If not, why?

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  • October 18, 2021