Can Dealerships Sell Cars With Open Recalls?

The answer depends on whether you are buying a used or a new car. Generally, a dealership has no right to sell a new car with an open recall. However, if they mark it as “used”, they can sell a car with an unfixed recall. The truth is that it takes days to fix cars with open recalls. For example, it may take up to 60 days for the parts to arrive. This may reduce the value of the car. If the car is “used”, however, the dealership may go ahead and sell it as it is. However, of course, used cars are worthless as it is thus it does not make sense to reclassify a new car as used simply to sell it faster. 

According to the Carfax report, 3% of all used vehicles have open recalls in any given year. The sad thing about recalls is that the car owners don’t go through the trouble of taking the car to the dealer and problems stay unaddressed in 25% of the cases according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports. So, if you are really determined to buy a used car, make sure you take some steps to ensure that either the recall work was done or that you are at least aware of what needs to be done to fix the vehicle. 

What To Do If You Bought a Used Car With an Open Recall?

First, recalls are not so dreadful as they may seem. Manufacturers fix the errors free of charge and that’s a good thing. One thing to pay attention to is if the repair takes a long time. Also, be mindful of the issue repeats itself. Although recalls are mostly preventive measures there are times that the recalled component fails repeatedly. In those cases, you can actually lemon the vehicle because of the recall concern. 

On the flip side, if you asked your dealer and they mislead you into believing that there are no recalls and, perhaps, sold you the vehicle as a certified pre-owned, you might have a dealer fraud claim against the dealer. After all, an open recall may significantly affect the safety and/or value of the vehicle. Such material factors should be disclosed before a vehicle is sold. 

If you suspect that your vehicle’s recalled component broke more than one or that you were misled when you acquired your vehicle, call The Margarian Law Firm for a FREE CONSULTATION. We know how to get a refund of your money so that you can move forward and acquire a new/safer vehicle. 

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