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503-378-6002 or Kristina.Edmunson@doj.state.or.us
About Ellen F. Rosenblum
Attorney General Hardy Myers today filed an agreement with a Portland used car dealer for selling vehicles that could not pass emission inspections mandated by the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). Named in an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance filed today in Multnomah County Circuit Court is Affordable Auto Wholesale, Inc. The assurance admits no law violation.
"It's important to remind Oregon consumers that when purchasing a car from a dealer, they should assume that it is legally operable unless both parties have signed an agreement to the contrary," Myers said. "In that same vein, customers purchasing cars in the Portland and Rogue Valley areas should assume that vehicles offered for sale by used car dealers will pass DEQ emission tests and that failure to do so violates state consumer protection laws."
Beginning in 2001, Oregon Department of Justice enforcement officers identified a "rash of complaints" against Affordable Auto regarding the sale of cars that could not make it through DEQ emission inspections. Affordable had previously entered into an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance in 1998 over knowingly selling and financing cars to consumers who couldn't afford them.
Under the agreement, Affordable will correct any emissions problems that consumers are having with cars purchased from their lot and will not sell motor vehicles that are not in compliance with motor vehicle pollutant, noise control and emission standards adopted by the DEQ under Oregon law. Furthermore, if within 60 days of the purchase, the vehicle fails to pass DEQ emissions tests or a defect is discovered resulting in the vehicle not passing the tests, the purchaser is entitled to a rescission of the transaction and a full refund, if the company can not correct the problem in a reasonable time. The buyer is entitled to the rescission even if the company did not know or did not have a reasonable basis to know the vehicle had such a defect.
Affordable paid Justice $3,000 for its Consumer Protection and Education Fund.
For more information about the DEQ vehicle inspection program go to www.deq.state.or.us or call toll-free at 1-877-476-0583.
Consumers wanting information about consumer protection in Oregon may call the Attorney General's consumer hotline at (503) 378-4320 (Salem area only), (503) 229-5576 (Portland area only) or toll-free at 1-877-877-9392. Justice is online at www.doj.state.or.us.
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