Misrepresentation and Defective Automobiles Tops U.S. Consumer Complaints Survey for 2009

A recent nationwide survey by the Palm Beach Post that places auto woes at the top of the list again comes as no surprise to Norman Taylor, Principal Attorney of leading California Lemon Law firm Norman Taylor & Associates. For many years the U.S produced and sold around 15,000,000 new cars and trucks every year. While the current recession has made a serious dent in these numbers, we still manufacture and sell in the neighborhood of 11,000,000 cars and trucks per year. That’s a lot of paperwork, a lot of contracts & leases and a lot of advertising and of course a lot of complaints.

On July 21, 2010 the Consumer Protection Bill passed both the House and the Senate. If one were asked what group deeply involved in finance was completely excluded from the bill, would anyone have guessed that it was automobile dealers all across the United States? Probably not!

Many articles and blogs have been written explaining how this happened. It is even likely that half a dozen good conspiracy theories are floating around. It doesn’t matter, the deed is done and the dealership lobbies prevailed. This means that the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) writes the rules that tell the dealerships what they can and cannot do when making a deal with a client.

The Post’s survey includes the following categories of complaint associated with consumer automobile experiences.

• Misrepresentations in advertising or sales of new and used cars
Defective Automobiles (also known as lemon cars)
• Faulty repairs
• Leasing and towing disputes

The people who call us usually have a painful story to tell. The anticipation and pleasure of owning their first new car or good used vehicle has been washed away by disappointment, frustration and loss.

What is the answer?

It depends on who you ask. If you ask the manufacturers they will tell you that their customer service departments are perfectly capable and willing to satisfy every possible complaint. In reality, having dealt with these “advocates”, consumers are not convinced. Seldom has more help been promised and less been delivered. If you ask the consumer, he or she will tell you, just get them to stop lying; make them understand that truth in lending means, stop lying. Convince them that treating consumers as though they are ignorant is insulting and despicable.

A good remedy for consumers would be to contact a California lemon law attorney or qualified attorney of your state if you think you are being lied to, are driving a lemon car, or are given the run around.

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