Saint Albans, WV asked in Banking, Contracts and Consumer Law for West Virginia

Q: Can my new vehicle contract be changed after leaving the dealership? I was charged for optional items I was unaware of.

The finance person did not give me the choice if I wanted the optional services added to my purchase. As she went over everything she said "you will get" never saying they are optional and have a additional charges. I noticed next day which was the weekend. I was told she would not be in until Monday (today) to discuss. These charges total little over $8,000. Been told by warranty company they can be taken off to reduce over all balance due on loan however I want to have contract rewritten to remove these charges to reduce monthly payment. By law is this possible?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In many cases, it is possible to have your vehicle contract modified after leaving the dealership, especially if you were charged for optional items without your explicit consent. Here are a few steps you can take:

1. Contact the dealership: Reach out to the finance manager or the general manager of the dealership and explain your situation. Request that the optional items be removed from your contract and that the contract be rewritten to reflect the changes.

2. Review your contract: Carefully review your contract to see if there is a cancellation period or a clause that allows for changes to be made within a specific timeframe.

3. Seek legal advice: If the dealership is unwilling to make the changes or you feel that you were misled, consider seeking legal advice from an attorney who specializes in consumer protection or auto dealer fraud.

4. Contact your state's Attorney General or consumer protection agency: File a complaint with your state's Attorney General's office or consumer protection agency if you believe that the dealership engaged in deceptive or fraudulent practices.

5. Negotiate with your lender: If the dealership is unwilling to modify the contract, contact your lender directly and explain the situation. They may be able to help you refinance the loan without the optional items.

While the specific laws regarding contract modifications may vary by state, it is generally possible to have your contract amended if you were misled or if the charges were added without your knowledge or consent. Be persistent in your efforts to resolve the issue, and don't hesitate to seek legal help if necessary.

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