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which states have a "cooling off"/return period on new cars?

Discussion in 'Other Cars' started by cwerdna, Feb 24, 2012.

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  1. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    So, in at least two separate recent threads, some respondents have made statements like these:




    What states is this valid in? There's no "cooling off" period for new cars in California.

    Are the above folks perpetuating a myth? Maybe it's true for their states? If so, I'd like to see official URLs stating so.

    Someone else said:


    My response to that was:


    I've only lived in WA and CA and per http://www.seattlepi.com/lifestyle/...ts-Myth-of-the-cooling-off-period-1254663.php, there's also no cooling off period in WA.
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  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    in mass, we have a 3 day for contracts. not sure how many miles you can put on a new car, if any.
  3. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney EditProfOptInfoCustomUser Title

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    New car purchases:
    Maine.gov: Government: News



    Basically there's no cooling-off period on sales outside the home. (That's mentioned in the used-car buyers guide.)

    Lemons:
    Office of the Maine AG: Consumer Protection: Consumer Law Guide: 07: The Maine Lemon Law And State Arbitration

    Links to: http://www.maine.gov/tools/whatsnew/attach.php?id=27925&an=1

    The page should say 3 years or 18,000 miles. (It's in the linked PDF). A used car can be a lemon as long as it's within the lemon period.
  4. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

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    My understanding is as far as Automobiles go, there is no automatic "Cooling Off Period".

    You might have rights if you were involved in fraud or misreprensentation, or if the vehicle proves to be a lemon. (That has to be established)

    But as far as an automatic, I've changed my mind...I'd rather unwind the deal? My understanding is no state automatically allows for this.

    Bottom line? You sign an auto contract, beware...make sure the contract you are signing is what you want....
  5. 2k1Toaster

    2k1Toaster HID Guru

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    From an online gov site for Texas:



    Basically, it doesn't apply. However, many dealers elect to put in cancellation clauses. This varies by the dealer, and they don't have to do it.

    And on the other side, we have signed car contracts from the house before. I am not sure how it applies to electronic contracts or contracts that are signed then electronically sent (like fax/email). Heck I did all my house paperwork online, I only showed up to pick up the keys and garage door opener. I was in and out in 5 minutes.
  6. Keiichi

    Keiichi Active Member

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    When I went to get my Prius v, I saw a sign next to the dealer's desk. California definite does not have a cooling off period, HOWEVER, it also stated that you can enact a cooling off period, for a percentage of the cost of the vehicle additional.

    Car Buyer's Bill of Rights FFVR 35
  7. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Thanks for the pointer to this list. I knew very well that cars had no cooling off period here, but needed a reminder for what contracts are covered.
  8. Skoorbmax

    Skoorbmax Senior Member

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    Lemon law has nothing whatsoever, zip to do with buyer's remorse, and yes I really do believe there are buyer's remorse laws on cars in certain states. I just checked my state and evidently there isn't one. And this is a liberal state...so perhaps many or most states do not have a cool off period.

    I thought this law was relatively pervasive and shame on me. But then, a lot of people think sugar still makes kids hyper, too :)

    I am aware that some dealerships or brands have return periods, though. There is at least one big car dealership near me that offers a no questions asked guarantee if you return the car because you didn't end up liking it.
  9. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    Anyone? I'm still waiting to hear of states w/cooling off periods on new cars.

    So, there's possibly one in MA. Any link to the details of that? How about other states?
  10. stevemcelroy

    stevemcelroy Active Member

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    Once a car is registered & titled with the state it is legally used - the car could still be sitting on the lot. At that point the car loses signifigant value and I can't imagine any state would allow you to backout after registration.

    Perhaps there are some states that allow a prospective buyer to back out prior to the finalization of the sale and still get back a deposit left to reserve a car.
  11. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    Still no answer to my original question w/credible references after almost 2 months?

    I'd love to be educated on this.
  12. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    ^ I think we've been educated. There are lemon laws that allow a car to be returned if it fits the definition of a lemon, and dealers that offer a return period as an incentive to buyers, but no state laws that require a dealer to take back a car without cause.

    I never thought there were.
  13. Skoorbmax

    Skoorbmax Senior Member

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    I googled in greater detail now. There are buyer's remorse laws in many states if not even at a federal level (though often answers on ehow are rubbish). That said, I cannot find a single link indicating a buyer's remorse law for automobiles in any state at all.
  14. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    If you want to know, look it up. You have access to the same online resources as the people living in the various states. If you can't find it on Google, they can't either.

    I'm going with daniel on this one: I think we have an answer.

    Tom
  15. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    I have better (and currently WAY more important) things to do than to look up such things I know already don't exist in WA and CA. If I want to be thorough and try all 50 states, that'll take me some time.

    I figure it's better for people who made the assertions regarding return/cooling off periods to tell me their source rather than me trying to read their minds, which doesn't work at all.
  16. massparanoia

    massparanoia Active Member

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    Unless a dealer offers something like a 3 day money back guarantee, then there is no such thing as a "cooling off period". As soon as you sign the certificate of origin and register the car, it is a used car. You may be able to unwind the deal, but you can't make a used car new again.
  17. Baldbubba

    Baldbubba Member

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    ok ok ok ok ok,,, where i live it is standard practice,, where you are it might not be,, I WAS WRONG,,, i bet being married to you is a joy!
  18. ftl

    ftl Explicator

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    You said in another thread that you're in Illinois, and this info that I posted there proves you wrong:

    Here's an official document from the Illinois Attorney General that says otherwise. The only right of return in Illinois is if financing is not approved (unless the dealer's contract specifically states that the car may be returned by the purchaser):
    No Three-Day Right to Cancel
    Dealers are not required by law to give car buyers a three-day right to cancel. The right to return the car in
    a few days for a refund exists only if financing is not approved. However, some dealers may, by contract,
    offer a right to cancel.​
    cwerdna and danvee like this.
  19. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    :rolleyes:
    One of my biggest pet peeves is people spreading misinformation. Since people (beyond the threads I pointed to) kept claiming all over the place on Priuschat that it was "the law" that you could return a new car, I wanted them to post reputable sources.

    It may very well be "the law" in some states. So far, nobody's come forward w/any proof that it is for any state. I'm still waiting...

    Wherever it is "the law", at least it'll be in one place on Priuschat, this thread.
    ftl likes this.
  20. Baldbubba

    Baldbubba Member

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    "The never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way."
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