In South Carolina, a car loan agreement is a binding contract that cannot be reversed within any grace period. What's more, South Carolina's lemon law, which protects consumers from defective vehicles, applies only to new cars. However, you do have options when it comes to returning a used car to the dealer.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, all used cars must include a buyer's guide that provides the purchaser with the vehicle's warranty information. If the used car dealer does not provide you with this information, you may have legal recourse to return the vehicle to the dealer. The buyer's guide must be attached to the vehicle and list the terms of the warranty, any vehicle maintenance or mechanical issues, and what percentage the dealer will pay in repairs if the vehicle contains a warranty. Other federal laws that protect used car consumers include the Truth in Lending Act and the Federal Odometer Act.
Unfair and Deceptive Acts and Practices
You may be able to return a used vehicle to the dealer if you suspect that the dealer withheld information about the vehicle or made false promises. If you suspect unlawful practice, consult South Carolina's Unfair and Deceptive Acts and Practices, or UDAP, law, which is written in the state's legal code under Chapter 5 of Title 39, which contains Commerce and Trade. For an online, full copy of Title 39, visit the state legislature's website.
Uniform Commercial Code
Like the Unfair and Deceptive Acts and Practices law, South Carolina's Uniform Commercial Code protects buyers from unlawful acts involving credit or loan agreements, including contracts for used cars. If you suspect that your used-car dealer violated your legal rights while writing the car loan, you may have legal recourse to return a vehicle. For a full, online copy of Title 36, Chapter 5 of the South Carolina Code, visit the state legislature's website.
Finding Legal Representation
If you are having trouble navigating the federal or state laws on used-car dealer violations, you are not alone. Returning a vehicle is a tricky matter and may require a personal lawyer. For a database of consumer lawyers, visit the National Association of Consumer Advocates.