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Car Buying Requirements

All four states legally require a person to be physically present to buy a vehicle. There are differences in the legal requirements when buying a new or used car in all four states. Below are our deep findings.

CALIFORNIA

  • For both new and used cars, a buyer needs to be physically present because the consumer protection law prohibits e-contracting. This is to protect buyers from fraudsters and overpricing of vehicles.
  • There are differences in the requirements if the car is used, this is, it has to meet the standard of “certified used car“.
  • During the purchase of a used car, the dealer must present an inspection report to the buyer and give a two-day cancellation period of purchase before signing the contract.

GEORGIA

  • For both used and new cars, the buyer needs to be physically present when purchasing a car.
  • One needs to be physically present to do a test drive and do an inspection for a used car.
  • The signing of the contract and carrying a copy of the agreement of the sale needs the buyer to be physically present.
  • The difference in the requirements is that for a new car the buyer is to be given a Lemons Law Rights statement that explains the Georgia Lemon Law Act at the time of purchase or lease.
  • For a used car the buyer is to be given a Buyer’s Guide that provides important information and notices to the buyer, including whether the vehicle is being sold “as is” or with a warranty and the percentage of repair costs a dealer will pay under the warranty.

MONTANA

  • For both the new and used car, the buyer is required to be physically present.
  • A buyer needs to read everything thoroughly before signing the documents and ask questions where he/she does not understand.
  • When purchasing a used car, one needs to check the vehicle’s history, this protects the consumer from fraud and unsafe vehicles.
  • When buying a used car, the dealer must remove the old plate and the buyer must apply for a new one.
  • While waiting for a new plate, the buyer may use a temporary registration permit (expires after 40-days) obtained from the Montana County Treasurer’s office or the car dealer.
  • When buying a new vehicle in Montana, Lemon Law must be applied to protect the buyer from purchasing a defective vehicle, this is, either the vehicle with less than 18,000 miles on the odometer or the one that’s over two years old.

NEW JERSEY

  • For both new and used cars, a buyer needs to be physically present.
  • This is because the buyer needs to obtain a written contract of the sale from the dealer.
  • Also, the buyer needs to obtain a written estimate of the car repairs from the dealer.
  • The Lemon Laws apply to both the new and used cars.
  • The Lemon Laws for a used car have a limit to protect the consumers who purchase vehicles no more than seven model years old, which mileage not in excess of 100,000, and a purchase price of at least $3,000 from a licensed dealer.
  • When buying a used car, the dealer must provide the Buyer’s Guide which describes the warranty, if one exists, or states that the car is being sold “as-is.” Cars sold “as-is” come with no expressed or implied warranty.
TDM

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