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OMVIC Blog: Car Buying Tips

Used car shopping? Learn about mandatory disclosures!

Jul 13

Written by: OMVIC Communications
Thursday, July 13, 2017  RssIcon

Thinking about buying a used car? There is a lot of information out there, so paring down that information to what is essential can seem like a daunting task.

Once you have narrowed down your options on budget and brand of vehicle and are ready to start visiting dealerships, knowing about mandatory disclosure requirements is essential.

The mandatory disclosure requirement is one of the key pillars of protection offered to Ontario consumers who purchase from an OMVIC- registered dealer. Ontario’s Motor Vehicle Dealers Act (MVDA) requires dealers to disclose in writing a vehicle’s past use, history and condition. For example, if a vehicle has been in a collision and the damage exceeded $3,000, the dealer must disclose that, in writing. Providing disclosure verbally does not meet the requirements of the MVDA. So even if the dealer or salesperson verbally tells you about a previous collision or flood damage to a car, it is meaningless unless the statements appear clearly on the contract in writing.


Examples of What Car Dealers Must Disclose

  • If the motor vehicle had been recovered after being reported stolen
  • If the vehicle has sustained any damage caused by fire
  • If the vehicle was used as a police cruiser or emergency service vehicle
  • If the vehicle was used as a rental on a daily basis (and has not been subsequently owned by someone other than a dealer)
  • If the vehicle has sustained any damage caused by immersion in liquid that has penetrated to the level of at least the interior floor boards (flood damage)

Visit our page on mandatory disclosures for the full list  of disclosures that dealers and salespeople in Ontario are required to make. 

Only when consumers purchase or lease from a registered dealer, are they protected by Ontario's MVDA legislation enforced by OMVIC. Knowing what you should be seeing on your contract will help you make a smart and educated decision before you sign on that dotted line. Remember that an informed consumer is an educated consumer.


OMVIC Protects Car Buyers in Ontario

As the regulator of motor vehicle sales in Ontario, OMVIC protects consumers and maintains a fair and informed marketplace by:

  • Maintaining strict registration requirements for Ontario's 8,000 dealerships and 26,000 salespeople      
  • Regularly inspecting all Ontario dealers (new and used)
  • Providing free complaint handling to consumers
  • Developing/delivering consumer and dealer education/awareness programs
  • Investigating and prosecuting non-compliance of registered dealers and salespeople
  • Investigating and prosecuting illegal car sales (curbsiding)

Visit omvic.ca for more information about your car-buying rights.

 

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