Dear Consumer Ed:

I purchased a car from an auction and have since changed my mind about the car.  Can I return the car and get a refund?

Consumer Ed says: 

Probably not. An auction company is generally not required to refund the purchase price of a vehicle when a customer changes his or her mind.  However, if the auction company does not assign and process the title and tag for the buyer within 21 calendar days of purchase, the buyer is entitled to a full refund of the purchase price.  Outside of this exception, an auction company is usually not required to refund the purchase price of a vehicle. But, if you have not received the title within 21 days, you can file a complaint against the auction company by contacting the Governor’s Office of Consumer Protection at 404-651-8600 or 1-800-869-1123 or by visiting www.consumer.ga.gov

You may be under the impression that you have an automatic right to cancel if you do so within three days; however, contrary to popular belief, only certain types of transactions fall under the Door-to-Door Sales Rule (which is commonly known as the “three-day right to cancel”).   The Door-to-Door Sales Rule does not apply to vehicle purchases. Therefore, when buying a car, especially a used one, consumers should be sure to check out the vehicle thoroughly and read the contract carefully before signing anything.  For more guidelines on purchasing a vehicle, visit www.ConsumerEd.com.

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