In November 2016, the Federal Trade Commission announced its final changes to the Used Car Rule, formally referred to as the Used Motor Vehicle Trade Regulation Rule, which requires motor vehicle dealers to display a winder sticker, known as the “Buyers Guide,” on used vehicles offered for sale. Due to numerous questions raised by dealers regarding compliance with the revised Used Car Rule, the FTC issued guidance in the form of frequently asked questions (FAQs) to address the principal areas for which the agency has received inquiries.
The FTC’s FAQs cover the following varied subjects:
- Whether and what type of changes can be made to the language, format, and font of the Buyers Guide;
- Disclosure requirements regarding manufacturer and third-party warranties;
- Guidance for describing the “systems covered” portion of the revised Buyers Guide;
- Issues applicable to selling “certified” vehicles;
- Procedures for disclaiming additional warranty coverage;
- Disclosure requirements related to service contracts;
- Disclaiming of implied warranties and state law requirements and prohibitions related to such disclaimers;
- Complying with minimum warranty coverage required by state law and how to complete the “systems covered/duration” portion of the Buyers Guide; and
- Negotiating sales of vehicles with terms different from the Buyers Guide and reflecting such changes appropriately on the Guide.
The FAQs do not, however, address those compliance issues related to disclosure of safety recalls or vehicle history.
The amended Rule included a one-year grace period permitting dealers to use their remaining stock of Buyers Guides before implementing the new version. The deadline for compliance is fast approaching, and all dealers must use the new version by January 28, 2018.