Senior citizen duped by a “free car” flier then forced to wait in the sun for almost 9 hours before “purchasing” a car she did not want because the dealership refused to return her old car.
An elderly woman who resides in Missouri received a flier from a large car dealership which told her that she had won a free car. She called the number on the flier, and was again told that she had won a free car. When she arrived at the dealership, she was forced to wait for three hours in the sun because the dealership’s computer system was down. The dealership then took her old car from her and then told her she had not actually won a car and subsequently tried to sell her a different vehicle. As she did not have her old car, she could not leave. After a total of 8 or 9 hours in the sun without any food or water, confused and wanting to go home, she finally gave in to the unrelenting pressure and agreed to buy the car. The dealer then forced her to drive home—in the new car and with a salesperson with her—to collect several thousand dollars in cash to pay for the new car. When she returned to the dealership, she was forced to sign a stack of documents without reading them. The next day, she realized what was happening and immediately attempted to get out of the sale. She has since returned the car, but is still receiving collection letters from the bank, and the dealership refuses to return her money.
She has retained a Missouri Consumer Attorney who is representing her in a case utilizing the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act.
Under SB 5, she would be left with no recourse and with no money, and would likely be forced to pay the bank for a car which she no longer owns, and never wanted.