One of the extensive provisions of the Sansone dealerships’ settlement in the State of New Jersey is that they must disclose the prior use of the automobile including rental. Over the years, I have litigated numerous cases, with non-Sansone dealerships, where it has been alleged that the prior use of the automobile in the case of a rental must be disclosed. The dealerships would take the position that this is a non-material fact and, as such, need not be disclosed. I have taken the position numerous times, and have been successful in doing so, that this is a material fact and must be disclosed.
Ultimately this is very fair and that significant prior use must be told to the plaintiffs or the purchaser of the automobile. If the dealership thinks it might make a difference in the purchaser’s decision-making process, then it must be disclosed. Apparently now, the State has taken the position that a prior rental use of a vehicle is deemed a material fact. Therefore, a dealership cannot say the prior use of an automobile in the case of a rental is a non-material fact.
Please remember that only four Sansone dealerships were sued, and only four settled. There is no allegation and no inference should be taken that the others are doing anything improper.
THE DEALERSHIPS ARE AS FOLLOWS:
Fords National Auto Mart, Inc., which does business as Sansone Ford Lincoln Mercury in Ocean Township;
Paladin Chevrolet, which does business as Sansone Chevrolet in Avenel;
Sansone Plaza Dodge, Inc., which does business as Sansone Dodge in Ocean Township;
Sansone Management Corp., which does business as Sansone’s Route 1 Auto Mall in Avenel.
There is a consent judgment that has been entered in this matter.