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Consumer Protection

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Safely Buying a Vehicle

Buying a new or used vehicle can be one of the most overwhelming and expensive purchases you can make. Everyone wants a good deal. In order to get a good deal and avoid big problems, you should:

1. Obtain a vehicle history

requirements iconOne of the easiest ways to protect yourself is to obtain a vehicle history report. A vehicle history report will provide information about any reported accidents or if the vehicle has ever been salvaged, rebuilt, or damaged in a flood. Beware of the scams out there trying to get your money. It is best to use an approved provider.

To obtain an official vehicle history report, visit vehiclehistory.gov. The providers on vehiclehistory.gov have been approved by the U.S. Department of Justice to provide official vehicle history reports to the public.

Check Your Vehicle History

2. Test drive the vehicle

test drive iconYou should never buy a vehicle unless you can test drive it first. Test driving a vehicle will give you the chance to experience how the vehicle drives and will give you the opportunity to experience any potential mechanical problems.

3. Take the vehicle to a mechanic

Mechanic IconUnfortunately, driving the vehicle isn’t enough to be sure that the vehicle is in good operating condition. To verify this, you should take it to a trusted mechanic.

Know Your Rights

Prior to buying a new or used vehicle, make sure you know your rights as a consumer.    The Indiana Attorney General’s office has an Auto Buyer Bill of Rights that can be viewed online.

View the Auto Buyer Bill of Rights

Does your vehicle have an open manufacturer recall?

Buy Smart and Stay SafeThe National Highway Traffic Safety website provides resources and information about staying safe on the road. You can also find out if there is a recall on your vehicle.

Visit the National Highway Traffic Safety website