Is my contract valid and what are my rights?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Is my contract valid and what are my rights?

I purchased a vehicle from Mercedes-Benz dealership in November 2017. When I purchased it I signed the contract under the impression that I would have tire and rim coverage and no other additional paid services. As time progressed I realize that my contract had been changed without my knowledge or consent. My sisters social security number was put on my contract and submitted to the finance rep and the tire and wheel protection was never put on my contract although I pay for it every month. Can I sue? Can I end my

lease early with no penalty since the contract was changed? What are my legal rights?

Asked on May 31, 2018 under Business Law, Delaware


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Making changes to the contract without your knowledge or consent could give you basis to void the contract for fraud: for the dealer misrepresenting (lying about) what you would get in order to induce you to sign. Fraud can allow the rescission (undoing) of contracts based on the fraud. You would have to return the car and would likely have to pay some amount for the use you did in fact make of it for 7 months (you can't use another's property for free, even when there is fraud), but would then be out of the contract and would get any amounts paid to date, other than the fair value for the use you made, returned. If the dealership will not voluntarily do this, you'd have to sue for a court order voiding the contract due to fraud, so you would need to factor the cost of litigation into you calculus as to what to do.
The failure to provide the tire and rim coverage as promised could alternately provide a basis for 1) getting back all amounts for it paid to date and 2) having that cost deleted from your monthly payments going forward. If you are otherwise satisfied with the car, then rather than trying to get out of the contract entirely, which the dealership would presumably fight (thus resulting in litigation), you may be best off trying to negotiate with them for monetary compensation based around their failure to provide the time/rim coverage.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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