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Unannounced car inspections take place in Dublin and Kildare, Ireland

Christian Fernsby ▼ | October 12, 2020
The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has completed a series of unannounced inspections of garages and second hand car dealerships in Dublin and Kildare on 6-8 October.
Dublin street
Inspections   Dublin street
Teams of Authorised Officers inspected vehicles for evidence that traders may be in breach of consumer protection law. All of the traders identified for inspection have been subject to multiple complaints to the CCPC in 2020 for the sale of clocked and crashed cars.

Topics: Ireland

Vehicle crime is a serious offence under the Consumer Protection Act 2007. Where a trader provides misleading information when selling a car e.g. a false odometer reading, if the vehicle is not roadworthy, or if the vehicle has been written off by an insurer, it can have serious and even fatal consequences for consumers.

A trader who provides false, misleading or deceptive information is subject to Section 47 of the Consumer Protection Act and if found guilty of these offences is liable for a fine of up to €3,000 and up to six months in prison.

During the course of the last week’s inspections, a number of potential offences were identified by the CCPC officers including misleading commercial practices in accordance with section 47 of the Consumer Protection Act.

Speaking about the inspections, Patrick Kenny, Member of the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission said, “Misleading a consumer about the history of a car is a very serious offence. Not only can it be costly but critically, it can also be dangerous.

Consumers need to be able to rely on accurate information from car dealers in relation to a vehicle’s roadworthiness and its history, particularly its mileage and any damage history. These inspections should act as a reminder to all car dealers that if you mislead consumers then you are liable to face criminal prosecution.

The CCPC will continue to conduct unannounced inspections around Ireland and will use our powers to take enforcement action against traders who may be breaking the law.”

The CCPC helpline has received 2,119 contacts from the public in relation to vehicles so far this year and 198 of these relate to potentially clocked and crashed cars. The four most common car complaints received by the CCPC are clocked cars, crashed cars, outstanding finance and disguised sellers.