Toronto Repair Shop Charged with Curbsiding
TORONTO, March 11, 2015 /CNW/ - OMVIC, Ontario's regulator of vehicle sales, has charged 2141212 Ontario Corporation, operating as Monterey Auto Repair and Amilcar Luis Monte Rey Nunez, Anibal Salomon Monte Rey Rios, Sergio Ruben Monte Rey Nunez and Bianca Daniela Lopez with curbsiding (acting as a dealer without registration), contrary to the Motor Vehicle Dealers Act (MVDA).
The Toronto-area group was also charged under the Consumer Protection Act (CPA) for allegedly committing unfair business practices: i.e. failing to disclose to purchasers that vehicles were previously accident-damaged, branded as "salvage" or written-off.
"The alleged conduct is egregious," claims Terry O'Keefe, OMVIC Director of Communications. "One of the charges relates to the sale of a vehicle with undisclosed accident repairs of more than $13,000."
OMVIC alleges that in one instance, a purchaser was provided two different keys for her vehicle: one to open the driver's door and one to turn on the ignition. It was later discovered the vehicle had been in a collision and the driver's door was taken from another car.
All parties are scheduled to appear in a Toronto Court on March 23, 2015.
The Motor Vehicle Dealers Act (MVDA) requires ALL vehicle dealers and salespeople to be registered with OMVIC.
Curbsiders are illegal, unlicensed vehicle dealers. Just as curbsiders commonly misrepresent themselves - often posing as private sellers - they also often misrepresent the vehicles they sell; many are accident-damaged, rebuilt write-offs or odometer-tampered.
"It is vital car buyers understand when they're protected, and when they're not," states O'Keefe. Since curbsiders are not registered with OMVIC, consumers who purchase from them are deemed to have conducted a transaction with a private seller and are therefore not protected by Ontario's consumer protection laws and do not have access to the Motor Vehicle Dealers Compensation Fund.
While curbsiders commonly pose as private sellers, many sell from small automotive-related businesses like repair centres or body shops. If a consumer is unsure whether a business selling vehicles is actually registered, they should conduct a search on OMVIC's website, or ask to see the seller's OMVIC licence. If they are unable to produce one, walk away!
How to Spot a Curbsider
Curbsiders often use one or more of the following tactics to dupe car buyers:
- Vehicle not registered to seller or only registered to seller for short period
- Vehicle often priced below market value
- Doesn't provide vehicle history report (CarProof or CARFAX)
- Refuses inspection by purchaser's mechanic
- Vehicle often not plated and/or uninsured; therefore test-drive is not possible
- Refuses to provide receipt or proof of purchase
To report a suspected curbsider, call 1-888-NO-CURBS (662-8727) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 2014, 49 individuals/businesses were convicted for curbsiding; 63 additional cases are currently before the courts.
Visit OMVIC's website to view a list of recent curbsider convictions.
OMVIC (Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council) administers and enforces the Motor Vehicle Dealers Act (MVDA) on behalf of the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services. OMVIC maintains a fair and informed vehicle sales marketplace by regulating dealers and salespersons, regularly inspecting Ontario's 8,000 dealerships and 26,000 salespeople, maintaining a complaint line for consumers and conducting investigations and prosecutions of industry misconduct and illegal sales (curbsiding). OMVIC is also responsible for administering the Motor Vehicle Dealers Compensation Fund on behalf of its Board of Trustees.
SOURCE Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council (OMVIC)
Image with caption: "Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council (OMVIC) (CNW Group/Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council (OMVIC))". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20150311_C4573_PHOTO_EN_13063.jpg
For further information: Terry O'Keefe, Director of Communications, 416-226-4500 x3525, Terry.Okeefe@omvic.on.ca, www.omvic.on.ca; Sarah Choudhury, Sr. Communications Officer, 416-226-4500 x3172, Sarah.Choudhury@omvic.on.ca, www.omvic.on.ca; Hassaan Shahid, Communications Officer416-226-4500 x3185, Hassaan.Shahid@omvic.on.ca, www.omvic.on.ca