How you're protected when buying a car
When dealers arrange a car loan through a bank, federal consumer protection laws apply.
When dealers arrange a car loan through a lender that is provincially or territorially regulated, such as a credit union, provincial or territorial consumer protection laws may apply. Keep in mind that some independent companies that specialize in car financing are not regulated at all.
Consumer protections laws require that a lender, or the dealer, give consumers a disclosure statement before entering into an agreement. The disclosure statement explains the total cost of borrowing and other important information. Read this document carefully before you sign a contract to get a car loan. Make sure you get a copy of the disclosure statement.
Making a complaint about your car loan
If you have a complaint related to your loan, you should contact your lender.
All federally regulated financial institutions must have a complaint-handling process in place.
If your lender is provincially or territorially regulated, contact the appropriate provincial or territorial regulator.
Car leases are covered by provincial and territorial consumer protection laws.
Most provinces and territories require that the dealer give you a disclosure statement before you agree to lease a car. The disclosure statement explains the total cost of leasing the car and some of your obligations under the lease agreement. Read this document carefully before you sign a contract to lease a car. Make sure you get a copy of the disclosure statement.
Making a complaint about a car dealership
Dealerships and car sales are regulated by provinces and territories. If you believe a dealer misrepresents itself, contact your provincial or territorial government’s car sales regulator or consumer affairs office.
Car sales regulators
- British Columbia: Vehicle Sales Authority of British Columbia (VSABC)
- Alberta: Alberta Motor Vehicle Industry Council (AMVIC)
- Ontario: Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council (OMVIC)
Provincial and territorial consumer affairs offices
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