Auto Fraud and Emissions Testing

Georgia Law requires that all sellers of gasoline-powered cars and light-duty trucks (8,500 pounds gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) or less), regardless if they are a private party, dealership or auctioneer, must sell a vehicle with a current, valid passing Georgia Vehicle Emission Inspection Report (VIR) if the buyer is going to register the vehicle in one of the 13 metro Atlanta counties: Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Paulding or Rockdale. It is important to note that this rule applies even if the vehicle is sold outside of these counties.  Vehicles sold “as is” are not exempt from the requirement and must also be sold with a current, valid passing VIR.

391-3-20-.18 Sale of Vehicles. Amended.

(1) No person shall sell any responsible motor vehicle, as defined by the Act, intended for highway use without a currently valid passing Certificate of Emission Inspection, as required under this Chapter, if the purchaser is required to register the vehicle in any covered county. Any person violating this Rule shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

Used Car dealers in Georgia are specifically directed to comply with the regulation in the rules governing used car dealers.

681­9­.02 Responsibilities of a Used Motor Vehicle Dealer.

(1) Every used motor vehicle dealer licensed in this state shall be required to comply with the laws of this state and the federal government regarding the operations of a used motor vehicle dealership. This includes, but is not limited to, laws that require each licensee to:  (r) Obtain a passing emissions inspection on all vehicles sold to purchasers who will register the vehicles in covered emissions counties, as required by Department of Natural Resources Rule 391­-3­20­-.18 .

O.C.G.A. 12-9-54 specifically makes such conduct a crime.  O.C.G.A. 10-1-390 makes it an unfair business practice to commit a crime in the sale to consumer goods such as a car much like it is unfair to roll back an odometer.  So the Georgia consumer may have a civil claim against the seller of a car which will not pass emissions.

So what should you do? 1) You should visit the web site http://www.cleanairforce.com/motorists/vir-reprints/ to check when your car last passed an emission test. 2) You should read and print this web page and confront your dealer with this information; 3)  You should make a complaint with the Clean Air Force folks and the Governor’s Office of Consumer Protection and The Ga Used Car Dealer’s board about the dealer’s conduct.

If you believe you’re a victim of fraud in a used car purchase, call our office today at 770-832-0300 or use our online form to request a free case evaluation.