The Vehicle Sales Authority (the “VSA”) licenses and oversees all franchise and independent motor vehicle dealers in B.C selling personal-use vehicles, as well as the salespeople employed at those dealers. For more information about the VSA’s mandate please see the Consumer Protection Facts “Legislative Authority of the VSA” available here.
If a manufacturer, like Tesla, sells or leases directly to consumers, it must be licensed by the VSA for consumer transactions with respect to personal-use vehicles. However, not everything a manufacturer does is regulated or regulated by the VSA. In fact, there is not one regulatory body in the country for manufacturers.
Depending on your dispute with the manufacturer, you may need to contact one or more of the following organizations:
|Issue or Concern||Organization||What can they do|
|Financing or leasing problems with the financing or leasing company of a manufacturer that are not related to the representations made during the transaction||Office of the Federal Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI)||They may have jurisdiction depending on how the financing is set up. A list of federally regulated financial companies can be found here|
|New Vehicle Warranty Disputes or Vehicle Assembly Defects||Canadian Motor Vehicle Arbitration Plan (CAMVAP)||CAMVAP helps resolve disputes with participating manufacturers on vehicle defects or warranty through arbitration. All services are free. If you use CAMVAP, you may have to give up your right to sue in a court.|
|Misleading advertising (If there is no licensed B.C. dealer identified in the advertising)||Competition Bureau Canada||A complaint may be made under the Competition Act, which prohibits false or misleading representations and deceptive marketing practices.|
|Safety-related defects and recalls. A safety-related defect is a defect in a part or parts of a motor vehicle that occurs at the design, manufacturing or assembly stage of the motor vehicle.||Transport Canada- the Federal Ministry of Transportation||Safety-related defects can be reported to the Defect Investigations and Recalls Division of Transport Canada. They will document complaints and launch investigations, if warranted. Where required, manufacturers issue recalls of all vehicles affected.|
If you have any questions, please contact VSA Consumer Services.
NOTE: This is to provide general information and is not intended to be legal advice.