Vehicle Returns

Vehicle returns: You bought a vehicle, but no longer like it. Can you return it?

In most cases, a recently purchased vehicle cannot be returned to a dealership within 24 hours, 10 or 30 days, or if you “try out” the vehicle and don’t like it.

In British Columbia, there is no law requiring a dealership to take a vehicle back, even if you are not satisfied with the vehicle. In most cases, if you bought a vehicle, it’s yours. The contracts signed between the dealership and you are likely binding.

Limited Exceptions

  • You may be able to return a vehicle if the dealership has an advertised or stated return policy. Not all dealers do this and the terms of the return policy will vary by dealer
  • If you are leasing a vehicle, you may be able to return a vehicle because there is a one clear day cooling-off period. This means that, unless you waived your right to the cooling-off period in writing, you can cancel the lease without penalty within this time period. One clear day (definition can be found at this link) is a legal period that can change due to holidays, Sundays and other factors
  • You may be able to return a vehicle that did not meet the minimum standards required for a motor vehicle to be driven on the road at the time you bought it
  • You may be able to return a vehicle if, when it was sold to you, there was a material misrepresentation about the vehicle—such that the vehicle cannot be used as designed or in the way you told the dealer you intended to use the vehicle

If any of the above applies, you can try to resolve your dispute with the dealership. You may also file a complaint with the Vehicle Sales Authority. Each case is unique and whether the law will allow you to return a vehicle will be dependent on the facts. Consumer Protection Facts ‘How to Resolve a Dispute’ available here and ‘Filing a Complaint with the VSA’ available here may be helpful.

The VSA can only investigate matters within the authority delegated to it by the provincial government. The VSA can administer and enforce the Motor Dealer Act and its regulations, and certain provisions of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act as they relate to the sale of personal use motor vehicles. See the Legislative Authority of the VSA Consumer Protection Facts available here for more information.

Violations under the Sale of Goods Act are generally outside the jurisdiction of the VSA. Consumers are encouraged to seek legal advice to make sure their rights are protected. Click here for Additional legal resources Consumer Protection Facts.

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.

Click here for the pdf