(ELYRIA, Ohio) — Attorney General Dave Yost today announced a consumer protection lawsuit against a defunct used car dealership and its owners who failed to deliver vehicle titles to customers in northeast Ohio.
“The sale isn’t done until the customer has keys in one hand and a title in the other,” Yost said. “This dealership’s bad practices left customers with clenched fists, pointing their fingers at the people responsible.”
The lawsuit accuses Angelo Guzzo and Sean Nightingale of violating Ohio’s Consumer Sales Practices Act and Certificate of Motor Vehicle Title Act. The used car dealership, Rt. 82 Auto Gallery LLC, was located at 33735 E. Royalton Rd. in Columbia Station.
The Ohio Attorney General’s Office has received 33 complaints against the dealership in the past two years, most of them alleging a failure to provide titles. Yost’s Consumer Protection Section provided more than $70,000 in payments to impacted customers from the Title Defect Recision Fund, a program that helps used car buyers resolve title problems.
The lawsuit filed in the Lorain County Court of Common Pleas seeks reimbursement from Guzzo and Nightingale, as well as civil penalties and an order preventing them from holding dealer or salesperson licenses in Ohio.
Attorney General Yost reminds consumers to take the following steps when buying a used car:
- Check for any complaints against the dealership with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and Better Business Bureau.
- Get everything in writing and read the fine print.
- Take the vehicle for an extended test drive.
- Ask about prior damage, defects and repair history. Check out the vehicle’s history through the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System at nmvtis.gov
- Ask a trustworthy mechanic to check the car for problems.
- If a dealer does not provide you a title within 30 days of the purchase date, contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office.
Consumers who suspect an unfair or deceptive sales practice should contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at www.OhioProtects.org or 800-282-0515.