Section 10 of 20

DMV Dealer Continuing Education

Vehicle History Disclosure Requirements

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New Vehicles, Condition of Vehicle & Known Damage

California Used Vehicle Dealers are not required to disclose prior accidents or frame damage.

However, a Used Vehicle Dealer could be exposed to legal action if they withhold information to get a sale. For example, the Dealer states the vehicle was never in an accident and they know otherwise.

Prior to entering into a Contract on a new (or previously unregistered) vehicle, all Dealers are legally required to fully disclose (in writing) any damage, including, but not limited to, material damage, known by the Dealer and not repaired.

You must disclose previous damage to the new vehicle Buyer if the value of the:

  • Repairs (parts & labor) exceeded $500 or  3% of the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (new vehicles)
  • Value replaced bolt-on parts exceeded 10 percent of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price of the vehicle
  • Damage was to the frame, drivetrain or suspension (requiring repairs other than wheel balancing or alignment)
  • Damage occurred in connection with a theft of the entire vehicle


Written Disclosure for any aftermarket add-on items

You must disclose any vehicle modifications which alter the vehicle from the vehicle manufacturer’s original specification.

Examples of this would include suspension, oversized tires & wheel or exhaust systems.

Maintenance type repairs that do not alter the vehicle do not have to be disclosed.


Previous rental, taxi, police or law enforcement history

All Dealers must disclose to your Buyer if the vehicle is, or ever was a:

  • Taxi vehicle — formerly used “for hire”
  • Rental Car
  • Police or Law Enforcement vehicle — formerly used by law enforcement

You are legally required to fully disclose the vehicle’s condition and prior history to your Buyer, in writing. Failure to provide these disclosures is a cause for action against your license.


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