Every prelease agreement shall be in writing, which shall contain all of the agreements of the parties with respect to entering into a consumer lease and shall be signed by both parties.
No prelease agreement shall be binding on a prospective lessee unless all of the following apply:
All of the information required to be disclosed in a consumer lease under s. 429.203 (3)
is disclosed in writing to the prospective lessee before the execution of the prelease agreement by the prospective lessee.
The prelease agreement contains, directly above the place for the prospective lessee's signature, a notice in substantially the following language in bold-faced capital letters of not less than 10-point type:
NOTICE TO PROSPECTIVE LESSEE
1. THIS IS A BINDING PRELEASE AGREEMENT. BY SIGNING THIS PRELEASE AGREEMENT, YOU WILL BECOME OBLIGATED TO ENTER INTO AN AGREEMENT WITH THE PROSPECTIVE LESSOR TO LEASE THE MOTOR VEHICLE DESCRIBED IN THIS PRELEASE AGREEMENT WHEN IT IS AVAILABLE AND READY TO BE DELIVERED TO YOU, UPON LEASE TERMS DISCLOSED IN THIS PRELEASE AGREEMENT OR IN THE ATTACHED DISCLOSURE STATEMENT, IF ANY.
2. DO NOT SIGN THIS PRELEASE AGREEMENT BEFORE YOU READ IT, INCLUDING THE WRITING ON THE REVERSE SIDE.
3. DO NOT SIGN THIS IF IT CONTAINS ANY BLANK SPACES.
4. YOU ARE ENTITLED TO AN EXACT COPY OF ANY AGREEMENT YOU SIGN.
An exact copy of the prelease agreement shall be furnished by the prospective lessor to the prospective lessee at the time that the prospective lessee signs the prelease agreement. The prospective lessee's copy of the prelease agreement shall contain the signature of the prospective lessor identical with the signature on the original prelease agreement. No prelease agreement shall be signed in blank except that a detailed description of the motor vehicle, including the serial or identification number, that is not available at the time of execution of the prelease agreement may be omitted.
A prospective lessor may cancel a prelease agreement that, with regard to the lease terms disclosed in the prelease agreement, is contingent upon approval of the prospective lessee's credit by a sales finance company to whom the prospective lessor intends to assign the consumer lease, if the prelease agreement contains a provision requiring the prospective lessor to give the prospective lessee written notice of the cancellation within 10 business days of execution of the prelease agreement and the notice is given to the prospective lessee.
No prelease agreement may contain a clause which, upon nonacceptance of the motor vehicle by the prospective lessee, would subject the prospective lessee to a penalty greater than 5% of the gross capitalized cost of the vehicle.
History: 1999 a. 31
No manufacturer, wholesaler, or distributor, and no officer, agent, or representative of a manufacturer, wholesaler, or distributor, shall induce or coerce, or attempt to induce or coerce, any retail motor vehicle dealer or prospective retail motor vehicle dealer in this state to sell, assign, or transfer any retail installment sales contract, obtained by the dealer in connection with the sale by the dealer in this state of motor vehicles manufactured or sold by the manufacturer, wholesaler, or distributor, to a specified sales finance company or class of sales finance companies, or to any other specified person, by any of the following acts or means:
By any express or implied statement, suggestion, promise or threat, made directly or indirectly, that the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor will in any manner benefit or injure the dealer.
By any contract, or any express or implied offer of contract, made directly or indirectly to the dealer, for handling motor vehicles manufactured or sold by the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor, on the condition that the dealer sell, assign or transfer the dealer's retail installment contracts on motor vehicles manufactured or sold by the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor, in this state, to a specified sales finance company or class of sales finance companies, or to any other specified person.
By any express or implied statement or representation, made directly or indirectly, that the dealer is under any obligation to sell, assign or transfer any of the dealer's retail sales contracts, in this state, on motor vehicles manufactured or sold by the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor to a sales finance company, or class of sales finance companies, or other specified person, because of any relationship or affiliation between the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor and the sales finance company or companies or the specified person or persons.
Any statements, threats, promises, acts, contracts or offers of contracts, set forth in sub. (1)
are declared unfair trade practices and unfair competition and against the policy of this state, are unlawful and are prohibited.
No sales finance company, and no officer, agent or representative of a sales finance company, shall induce or coerce or attempt to induce or coerce any retail motor vehicle dealer to transfer to the sales finance company any of the dealer's retail installment sales contracts in this state on any motor vehicle by any of the following acts or means:
By any statement or representation, express or implied, made directly or indirectly, that the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor of the motor vehicles will grant the dealer a franchise to handle the manufacturer's, wholesaler's or distributor's motor vehicles if the dealer will sell, assign or transfer all or part of such retail sales contracts to such sales finance company.
By any statement or representation, express or implied, made directly or indirectly, that the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor will in any manner benefit or injure the dealer if the dealer does or does not sell, assign or transfer all or part of the dealer's retail sales contracts to the sales finance company.
By an express or implied statement or representation made directly or indirectly, that there is an express or implied obligation on the part of the dealer to so sell, assign or transfer all or part of the dealer's retail sales contracts on the manufacturer's, wholesaler's or distributor's motor vehicles to the sales finance company because of any relationship or affiliation between the sales finance company and the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor.
Any statements or representations set forth in sub. (3)
are declared to be unfair trade practices, unfair competition and against the policy of this state, and are unlawful and are prohibited.
Any retail motor vehicle dealer who, pursuant to any inducement, statement, promise or threat declared unlawful under this section, shall sell, assign or transfer any or all of the dealer's retail installment contracts shall not be guilty of any unlawful act and may be compelled to testify to each such unlawful act.
No manufacturer shall directly or indirectly pay or give, or contract to pay or give, anything of service or value to any sales finance company licensee in this state, and no sales finance company licensee in this state shall accept or receive or contract or agree to accept or receive directly or indirectly any payment or thing of service or value from any manufacturer, if the effect of the payment or the giving of the thing of service or value by the manufacturer, or the acceptance or receipt of the payment or thing of service or value by the sales finance company licensee, may be to lessen or eliminate competition or tend to grant an unfair trade advantage or create a monopoly in the sales finance company licensee.
History: 1999 a. 31
; 2001 a. 38
See also ch. Trans 139
, Wis. adm. code.
A motor vehicle may not be offered for sale by any motor vehicle dealer or motor vehicle salesperson unless the mileage on the motor vehicle is disclosed in writing by the transferor on the certificate of title or on a form or in an automated format authorized by the department of transportation to reassign the title to the dealer and the disclosure is subsequently shown to the retail purchaser by the dealer or salesperson prior to sale. The department of transportation may promulgate rules to exempt types of motor vehicles from this mileage disclosure requirement and shall promulgate rules for making the disclosure requirement on a form or in an automated format other than the certificate of title.
It shall be unlawful for any motor vehicle dealer or motor vehicle salesperson to fail to provide, upon request of a prospective purchaser, the name and address of the most recent titled owner and of all subsequent nontitled owners, unless exempted from this requirement by rule of the department of transportation, of any motor vehicle offered for sale. If the most recent titled owner of the motor vehicle is the motor vehicle dealer, the dealer or salesperson shall also provide the name and address of the previous titled owner.
Except for motor vehicles obtained by involuntary transfer under s. 342.17
, a person required to be licensed under this chapter may not sell, offer for sale or have possession of a motor vehicle if any of the following applies:
The mileage disclosure statement of the previous owner is not complete.
The assignment or reassignment of ownership by the previous owner is not complete.
A motor vehicle dealer who is required to process an application for transfer of title and registration under s. 342.16 (1) (a)
shall comply with the requirements of s. 342.16 (1) (am)
History: 1999 a. 31
; 2005 a. 25
See also chs. Trans 138
, and 154
, Wis. adm. code.
Purchase or lease of motor vehicle by minor. 218.0147(1)(1)
No minor may purchase or lease any motor vehicle unless the minor, at the time of purchase or lease, submits to the seller or lessor a statement verified before a person authorized to administer oaths and made and signed by either parent of the purchaser or lessee, if the signing parent has custody of the minor or, if neither parent has custody, then by the person having custody, setting forth that the purchaser or lessee has consent to purchase or lease the vehicle. The signature on the statement shall not impute any liability for the purchase price of the motor vehicle or for any payments under the consumer lease to the consenting person. The statement shall not adversely affect any other arrangement for the assumption of liability for the purchase price or any lease payments which the consenting person may make.
If a motor vehicle is purchased by a minor, the signed statement described in sub. (1)
shall accompany the application for a certificate of title and shall be filed by the department of transportation with the application. Failure to obtain the consent or to forward it, together with the application for a certificate of title in the event of the purchase of a motor vehicle, shall not void the contract of sale or consumer lease of a motor vehicle in the hands of an innocent holder, without notice, for value and in the ordinary course of business.
Any person who sells or leases a motor vehicle to a minor with knowledge of that fact without procuring the statement described in sub. (1)
may be fined not more than $200 or imprisoned for not more than 6 months or both.
History: 1999 a. 31
The licensor may appoint annually one or more local advisory committees and one general advisory committee, each consisting of not more than 9 members. The committees upon request of the licensor may advise and assist the licensor in the administration of ss. 218.0101
. The members of the committees shall receive no compensation for their services or expenses.
History: 1999 a. 31
Rules and regulations. 218.0152(1)
The licensor shall promote the interests of retail buyers and lessees of motor vehicles relating to default, delinquency, repossession or collection charges and the refund of the finance charge and insurance premium on prepayment of the installment contract or consumer lease. It may define unfair practices in the motor vehicle industry and trade between licensees or between any licensees and retail buyers, lessees or prospective lessees of motor vehicles, but may not limit the price at which licensees may sell, assign or transfer receivables, contracts or other evidence of any obligation arising out of an installment sale or consumer lease made under ss. 218.0101
The division of banking, department of transportation and division of hearings and appeals shall have the power in hearings arising under this chapter to do all of the following:
Determine the place, in this state, where the hearings shall be held.
Take and permit the taking of depositions of witnesses residing in or outside of this state and to otherwise permit the discovery and preservation of evidence before hearing, in the manner provided for in civil actions in courts of record.
Pay the witnesses described in subd. 2 the fees and mileage for their attendance that are provided for witnesses in civil actions in courts of record.
If the licensor has reason to believe that a violation of ss. 218.0101
has occurred, the licensor may issue subpoenas to compel the attendance of persons to be examined or the production of materials regarding the violation. Subpoenas shall be issued and served in accordance with ch. 885
A person providing information under this subsection may request that the information be designated as a trade secret, as defined in s. 134.90 (1) (c)
, or as confidential business information. The division of hearings and appeals or licensor shall approve the designation if the person providing the information demonstrates that the release of the information would adversely affect the person's competitive position. At least 15 days before any information designated as a trade secret or as confidential business information is disclosed to any other person, the division of hearings and appeals or licensor shall notify the person providing the information. The person providing the information may seek a court order limiting or prohibiting the disclosure, in which case the court shall weigh the need for confidentiality of the information against the public interest in disclosure. Confidentiality is waived if the person providing the information consents in writing to disclosure.
The licensor may promulgate such rules as it considers necessary or proper for the effective administration and enforcement of ss. 218.0101
, but no licensee shall be subject to examination or audit by the licensor except as provided in s. 218.0116 (5)
History: 1999 a. 31
See also chs. Trans 137
, and 144
, Wis. adm. code.
Except for s. 218.0116 (1) (a)
, and except for violations for s. 218.0114 (1)
, or 218.0147
, any person violating ss. 218.0101
may be required to forfeit not less than $25 nor more than $500 for each violation.
History: 1999 a. 31
; 1999 a. 138
; 2001 a. 38
Commencement of action.
Upon the request of the licensor, the department of justice or the district attorney may commence an action in the name of the state to recover a forfeiture under s. 218.0161
. An action under s. 218.0161
shall be commenced within 3 years after the occurrence of the unlawful act or practice which is the subject of the action.
History: 1999 a. 31
Without exhausting any administrative remedy available under an agreement or ss. 218.0101
, except as provided in ss. 218.0116 (7)
, a licensee may recover damages in a court of competent jurisdiction for pecuniary loss, together with actual costs including reasonable attorney fees, if the pecuniary loss is caused by any of the following:
A violation by any other licensee of s. 218.0116 (1) (bm)
, or (ys)
An affected grantor's disapproval of a proposed action under s. 218.0134 (2) (b)
, if the division of hearings and appeals has determined that there is not good cause for not permitting the proposed action to be undertaken following a hearing under s. 218.0134 (2) (c)
. A dealer may recover under this paragraph even if the affected grantor complies with the order of the division of hearings and appeals under s. 218.0134 (3) (b)
. If a dealer recovers damages for pecuniary loss, actual costs under this paragraph also include actual costs, including reasonable attorney fees, incurred by the dealer in obtaining the division of hearings and appeals' determination of good cause.
If a court finds that a violation or practice described in sub. (1) (a)
is willful, a licensee shall recover damages in an amount equal to 3 times the pecuniary loss, together with actual costs including reasonable attorney fees.
In any action brought under this subsection, the burden of proof as to liability shall be the same as set forth in ss. 218.0114 (7) (d)
, 218.0116 (7) (b)
, and 218.0116 (8) (b)
regarding complaints brought before the division of hearings and appeals, but the burden of proof as to damages shall be on the licensee seeking damages.
For purposes of subs. (1)
, "licensee" means a person or entity holding a license at the time the cause of action arose regardless of whether the person or entity holds a license at the time an action under this section is commenced.
Any retail buyer, lessee or prospective lessee suffering pecuniary loss because of a violation by a licensee of s. 218.0116 (1) (bm)
may recover damages for the loss in any court of competent jurisdiction together with costs, including reasonable attorney fees.
A complainant or petitioner who prevails against a manufacturer, importer, or distributor as a result of a complaint or petition filed with the division of hearings and appeals based on an alleged violation of ss. 218.0101
or under s. 218.0116 (7)
shall have a cause of action against the manufacturer, importer, or distributor for reasonable expenses and attorney fees incurred by the complainant or petitioner in connection with all proceedings resulting from the complaint or petition. This subsection does not apply:
If the division of hearings and appeals finds that the manufacturer, importer, or distributor was substantially justified or that special circumstances make an award of expenses and attorney fees unjust.
History: 1999 a. 31
; 2001 a. 31
; 2003 a. 77
; 2005 a. 256
; 2011 a. 91
; s. 35.17 correction in (1) (c).
Only a licensee may recover under this section; a claim must be related to the scope of the license. Ford Motor Co. v. Lyons, 137 Wis. 2d 397
, 405 N.W.2d 354
(Ct. App. 1987).
Sub. (2) authorizes recovery of reasonable costs and reasonable attorney fees by retail purchasers who prevail on claims under s. 218.0116. Sub. (2) and s. 218.0116 manifest a legislative purpose to provide recovery of the reasonable expenses of the litigation, and such an interpretation is necessary to harmonize otherwise conflicting provisions of sub. (2) and 814.04. Recovery of only s. 814.04 enumerated costs would discourage litigants with legitimate claims from seeking relief and undermine the statute's effectiveness in suppressing prohibited mischief. Kolupar v. Wilde Pontiac Cadillac, Inc. 2007 WI 98
, 303 Wis. 2d 258
, 735 N.W.2d 93
A dealer's refusal to sell the manufacturer's products after filing a complaint under s. 218.01 (2) (bd) 2. [now 218.0114 (7) (d)] is a violation of that provision, and consequently of s. 218.01 (3) (a) 4. [now 218.0116 (1) (bm)], entitling the manufacturer to treble damages under sub. (9) (am) [now s. 218.0163]. American Suzuki Motor Corp. v. Bill Kummer, Inc. 65 F.3d 1381
Repair, replacement and refund under new motor vehicle warranties. 218.0171(1)(a)
"Collateral costs" means expenses incurred by a consumer in connection with the repair of a nonconformity, including the costs of obtaining alternative transportation.
The purchaser of a new motor vehicle, if the motor vehicle was purchased from a motor vehicle dealer for purposes other than resale.
A person to whom the motor vehicle is transferred for purposes other than resale, if the transfer occurs before the expiration of an express warranty applicable to the motor vehicle.
A person who leases a motor vehicle from a motor vehicle lessor under a written lease.