I-TEAM uncovers state action & federal lawsuit against Carvana

2nd administrative complaint filed against car company by state of Florida

The News4JAX I-TEAM has uncovered more complaints against Carvana involving people who have purchased a used car from the company.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The News4JAX I-TEAM has uncovered more complaints against Carvana involving people who have purchased a used car from the company.

The state of Florida has filed a new administrative complaint against the company for taking too long to turn over the titles to several different car buyers. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles accuses the dealership of selling eight cars to eight different Florida customers between December 2020 and March 2021 and failing to turn over the title and registration to the buyers within 30 days — which is required by state law.

It’s the second administrative complaint filed against the Carvana car dealership by the state of Florida, following a settlement with the state in September that resulted in $6,000 in fines related to the complaints of a dozen customers.

State officials also told the News4JAX I-TEAM that based on other complaints and their own audits, they have open investigations of Carvana — which could result in additional administrative actions by the department.

RELATED: I-TEAM investigates car dealer facing fines in multiple states including Florida | I-TEAM: Complaints mount against car dealer

Carvana is facing similar complaints over titles, registrations, and tags from customers in California, Texas, Michigan, North Carolina and now Pennsylvania, where consumer law attorney Robert Cocco has filed a federal lawsuit against the company.

“We’re not only suing on behalf of these two individuals but seeking to have to represent a larger group of people that we believe exists, not only in this commonwealth, but beyond it, east of the Mississippi, those other individuals which could number in the thousands who have the same experience,” Cocco said.

In the class-action lawsuit, Cocco alleges one of his clients was given six temporary license tags over an 11-month period from various states, including Arizona and Tennessee, before the buyer received their title and registration.

With regard to those out of state temporary tags, the lawsuit goes on to say “Carvana concealed from the Plaintiff that it was not authorized by either the States of Tennessee or Arizona to do so” and later alleges “Carvana’s state law compliance policies and practices are such that it routinely issues multiple temporary license tags in violation of state laws governing the issuance of temporary license tags.”

“Some people really find this to be a desperate circumstance, one which they never anticipated. It’s such a common factor in any car purchase agreement, either new or used car, that you have to register your vehicle, and it comes as a complete shock that this somehow turns into an ordeal,” Cocco said.

The class-action lawsuit alleges Carvana is a repeat offender and has engaged in a pattern and practice of fraud and deceit harming numerous consumers.

As far as the new complaint by the state of Florida, Carvana has several options for how it responds, ranging from a settlement to requesting a hearing to dispute the allegations.

We reached out to a Carvana spokesperson by phone and email on Tuesday and have not yet received a response.

About the Author:

Tarik anchors the 4, 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. weekday newscasts and reports with the I-TEAM.