Throughout the course of this assignment, the issues affecting the outcome of this case will be analyzed. The type of legal claim that is being brought forward will be identified and the way in which the law will be applied will be evaluated. The end result will be established and all relevant information will be discussed.
The issues that need to be addressed here are whether deceiving an elderly woman into purchasing a car constitutes elder abuse, whether the dealership did in fact trick Sweeney into purchasing the car and whether the dealership sold a car as new when it was used. When these questions have been answered, a clearer view of the strength of Sweeney’s case will be attained.
Financial exploitation of the elderly is a form of elder abuse. It is defined as the improper or illegal use of somebody’s resources via undue influence, fraud, coercion, theft or deceit (Oregon Department of Human Services). This is the most relevant type of elder abuse to Sweeney’s case. Oregon law states that a company can be deemed to have engaged in unlawful trade practices if it has employed an unconscionable practice to sell goods or failed to deliver part or all of goods as promised (Oregon State Legislature, 2012).
If what Quenelle alleges is true then the dealership’s treatment of Sweeney fulfils the criteria for unlawful trade practices because supplying documents indicating that a used vehicle is new is an unconscionable practice. Claiming that a car is new when it is used also entails failing to deliver goods as promised, as the promise was that the vehicle had not been owned before. This would mean that the dealership was also guilty of elder abuse, as it would have used deceit to gain use of Sweeney’s money.
If it can be proven that the dealership misrepresented the car as being new when it was in fact used then Sweeney will win the case. However if not then she will be likely to lose, as no deceit or failure to deliver on goods as promised will have taken place. This case hinges upon proof that documents existed stating that the car was new. There should be records of these documents, which will prove whether or not Sweeney is telling the truth.
- Oregon Department of Human Services. Definitions of Elder Abuse and Neglect. Retrieved from http://www.oregon.gov/dhs/spwpd/pages/abuse/definitions.aspx
- Oregon State Legislature (2012). Trade Practices and Antitrust Regulation. Retrieved from http://www.leg.state.or.us/ors/646.html