A Canadian couple who were turned down
dozens of times when they tried to buy a new car in the U.S. are
challenging what they regard as illegal discrimination.
Rhonda Chancey and Allan Coombs, a married couple from
Newfoundland, said more than 80 New England dealerships, including
61 in Maine, refused their business.
Chancey and Coombs filed a discrimination charge with the Maine
Human Rights Commission and plan to sue five car companies.
Their lawyer, Stephanie Jazlowiecki of Topsham, says the
companies, including General Motors, Ford and Chrysler, seek to
maximize profits by not allowing Canadians to take advantage of
their strong dollar and buy new cars in the U.S., where prices are
Jazlowiecki said she plans to file similar complaints in New
Hampshire and Massachusetts.
Chancey and Coombs finally did buy a car, a 2008 Pontiac
Torrent. A relative in New Hampshire purchased it for them at a
local dealership and then sold it to the couple.
The lawyer said that even though they had to pay transfer tax
and sales tax twice, the vehicle was still cheaper than it would
have been in Canada.