Sunday, March 01, 2009

Kelly’s Korner: Compliance Issues


While many dealerships are struggling to keep their doors open for business, another issue should be addressed. That issue is compliancy with federal regulations. Within 90 days, the extended deadline for compliance with the “Red Flag” rule will be staring you in the eye.

Many of you may be thinking, “We live off the grid. No worries, the FTC does not know us.” That may be true; however your lenders know you. If you are not compliant, they are not compliant. Their reactions can have a more immediate effect on your business.

Lenders will not fund loans after discovering a dealership’s lack of attention to this detail.

What should you do? That depends: are you fighting to remain in business or are you closing the doors May 1? Your reply should determine your course of action.

Many associations have one-day seminars on how to become compliant. Regardless of where you get the templates for the policies, they still need to be customized for your size and scope of business. One size does not fit all.

Additionally, you must do a risk assessment, hold employee education meetings, and incorporate policies into your company handbook. In short, you must create an audit trail of your efforts in becoming compliant.

For those who have read my articles in the past, you know our company conducts these educational seminars. Help is available. The place to begin is for you to take action and place a call. Time is of the essence!

Oregon I.A.D.A. Kelly’s Korner, March 2009, P. 10