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Automotive News Learns How LaFontaine Auto Group Stays Ahead of Increasing Regulatory Scrutiny

Toby Graham /
close up of cars in a row

“How the heck am I supposed to stay on top of all these new regulations?”

At KPA, we hear that question more or less word-for-word (well, substitute “heck” for more colorful language) at least once a day. Nine times out of 10, the person asking is a sleep-deprived manager or F&I department head at an automotive dealership.

Automotive laws and compliance standards—particularly around F&I practices—are no joke. Dealers face a mountain of regulatory requirements compared to what applies to businesses in other industries. In addition to the alphabet soup of consumer finance and advertising statutes at the federal level, there are myriad state and local updates to keep up with. Take California’s new Consumer Privacy Act, for instance. All this plus the fact that agencies are investigating more aggressively than ever.

Fortunately, no dealership needs to navigate the big, wild regulatory world alone. KPA clients can rely on our 350-person team of auto industry experts as well as the compliance platform we’ve engineered specifically for dealers.

For an example of how dealerships are using KPA to stay ahead of frequent changes and vigorous enforcement, look no further than a recent article in Automotive News. The story features insights from one of our clients, LaFontaine Automotive Group, as well as from KPA senior vice president Eric Schmitz.

Arlena Sawyers reports:

“In Michigan, […] dealerships are undergoing ‘frequent’ unannounced state audits, said Marissa Hunt, corporate controller at LaFontaine Automotive Group, of Highland, Mich.

Since about mid-May, state auditors visited six of the group’s 17 Michigan dealerships. Those auditors have the authority to examine every aspect of a Michigan dealership’s business, including its F&I operations. During one dealership audit, for example, the regulators took issue with the placement of required signage where customer service orders are written.

KPA, which counts LaFontaine Automotive among its clients, conducts quarterly audits at the group’s dealerships during which it examines, among other things, how well the group adheres to F&I compliance standards.

For example, one standard calls for screening customers before a sale against a list of people identified by the federal government as terrorists, drug dealers and others deemed as threats to the U.S., so KPA checks the records to determine whether dealership personnel are doing so properly.

Immediately after each KPA audit, LaFontaine managers discuss the results and how each F&I manager can improve performance.”

Read “Remaining compliant as regs change.

For more information about KPA’s auto and auto-adjacent compliance solutions, click here.

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