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Andrea, Esq.
Andrea, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 11264
Experience:  25 yrs. of experience in employment law, real estate and business law, family law, criminal defense and immigration.
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Car Lease Return

Customer Question

A BMW dealership approved me for a car lease which I signed and drove off. However, BMW Financial (the lender not the dealership) will not approve the deal unless they can run my Experian report. When they ran my 3 credit bureaus at the dealership, they were only able to see Transunion and Equifax and not Experian because it's frozen but decided to approve me anyways. After a few days they said I would have to return the car if I didn't unfreeze my Experian so I decided to return the car. Upon returning the car they told I'm obligated by law to unfreeze my Experian and even if I don't they can send the deal to a different lender using the other 2 credit bureaus. I left the car and the keys at the dealership not sure on what's going to happen. My questions are: 1) The lease contract states "BMW Financial and Financial Services Vehicle Trust" as the lender and no one else, can they switch the lender without me signing another contract and/or running my credit again? 2) Do I have a legal obligation to unfreeze my Experian credit? 3) Can I just walk away from this lease?

Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Andrea, Esq. replied 10 months ago.

Dear Customer, My name is XXXXX XXXXX X would like to help in any way I can,

 

I am sorry you are having this trouble with BMW,

 

 

You asked,

 

"1) The lease contract states "BMW Financial and Financial Services Vehicle Trust" as the lender and no one else, can they switch the lender without me signing another contract and/or running my credit again?

 

Answer 1

 

If your Agreement with the BMW dealer specifies that the financing will be from "BMW Financial and Financial Services Vehicle Trust as the lender, then the dealer cannot unilaterally change or amend the Agreement by substituting another lender without your written consent;

 

 

You also asked,

 

2) Do I have a legal obligation to unfreeze my Experian credit?

 

 

Answer 2

 

You do not have a legal obligation to "unfreeze" your Experian Credit Report, If, however, the language in the Agreement you signed with the dealer states that in order to obtain BMW financing, a credit report from the three major credit bureaus is required, then although you do not have a legal obligation to "unfreeze" your Experian Credit Report, you will be in default of the Agreement by not providing access to all three of your credit reports;



And, lastly, you asked,

 

3) Can I just walk away from this lease?

 

 

Answer 3

 

Without knowing what the Agreement states with regard to the dealer's ability to access your credit report from all three credit bureaus, it would be impossible to say whether you could walk away from this lease. Whether or not you can walk away from this lease depends on what your obligations are under the Agreement, specifically access by the dealer to your credit report from all three credit reporting bureaus. If the Agreement is silent on your obligation to give the dealer access to your credit report from all three credit reporting bureaus, and the dealer does not provide financing through BMW with the two credit reports he already has, then you could probably walk away from this lease. It all depends on what your obligation is as outlined in the Agreement,

 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Please let me know if I can be of further assistance,

 

Please be kind enough to rate Excellent Service" so that I receive credit for assisting you,

 

Bonus and Positive Feedback on survey is very much appreciated,

 

ANDREA

 

Customer: replied 10 months ago.

Thank you Andrea for your quick reply.


The agreement does not mention anything regarding credit reports so I'm assuming I'm clear on that.


What's really concerning me is I cannot figure out what "Financial Services Vehicle Trust" is exactly since that would be the only other possible lender. Can a Trust be used as a lender?


Assuming you cannot use a trust as a lender, how would you proceed to prevent this deal to get approved by a different lender?


They will not give me a "unwinding agreement" and are insisting that they can get another lender.


It seems to me that they are just trying some scare tactics, otherwise why would they ask for the car back instead of just using a different lender? Wouldn't you agree?


 


I understand you cannot make a decision for me but can you please give me your opinion based on your experience with this situations.


 


Thanks!


 

Expert:  Andrea, Esq. replied 10 months ago.

My sincerest apologies for the delay, but the site is experiencing technical difficulties and I did not receive notification that you had replied until now.

 

 

"Financial Vehicle Services Trust" is not necessarily a "Trust" and I doubt that it is a trust. Many banks and financial institutions have the word "Trust" in their name, like "Bankers Trust", or "Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company"

 

Whether or not you can walk away at this point will depend on the Agreement you signed and what kind of financing they could get you.

 

If they could get you the same financing as you would have received with BMW Financial, then there would be nothing for you to object to and you would have to take the vehicle back. If the Agreement you signed with the dealer does not state a maximum interest rate, then you would have to take back the vehicle, regardless of interest rate. If, on the other hand, the Agreement states a maximum interest rate, then you would only have to take back the vehicle if the financing were over the percentage stated in the Agreement,

 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Please let me know if I can be of further assistance,

 

Please be kind enough to rate Excellent Service" so that I receive credit for assisting you,

 

Bonus and Positive Feedback on survey is very much appreciated,

 

ANDREA

 

 

 

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