How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask RONB-ESQ Your Own Question
RONB-ESQ
RONB-ESQ, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 357
Experience:  Right of Way Manager at Access Midstream Partners, LP
90553395
Type Your Consumer Protection Law Question Here...
RONB-ESQ is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My auto finance company mistakenly deemed my vehicle a total

Customer Question

My auto finance company mistakenly deemed my vehicle a total loss. In Sept 2015 an Insurance Company requested a 10 day pay 0ff and letter 0f guarantee f0r a vehicle in North Carolina. I live in TX and my vehicle has never left the state. When the insurance company requested the letter per the VIN my lien older sent my info instead of the info on the vehicle that was involved . Here are the issues:
1. I work for that insurance company and I just so happen to work North Carolina Claims. Luckily for me I never touched that claim or knew any of the people that did so I wasn't accused of trying to defraud my employer.
2. I spoke with my lien holder in Sept and everything was resolved so I thought. on dec 28 I received a letter showing that my warranty was paid off since my vehicle was a total loss. The warranty company sent a copy of the cashed check by my lien holder
3. I requested that they put their mistake in writing which I finally received on Monday just in case my employer would ever question me
4. They finally reinstated my warranty and now they are saying that I owe more money than I originally did before they even made the error.
Is there any legal recourse for their negligence in this matter?? I am now being told that they aren't sure why the amount is higher and they keep saying its interest. I have paid my note on time during this debacle
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 10 months ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney. I welcome you to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. The question and response may be viewed by other parties as noted in JA’s terms of service. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

Do note that a phone call is not required and we can continue here just typing comments back and forth.

Do not be concerned with short delays in my response to you.

Please understand that if I ask you for additional information, you are NOT charged again and our communications are NOT timed. If you would like a phone call let me know and I will arrange it.

I type slow, but including some time to research certain questions you will see my answer below in 5-10 minutes.

Regards,

Ron

It sounds like you have been through a confusing mess. I am in Texas if that matters. So I fully understand are you saying that your vehicle was purchased with an extended warranty. That due to negligence by the lien holder (they transposed VIN's??) the vehicle was processed as a total loss and that same lien holder was paid in full. Then you brought this to their attention and they put things back in place, but claim your original extended warranty costs more therefore your monthly payment has increased? I am sorry if I missed something so please correct these facts if I misunderstood your question.

Ron

Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 10 months ago.

Quick additional question was the lienholder the insurer for this vehicle as well? Was this a lease or purchase new or used?

Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 10 months ago.

I am sorry I read to fast in reading again I see that the insurer contacted your lienholder for information on another vehicle and they mistakenly gave them your vin and then the insurer sent them payment that I am presuming included an amount towards the extended warranty? When you say they put their mistake in writing do you mean the lien holder?

Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 10 months ago.

I am logging off for the night now, but you are welcome to reply here and I will see it when I am back online and respond around 1:00 PM CST tomorrow.

Regards,

Ron

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Ok let me back up because more has happened since I requested the question.
1. Sept. State Farm called GM Financial requesting LOG for vehicle with a claim.2. GM Financial sent my LOG by mistake to State Farm instead of the proper LOG3. I was notified by both companies that my car was a TL and called for clarity since my car was never in accident4. I was able to get everything cleared up or so I thought in Oct. with both companies. No payment was ever sent to GM Financial by State Farm for the payoff on my car5. Oct. 29 GM received payment from warranty company for cancellation since car was declared a TL. GM never contacted warranty company to inform them that TL wasn't accurate and to stop process of cancellation5. Dec. is when I caught wind that this happened since my warranty co. sends me a letter and a copy of the cashed check. I call GM and they start playing blame game against State Farm. Did I mention that State Farm isn't my insurance company they are my employer and the claim in question is a North Carolina claim. I am licensed in 7 states one being NC and I normally would touch that claim. I'll get back to the investigation that ensued due to potential fraud ( SF had to ensure that I wasn't trying to defraud the co. And get my car paid off)6. After getting clarity on how this happened it is true that GM is the one that in fact messed up. SF requested someone else's info and payoff and GM sent mine. I was able to obtain this in writing from GM and finally get a reversal of my warranty but now what I owe is incorrect and I keep being told that interest is the reason why. On paper it looks as if since Sept. Only $200 total has went to principal out of the $1760 I have paid. I have never been late or missed any pymts due to their mistake.7. I spoke with a rep yesterday as a final plea to get this corrected. In gathering my ppwk I noticed errors a lot of them to be exact. On my very first statement there was a pymt for 416.65 and that which brought my loan down from 20309.52 to 19892.87. The very next month I made a pymt for 440.59 and my balance after that pymt was 20254.52. I questioned how my balance went up and again the run around with no answer. I went deeper into the interest and noticed that my interest has flucuated a lot. When questioned how my interest for the month of Oct. was only 75.10 instead of what their formula for interest equated to I was told that was an error and someone charged me less in interest than what they were supposed to.8. As you can see this is all over the place and I don't want to continue this loan with them if I can't get an answer on how my balance has increased, interest calculations, and most of all the piece of mind of my private info not being given to just anyone. I believe that since this I have been passed up on promotional opportunities due to my name being intertwined in the claim that I never touched. That was my saving grace that I never worked that claim and that I don't know the people that touched the claim but I was asked multiple times in clarity as to how I got intertwined in a State Farm claim within the states I am an adjuster for. My employer truly investigated me for fraud all because a mistake by my lien holder.Is there anything I can do. I am literally sick of playing games with them and want restitution. Was there any privacy laws broken? Please help I am now at a desperate point because I won't ruin my credit by just dropping the car off at the dealership but I don't want to continue paying them and getting shafted in the end.
Expert:  RONB-ESQ replied 10 months ago.

I am sorry you are having to go through this and due to some body's negligence you have had your integrity challenged, been anxious and lost sleep. It is hard for me in these times to share news that is maybe not what you expected. I have reviewed your facts back to the beginning and the only thing I really see that stands out as a cause of action in Texas is negligence by GM. So you know there is a book on my shelf called "Texas Causes of Action" and unless you have a recognized cause of action then you can't bring a successful lawsuit. Here it is quite evident that GM Finance was negligent in their handling of the VIN, but this is really more related to the negligently providing it state farm than to them simply mishandling the information. By that I mean if they had left documents in the trash that had that information on it I am unaware of any Texas cause of action you could bring. This is where it is "not right" and "not fair", but perhaps legal. If they mishandled your social security number there is a federal act that covers that, but typically any lawsuit is brought by the government to force compliance by the company.

To have negligence you have to show that the party owed you a duty and that as a result of their failure you were damaged. I can see you proving a case of negligence here, but you damages may be somewhat limited. You would be entitled to a loan that was handled correctly so any over payment would be damages. The fact that you were investigated by State Farm would be devastating to anyone trying to advance in the company, but unless there are other facts that show that GM played some role in it, it comes down to state farm conducting an internal investigation. If GM had made some statement to state farm that you were involved then you could sue GM for defaming your character.

I think it might be worth meeting with a local consumer law attorney to see if the claim is worthwhile. Note I don't discount the fact there is a claim, but would want you to weigh that against the cost of litigation and more importantly the time involved (9-18 months typically). I would recommend you go here http://www.consumeradvocates.org/ to the National Association of Consumer Advocates and search for a consumer law attorney near you. You can likely meet with one for free and it would be a good way to have a fresh set of eyes look over the problem. It would be helpful if you presented it to him/her in the same fashion as above with the bullet point and brief history.

In the alternative I would see if I could demand that GM put you back in your original position and then contact a different bank or credit union and see if you can get them to refinance it so you are no longer dealing with GM. I am sorry I can't give you the exact answer you may have been looking for and as damaging as something like the state farm investigation is I recognize that you want to hold someone accountable for what you went through.

If you have not already you should take a copy of the letter from G.M. to your employer's HR department and ask them to include that within any investigation file they maintain on and that after both they cleared you and GM admitted fault you would believe that you advancement options are limited in any fashion based on this negligence you didn't ask for by GM Finance.

Regards,

Ron

Thank you in advance for providing me positive feedback based on the legal accuracy of my answer and my professionalism as that is the only way that I am credited for the time spent answering your question by the website. Do note that after leaving positive feedback you are welcome to reply here with any follow up questions for free.

Related Consumer Protection Law Questions