On December 3, 2007 I and my husband came to the Paul Burns Auto Center to inquire about purchasing a vehicle. We came there, because my husband's friend Denis Gockman, who was working there at that time as a salesperson, told us that they have a car that he knew we have always wanted-Lexus ES 300. When we came there, we found out that Lexus ES 300 that they had is not exactly what we were looking for.This was the car with the old body style and we wanted Lexus with the new body style.
While at the dealership, we were demonstrated a pre-owned 2003 Lincoln Navigator, bearing identification No. 5LMFU28R93LJ05872. When we expressed interest in purchasing the vehicle, the sales personnel advised us that the vehicle was not involved in any car accident, had no history of problems or title concerns, and was free of defects or conditions, hampering its use, value and safety. In reliance upon these representations, we agreed to buy the Lincoln Navigator.
Thereafter, our salesperson completed and we signed an Installment Sales Contract for the vehicle. As we began using the vehicle on the daily basis we encountered a serious malfunction that prevented us from the possibility to use the vehicle for its intended purpose-driving. Within two months of the purchase, the vehicle's engine failed to start several times and the vehicle was towed two times. On December 18, 2007 when we could not start the vehicle, it was towed to Anzor's Auto Repair, Inc. Mechanics at Anzor's Auto Repair were able to temporarily fix the problem and start the vehicle, however, the initial cause of the failure was not determined.
Within the same week, we took the vehicle to Eric's Alarms for the second opinion, they still could not determine the cause of the above-mentioned problem. In the first week of February of 2008, I and my husband were coming back from vacation. Our flight was arriving to Philadelphia International Airport. When we arrived around 2 A.M. and tried to start the vehicle to drive home from the airport,it failed again. That night, it was towed to Anzor's Auto Repair. Within approximately two days, the vehicle was towed from Anzor's Auto to Paul Burns Auto by a toll truck provided by the dealership.
When we contacted the dealership and expressed our disappointment with the car and our concern regarding safety of the vehicle(we have three kids, so safety is our top priority, we were immediately offered the swap of Lincoln Navigator with another vehicle of our choice. The representative of Paul Burns Auto, who seemed to be very friendly and willing to help us, said "No problem!" and then, asked if I would be interested in Lexus ES 300 with the new body style, which was expected to be delivered to the dealership within "couple days". Since Lexus was the car that I wanted to buy initially, I said "Yes!". Then, the same person promised to contact us as soon as the above-mentioned Lexus ES 300 is delivered to the dealership and is available.
Approximately in the middle of February, I received a phone call from the dealership. They said that the Lexus ES 300 is there and I can come and "take a look" at the car to see if I like it. On February 23, 2007, we arrived at the dealership and were met by a salesperson "Bill Blythe", who demonstrated us the car and took us for a test drive. I immediately fell in love with the car and expressed my interest in exchanging the Lincoln Navigator for this Lexus. At that point, we were introduced to "Aziz" who worked there as a "manager". Then, Aziz asked us about our income, how much we could pay in monthly payments, and what type of "monthly payments" we could afford. As the result, we negotiated with Aziz a monthly payments of approximately 485.00 dollars a month. Then, we were asked to wait while the paperwork was being "printed" and "finalized". Later, Aziz explained the terms of the sale and documents and gave them to me for signature. I remember signing several documents and as Aziz told me, Retail Installment Sales Agreement was among these docs.
When I signed the papers, I was very excited and asked Aziz whether the transaction was complete and in return, Aziz assured me that the deal is finalized and the car-Lexus ES 300 belongs to me. However, he said, he could not give me copies of all the signed documents because the finance manager was not there. He just gave me some paper, which he called a "pink slip". He said that the rest of the documents, will be abailable for pick in couple days and promised to call me and let me know when I can come and pick them up.
When leaving, I asked Aziz regarding the Lincoln Navigator. He said, "Don't worry about that! You don't have to make any payments for the Lincoln anymore. We'll take care of it". Thereafter, Aziz shook my hand, congratulated me with the purchase of Lexus ES 300 and gave me the keys. On February 23, 2007 I drove Lexus ES 300 home. On February 25, 2008 I purchased Auto Insurance for my new car. I put two child car seats in the car and started using the vehicle on a daily basis, considering this car belonging to me and my family.Withing two weeks following the above-mentioned event, I still did not get a phone call from the dealership.
One day, I discovered that the car needed minor repair (there was some problem with windshields). I decided to take it to the dealer hoping they might help me. I called them first and asked if I can stop by for them to take a look at the car and at the same time, finally pick up my documents. They told me that I can "stop by anytime". When we came to the dealership, we were met by Bill Blythe, the guy who originally showed us the vehicle. He told us that we could leave the Lexus for mechanics to fix it. When I asked him about documents, he said that Aziz had the papers and since he was not there at the moment, we would have to come back. He told us that the car will be ready in "couple days" . He promised to call us and notify us that the vehicle is fixed and documents are available for pick up. However, within one week, no one called us from the dealership. I started getting worried. I did not have any means of transportation, I could not go to work or drive my kids to a doctor. I tried to contact them by phone several times but for some reason no one could help me except Aziz who was never "available' when I called. I left several messages and still no answer.
In about three weeks after I dropped Lexus at he dealership, Aziz finally called me back. He apologized and said that there was a problem with financing of the Lexus ES 300. He also said that I can not pick up "my" Lexus unless I put down payment or find a co-signer. He said that somehow, since the day of purchase of Lexus, my credit score significantly dropped making me ineligible for the the financing.
On the next day, I and my father traveled to the dealership. At the dealership, we were met by "Peggy", who worked in the dealership's "finance department". "Peggy" repeated again that we could not get possession of the vehicle, because the financing of the Lexus "did not go through". She also told us that several financing institutions refused financing of the Lexus ES 300, as my credit score significantly dropped since the day Aziz took my application on February 23 of 2008. In addition, she told us that the reason for this downfall in my credit score was my failure to continue making monthly payments on Lincoln Navigator. I was shocked. I expressed my frustration by arguing that on the day of performing the exchange of Lincoln Navigator with Lexus ES 300, I was assured by Aziz that the deal was complete and Lexus ES 300 belongs to me. Thereafter, Aziz who was present during this conversation, promised to "work out another deal" for me only if I bring in additional down payment, find a co signer or both. When my father agreed to cosign for the financing, we came to the dealership again. Peggy asked him to provide his social security number, his income and employment information. Later, I was again assured that the dealership "will try to do its best" and "everything will be in order" as soon as my father's information is verified and he is approved as a co-signer for financing of the Lexus ES 300. I asked aAziz again if I should resume making monthly payments on the Lincoln Navigator. He repeated that I SHOULD NOT pay for the Lincoln Navigator. Peggy and Aziz promised to call us back "within two days".
Within another week, when we still did receive the phone call, I and my husband called the dealership several time to inquire the status of the "new deal". Aziz and Peggy seemed to be unavailable. Within the same period of time, I and my father started receiving rejection letters from credit companies. Sometime in the middle of March, when I finally reached Aziz, I was told that my father was not approved as a co-signer and i have to bring a down payment and agree on higher monthly payments in order to keep the Lexus. When I refused to put down payment, I was offered to chose another vehicle of less value. By that time, I was stressed out and exhausted with this game physically and emotionally.
On March 19, 2008 I sent a complaint letter addressed to Paul Burns Auto Center. Within couple days, I received a phone call from a person who introduced himself as "Paul Burns". Paul Burns told me that there is no way I could take possession of Lexus ES 300, because the vehicle was "not available anymore". Then, Paul Burns again promised me that they would be able to approve me for another vehicle. After I agreed to consider another vehicle, I was promised that the dealership will contact me as soon as I am approved. When, in the middle of April, I still was not contacted by Paul Burns, I turned to Kalikhman & Rayz, LLC for a legal advise. An attorney from Kalikhman & Rayz told me that I have a case and that he will file the legal complaint. At the same time, he sent an initial notice letter to Paul Burns Auto with an effort to work out a pre-litigation settlement. I and my father went to Honda dealership where he was able to lease a car for me under his name. On or about April 16, 2008, when I came home from work, I found the Lincoln Navigator at my driveway.
Right now, I am stuck with payments for two cars. One of them-I use (leased on my father's name), another-Lincoln Navigator($430.00 a month), standing in my backyard.
Even though my attorney promised me his legal assistance, I recently found out that no legal action was taken on his behalf at this point regarding this matter.
I can not explain with words what I and my family went through since the time I decided to deal with the Paul Burns Auto. My situation now is terrifying. Recently, my family's income was significantly reduced due to the economic downfall and there is no way I can pay for the Lincoln Navigator that I don't use. I strongly believe that Paul Burns Auto is responsible for all the financial and emotional damages they caused myself and my family by their actions. Please help!