On 12/11/12 I filed the following report with the Better Business Bureau. The company has not responded to the complaint at this time and was recently send a 2nd notice from the BBB.
In 2009 I purchased a 1999 chevy cavalier car from Kids Auto on a 42 month loan at 339.00 per month. To date, I have continued to make monthly payments. Kids Auto has in house financing under the name CAR Finance in the same building. They also work closely with Dealin Doug Auto as CAR Finance does all of the Dealin Doug loans. Additionally, Kids Auto clients are referred to the Dealin Doug lots to trade in the car purchased by Kids Auto once the original loan is paid off or close to pay off to "get a better deal on a car and better financing rate". (as if they are doing you a favor).
I have remained current on my account monthly with the exception of a couple deferred payments in Sept. 2012 and October, 2012. I currently owe approx $6,000 on a 13 year old car currently worth $500.00.
In August 2012 my credit score had improved so I decided to try to get rid of the car and use my car payment as a down payment. Car Finance told me I could go to a Moreland, Dealin Doug Car lot and they would subtract $2500.00 from the payoff. The catch was the discounted payoff would only apply to a car bought at one of the Dealin Doug's car lot's only, and not any other dealership. They said that if I went to another dealership they would not reduce the pay-off amount. I told them i did not want to continue a business relationship with them and would go to the dealership of my choice.
Ultimately, I was unable to finance a newer car with any dealerships due to my credit which I believed had improved. I decided to look at my credit report on December 5, 2012 and noticed that in Sept 2012 CAR Finance falsely reported my account as a "Charge off" for the remaining balance.
I disputed this with the 3 credit bureaus and called CAR Finance ask them about this report to the bureaus. I was told to call back the next day and I followed up on (12/11/12) and spoke to another employee who stated that they would not address this issue until they were notified by the credit bureaus and then they would look into it. He went on to say that a payment deferment and payment delinquency were the same as a "charge off".
The employee then asked if i was still looking into trading the car in and I told him that with the "charge off" no dealership would consider financing me. This individual stated that I could still go to Dealin Dougs Dealership and THEY would assist me. At that point I declined and informed him that I would follow through with other avenues to address this issue.
Due to the sequence of events with a dealership that will overcharge people who need special financing due to financial circumstances, I believe the company falsely reported my account as a "Charge Off" to keep me from going outside of their preferred network and to keep me locked into a loan that it creating a outrageous profit for them on a car that has no value.
Additionally, the false report to the credit bureau caused my credit score to tank and is continuing to prevent me from other opportunities that relied on credit.
On 12/20/12 I checked my credit report and was notified by the credit report agency that the Kids Auto "Charge off" has been removed from the credit report. However, it was also during this week that I received a call from my co-signer that a call was made to the insurance company I originally insured the car with for a couple of months.
On 1/7/13 I received a letter from C.A.R. Finance dated 1/3/13 The letter stated that my account is "past due for $6562.34
Following information was contained in letter:
NOTICE OF VIOLATION OF CONTRACT PROVISIONS-
YOUR INSURANCE COVERAGE HAS EITHER BEEN CANCELLED, LAPSED OR CHANGED.
Letter was unsigned!
I immediately contacted my insurance company to inquire about my account. The insurance company notified me of the following information:
1. Insurance is current and up to date.
2. Coverage began when the car was bought and the finance company was notified by mail of coverage.
3. In Jan 2012 there was a 5 week insurance coverage lapsed and the finance company was notified.
4. The insurance lapse was remedied and the finance company was notified again.
It seems apparent that the company is trying to find a way to justify actions that led to the original filing of this dispute and additional information that I have provided.
CAR Finance did not respond to the first notification from the BBB by the deadline. A second notification has been sent and CAR Finance has yet to be notified.
The next step will be to go to the State Dealership Board and have them review my original contract papers on the car and my financing. Additionally, Kid's Auto never provided me with a CAR Fax when I requested it and stated that they do not have to provide one to car buyers. Kids Auto has always had a bad reputation and this company along with all it's affiliated names need to be addressed for the deceptive practices, false reporting, overcharging consumers and taking advantage of consumers financial hardships.