Consumer Complaints and Reviews
This company has discriminating and unethical practices. They do not honor their agreement. I ordered a vehicle 13 weeks ago. They stated they will honor the price and placed an order for me. I waited, and they did not deliver. When I contacted them, they told me that they will find a vehicle for me at another place because of the back order. They will split the difference of the items that I did not order. All the numbers were agreed upon on 12/19/2011. They located the vehicle and brought it to the shop.
Tuesday (12/27/2011) morning came and we agreed on everything and a pick up time in the evening. I drove my 60 year old mom to help me pick up the vehicle thinking they will honor their agreement. When I was there to pick up the vehicle, they increased the price by $350. I was not able to pick up the vehicle after almost 2 hours of wait. The following day, Wednesday (12/28/2011), they told me that they will honor the original price they told me. Then they changed the price again and increase it by another $836 and increased the interest rate by 2%. The owner told me that was the price or we will not be doing business.
This is bad business practice. I'm Asian and they are playing games with me. It would not be as bad if they just tell me that they will not sell the vehicle from the first price, but instead they wasted people's time. The worst thing was having my mom come all the way from Massachusetts and then they started to play games like this. They have no respect for customers or elders. They have no problem wasting peoples time to earn more money.
We left the dealership proud owners of a brand new Rondo along with our signed and completed sales contract and loan papers in the amount of $16,627.50. We thought all was well, until we received our loan bill in the mail from Bank Of America on 8/25/2009. We noticed that the monthly payment had gone from $321.47 to $331.48. A difference of $10 more per month for 60 months or a total increase of $600.00 over our signed contract.
We immediately notified Bank of America and asked why the amount was different than what our signed contract stated. Bank of America employee, George at @ Ext.2451, informed us that his papers showed that the $331.48 is what we signed for. We faxed our contract over to him as he requested. We received a faxed copy of what was on file with Bank of America on 8/26/2009. We found that that Mr. U.'s dealership submitted another Retail Sales Contract to Bank of America with different numbers and forged signatures! The amount financed went from $16,627.50 to $17,145.50, a difference of $518.00.
My husband contacted the dealership and talked to Mr Ronnie H., the General Manager. Later that same day he stopped at the dealership to show them the papers. Mr. H. asked for a copy of our Wilmington Trust Simple Annual Rate Conditional Sales Contract security agreement as they no longer had a record of it. He informed my husband that their accountant had shredded it. My husband requested Mr. H. to have the owner contact us.
Mr. U., owner of Autoteam DE, called us the next day 8/27/2009. He informed us that his accountant was doing us a favor by signing our names to the contract. He told us that Bank of America would not accept the Wilmington Trust Simple Annual Rate Conditional Sales Contract that the accountant had us sign. So, he printed the right one and forged our signatures and sent it in. We had also questioned this form as well, with the accountant before signing. We commented, "Oh, our loan is with Wilmington Trust, our last car loan was also with them." The accountant responded, "No, see towards the botton left of the form, the creditor is Bank of America." We trusted his explanation and signed the Wilmington Trust form as he told us to. After all this is what they do every day, right ?
Now, we still have the altered amount on the contract. The $518.00 is similair to error that we found in the calculation of the Delaware State Transfer tax, prior to signing. We noticed the tax amount seemed high, so we questioned it. The accountant stated that the rate was 3.75% of the sales price. After checking the calculation he corrected the Delaware State Transfer tax in his system to $738.00 and then printed a new contract for us to sign.
This is the contract that we left with. Mr. U. claims that this additional $518.00 on the forged contract was a "computer glitch." He claims that when the accountant went back to reprint the agreement for Bank of America, the computer spit out the amount. Now, I am not a computer genius, but I do know that the computer prints out what you put in it and before you exit a program, it asks if you want to save the changes. If this was an error / glitch, then why isn't the additional $518 in the Delaware State Transfer Tax line where it was charged originally! It is our belief that the accountant, Mr. F., intentionally added this amount back into our contract.
Anyway, Mr. U. never once said, this should have never happened. This is unacceptable business behaivor and I will make sure that my employee is punished and that he will never do this again. In his phone conversation and in his e-mails he merely dismisses the whole ordeal as a mere incident. He offered us 2 years or 30,000 miles of maintenance on the car if we signed another contract right away. And when I reminded him that a crime was committed and his employee should be punished, he told me that his employee was doing me a favor and saved me a trip. I told him that if he was not going to punish his employee for this criminal behavior, that I would call the Attorney Generals office. He responded that the Attorney Generals Office wouldn't do anything since he was still honoring our original agreement. All we had to do was come in and resign and pretend like nothing happened here. We advised him that we were not comfortable signing anything as we were concerned about having two loans outstanding with Bank of America.
On 9-2-09, Mr U. e-mailed me to let me know that once he explained everything to Bank of America, that the invalid contract was cancelled by them. He reminded me that since Bank of America cancelled the contract, he needed a new one signed ! We told him that before we did anything further that we would need something in writing from Bank of America, which states that they did indeed cancel the altered and forged contract.
Feeling uneasy and violated, my husband went down to the Wilmington Police Department on 9-2-09. He made them aware of the crime that had been committed and told them that we wanted to file a police report. Since we could not read the accountants name on any of the forged documents, Officer D. offered to go to the dealership with my husband to get the accountants name. Once there, Officer Derbyshire suggested to Mr. U. that he try to resolve this with my husband or we would press charges.
At this time, Mr. U. again stresses to my husband the urgency of getting a new contract signed. He went on to tell them that he paid off the Bank of America loan on 8-28-09. He showed my husband and Officer D. the postal slip showing he sent a check to Bank of America paying off the invalid loan. It is at this point, that we begin wondering what to believe.
Earlier in this same day, Mr. U. was e-mailing us stating that Bank of America cancelled the invalid contract on 8-28-2009 and now he is telling us that he paid off the invalid contract ! We once again tell Mr. U. that we need proof that we are no longer liable under this invalid contract before we do anything else with him.
At this point we begin to wonder, what is really going on. Why would a bank accept payment on a forged, altered and invalid contract? Is that even legal? Wouldn't that inflate the value of loans processed by the bank? Does someone get paid a bonus or commision on this invalid loan? And given the latest financial status of the banking industry, it concerns me that this is how they handled the whole situation. When we questioned George at Bank of America, we were told that it was all taken care of and that they were very good at what they do there. And, we shouldn't be concerned as we were no longer liable under the contract.
We asked about Bank of Americas policy for auto delaers that submit invalid contracts and again we were told that we shouldn't be concerned as it was forwarded to their Corporate Fraud Department. We asked for a contact in that department and George refused to give us one. We asked to speak with his boss. George became annoyed and told us we would have to wait 20 minutes to speak to his boss. After about 5 minutes George came back on the line and asked if we were still there. He then transferred us to Mr H., at 714-. We were again told that we need not concern ourselves, as Mr. U. is their customer !
On 9-9-09, we received a fax from Mr. U.'s dealership on Bank of America letterhead confirming that Bank of America no longer had an interst in the 2009 Kia Rondo and the lein in the amount of $17,145.50 was released on 9-8-09. We also received in the mail a congratulations on paying off your loan letter from Bank of America. These documents confirmed that Mr. U. did in fact pay off the loan and that Mr. U. was lying to us in his e-mail dated 9-2-09, when he stated that Bank of America cancelled the invalid contract.
At this point we were reluctant to do business with his dealership due to the lies and deceipt that continued to go on. We indicated that we were still not happy with the fact that no action had been taken on his behalf to punish Mr. F. and that we felt his offer of free oil changes on the car for 2 years did nothing but minimize what transpired here.
On 9-11-09, we tried to end our relationship with Mr. U. completely by telling him that we wanted to return the Rondo. We asked him to reimburse us the $3500 we now lost from the Government program since we could no longer trade our clunker in at another dealship under the CARS program since it was over. We would then use the $3500 as a downpayment on another vehicle from a different dealership. On 9-14-09 he refused our offer. He told us that if we did not want the car from him, that he would unwind the CARS transaction and the $3500 would be lost from the government. Or, we could come in and sign under the original terms and conditions agreed upon. Either way, he needed an answer by the close of business on 9-16-09, or he would turn this over to his attorney for collection.
Unsure, of what our rights were in this matter, we contacted Detective Michael L. of the Wilmington Police Fraud Division, 302-. After Detective L. met with Mr. U. and his attorney, we all decided to meet one last time to try and settle this. Detective L. met my husband and I at Mr. U.'s dealership on 9-24-2009. We once again asked Mr. U. if he had taken any action against Mr. F. to ensure that this will not happen again. Mr. U. stated once again the he did not feel that anything wrong was done here. When we asked about the $518 that his company attempted to steal from us, he replied that it would have been caught once they reconcilled the books at the end of the month.
Now, I do have have some accounting background and I am wondering how Mr. U. came to that conclusion. Wouldn't this mistake have been found at the time they received payment from the bank, that is, if they posted the valid sales agreement that we really did sign? The check would have been for $518.00 additional. And, if they posted the invalid, altered and forged contract, how would they know that is was different from the original signing if they shredded the original loan contract. We asked to see the original Wilmington Trust loan document that we signed. Mr. Huffner could not produce the original. He only had the copy that my husband gave Mr. H. on 8-27-09. Clearly, in my opinion, Mr. U.'s retention of records are also questionable.
It is at this point that Mr. Uffner gave us an ultimatum. He informed us that we had two choices here. First, we could return the car and he would unwind the CARS transaction and we would lose the $3500.00. Mr U. was well aware that we did not want to lose the $3500 rebate. It was the primary reason we came in to buy a new car and the only reason we were still trying to resolve this with his dealership. Or, we could sign the contract under the original terms and receive free oil changes for 2 years and an additional $750 rebate that Kia was now offering on the Rondo. But, we would also have to sign an agreement stating that we would not sue or press charges. And, in order for us to receive financing from Bank of America at the same rate, we would also have to sign a form stating that we were not under any duress.
Now, I am not sure how Mr. U.defines duress, but in my book, using the $3500 Government CARS program as leverage to get us to sign a legal contract with conditions that we do not agree upon, constitutes Duress. And, with that being said, we did not sign a contract. Mr. U.'s dealership came to our house to get the Rondo and returned our clunker on 9-25-09. We are now ineligible to particiapate in the CARS program due to the crime that has been committed against us by Mr. U.'s dealership.
And, although we have been informed that The Delaware Attorney Generals office does not like to get involved with consumer disputes involving car dealers, we have since moved forward with the filing of a police report (30-09-080060), through Officer D. and Detective Mike L. of the Wilmington Police Department. It is our hope that the laws written to protect us will be enforced and that violaters of that law will once again fear the consequences for breaking it.
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