Another Unsatisfied Consumer: A Horror Story (or Two..or More)

As a consumer lawyer I have the privilege of meeting and helping everyday people try to sort out and resolve vexing problems typically of a financial nature.  Unfortunately I receive numerous calls each week from consumers across North Carolina (and some outside of our beautiful state) about purchases and other consumer transactions gone awry.  Some of the awful scenarios I have been faced with include the following:

  • Used vehicle dealer sells consumer a salvage vehicle without disclosing the salvage condition to consumer…dealer then fails to secure any signed finance agreement for the payments and subsequently repos the vehicle without having proof that the consumer had failed to make all payments allegedly due… to add insult to injury, dealer sells vehicle and keeps client’s personal possessions!
  • Large utility company somehow debits money from consumer’s bank account for over 4 years for an account the consumer did not authorize….
  • Credit card company files suit against consumer outside of the applicable statute of limitations…
  • Consumer seeks small personal loan and signs document he believes is merely placing his vehicle as collateral on the loan only to find out that he had signed over title to the unscrupulous “lender”…..and “lender” never gave consumer ANY money!  Fortunately the consumer never delivered the vehicle to the “lender”…
  • Consumer pays a debt in full and receives written confirmation of the same….creditor sends debt to another collection agency for collection and tells the agency the debt is NOT paid in full….consumer wages an unsuccessful phone-and-letter campaign to get the mess resolved and meets the proverbial dead end..

I sure hope these examples are enough to illustrate the scary times in which we live.  There are still ethical, reliable individuals and businesses.  It just seems it is harder to find them nowadays.  Do your research on the front end and get significant promises and agreements in writing.  Use your instincts and common sense when making decisions on whether and how to deal with businesses.

As a consumer you often have rights and remedies when things go wrong.  If you are having trouble dealing with a warranty (or vehicle service contract…which do you have?) issue, vehicle purchase, debt collection, harassing debt collectors, or some other consumer issue contact an experienced attorney for a consultation to avoid your own house of horrors.


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