New York’s attorney general is suing these two dealerships for selling unwanted and bogus anti-theft products.
imagine your surprise when you go to sign the final documents for your new car and you see a $2,000 charge tacked on as an anti-theft option you didn’t even want in the first place. It looks like these two dealerships earned the nickname stealership as according to FI-Magazine on their report earlier last week (Dec. 21, 2017) two New York-based dealerships are being sued again for continuing to sell window etching and charging customers, many of them without knowing. Check out what vin etching looks like in the photos I’ve put below.
— Chattanooga Police (@ChattanoogaPD) December 9, 2017
— KVUE News (@KVUE) November 19, 2017
New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman says he’s been working for over two years prosecuting claims like this with money being paid back to the owners to the tune of $19 Million thanks to 29,000 individual cases. Presumably, the offending party is sent settlement papers with instructions to 100 percent refund the car buyer or face charges.
As for these two particular dealerships, what Schneiderman found out was unfathomable. After he received one aforementioned complaint after one customer got charged with a $1,995 bill for window etching she did not authorize, Schneiderman decided to do a little digging to see what he could find. In total, he found more than 1,000 individual similar complaints from these two dealerships with charges ranging from $129 up to $3,998. Some car buyers drove off dealerships without a window etching even taking place.
Window etching is where your car’s unique VIN number is etched onto any glass of your car, typically on your windshield and windows. Car thieves will often strip a car of literally everything, and since windows typically have no VINs, a higher profit for selling good glass to a repair place can be had. By placing your vin on the glass, a car thieves profits are reduced and some thieves won’t even consider stealing your car.
Whereas some dealerships charge around $100 for the service (which is reasonable with your approval) you can easily do a DIY etching using a kit for less than $20 or some places will hold events where they’ll do it for free.
To charge someone without them knowing is clearly stealing. You can count on the NY Attorney general to take each complaint from these two dealerships seriously.