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I'll start by saying I LOVED my 2013 Volt. I leased it for 39 months and 12K miles per year. Loved the whole lease agreement arrangement, and returned the car at the end of 39 months in January, 2016 with 12K FEWER miles than I was entitled to put on it, and in pristine condition. A couple of months before the lease was up I called to check in on how the extra plan I purchased that was supposed to cover any excess wear and tear worked, just in case there was an issue with its condition. At that time I learned that I hadn't been enrolled into the excess wear and tear plan, but in some other plan. When I visited the dealer to turn it back in, I asked the dealer guys what happened with the $638 they charged me for an excess wear and tear plan. They said they weren't sure, but that it wouldn't matter because the car was in such great shape and had so few miles that there was no way I would face any charges that needed to be covered. I then went about my life as usual, and eventually purchased a Jeep Renegade, but I've still got my eye on the Bolt. This week, while working to refi my mortgage, I found out that Ally has reported me to a credit agency for an unpaid $211 on the Volt. I couldn't believe this, since they still hadn't returned my $550 security deposit. Even if for some reason I owed a small balance that I was unaware of, that should have just been deducted from the larger amount they owed me, or so I thought. Well, it turns out that whichever entity it is that makes the official determination on the wear and tear (NOT the dealer) decided that the car had almost $800 in excess wear and tear, even though according to the material they send you before your lease ends with the circle to measure any scratches or dings, my car had no damage that exceeded those guidelines. They kept my $550 security deposit, and the $211 is the remaining amount they claim I owe for this damage. Since I didn't pay this $211 (because I was unaware they were charging me for it), they had the nerve to report me to the credit people, which has lowered my credit score. I've finally tracked down what happened to my $638 I spent to get an excess wear and tear warranty. It was used to purchase a "Term Care Select" Contract with Fidelity Warranty Service for 36 months. Note that I leased the car for 39 months, not 36, so it's bizarre that they would have sold a policy for a shorter length of time than the lease. This policy covers mechanical break downs, and provides roadside assistance and rental cars when the car is being repaired, all of which already came in the Volt warranty for the first 36 months, as well as some minor and inexpensive things that aren't covered by the B2B warranty, like wiper blades and brake pads. Oh! And it covers replacement of the car's battery, which made me laugh out loud when I read it. I have no idea why this company would agree to cover the cost of a Volt battery, and I suspect that they probably never intended for this product to be sold to Volt lessees given the huge financial exposure it would give them if something went wrong with the Volt battery, as opposed to a "normal" car battery. But more importantly, I don't see why anybody would pay $638 for 36 months of coverage on a 39 month lease for pretty much just wiper blades and possibly brake pads. (BTW- I never needed anything done on the car in terms of repairs other than the few recall fixes they did.) I think it's bizarre that they'd even be allowed to sell this sort of plan to a Volt lessee since it doesn't seem to offer more than maybe $200 worth of coverage in those first 36 months. And assuming that I wanted to cover the remaining 3 months on the lease, what they sold me didn't even apply to those last 3 months.

My questions for this group are: (1) Can somebody think of a reason that this Term Care Select plan would make sense for a Volt lessee? (2) What recourse do you think I may have for the fact that I paid for something I didn't want? (Note that they never sent any paperwork or a policy number to me. I did receive those materials with the circle to assess damage, and I thought that was from the excess wear and tear people until January, when I learned that it was just from Chevrolet and everybody got that material. I'd like to get my $638 back if it isn't going to be used to cover the BS excess wear and tear costs they're charging me. (3) What recourse do I have with Chevrolet or Ally or whichever entity it is that determined I had excess wear and tear? I never received notification that they (whoever they are) made this determination, so I was never given info on how to contest their finding with my own photos that show what great condition the car was in when I returned it. (4) As for the damage to my credit report, I figure I have to just pay this to get it off my record ASAP. (5) Do you have any suggestions for getting them to reimburse the amount they are charging for the excess wear and tear, assuming that I can prove that they were wrong about it? I worry that once I pay them the $211 to get it off my credit report they'll never reimburse me for it, much less return my $550 security deposit.

Thanks in advance for any ideas you have. I hate it that after all those years of true happiness with my Volt, I'm now left with this awful taste in my mouth.
 

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First and foremost, lesson learned, read what you sign and ensure you keep your phone numbers/addresses up to date with your lenders (if you already didn't)...Your best odds are to talk the Chevy dealership's General Manager and see if he can help...Probably can't directly, but perhaps he'll offer you a sweet discount off the Bolt which is far more likely scenario...

To get it off your credit report ASAP you're going to have to pay...It's called a pay for delete, must get in writing, tell the collections agency to snail mail you a letter that if you pay the $211 in full they will immediately remove it...Even after it's removed it can take a month or so for it to fall off your credit report...
 

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Unfortunately it seems you got taken advantage of. These "Warranties" are often sold to people that don't read the coverage document, and the salesman doesn't know himself, or does know and keeps the details to himself. Caveat emptor unfortunately :(
 

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On the excess damage issue, if that were me I would definitely be working through my dealer, Ally, whoever to get all my money back and demand an apology. That kind of stuff enrages me. If my car was in the condition stated as acceptable AND also had much less mileage, I would make sure they give me back all my money and even try to get more to compensate me for my trouble and the credit mark. You may even consider small claims court, sue for $2,000, i.e. the money you're owed plus some to compensate for the credit mark, and if they don't show, a judgement is automatically entered in your favor.

On the plan that seems pointless, sometimes they have a feature that lets you get a full refund if the plan is never used. You may want to look at that. I agree it seems pointless in a Volt. But to the exposure you note about the high voltage battery, they really have no exposure at all. The way these extra pay services work is that they cover anything that warranty doesn't cover FIRST, so the reality is that they really have no exposure to anything in those first 36 months.
 

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You may even consider small claims court,
Probably not an option since most Ally leases have a clause for arbitration. Mine did. Although I never had to test this out.
 

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Probably not an option since most Ally leases have a clause for arbitration. Mine did. Although I never had to test this out.
Great point, I had not considered that. Well, then I'd go through arbitration if they are not responsive. Bottom line, the principle of the thing would drive me nuts, and I wouldn't let them get away with it (easily). ;)
 

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Before you get too far down the road fighting all this, do a gut check on whether it is worth your time. It is not all that much money, and it will definitely be a lot of time and aggravation. The easiest fix is pay it off and focus on fixing the credit report so it does not remain as a ding. Then chalk it up as a lesson to watch the paperwork more closely in the future.
 

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Another Ally horror story. Your dealer did you no favors when signing you up and you didn't do your homework. Avoid Ally.
BTW, when I turned in my pristine leased '13 I had my sales rep do a complete walk around for condition, plus verifying the presence of the "charger", spare tire kit (unused) and owner's manual. Did you know that there's a window for lease turn-in starting on the lease expiration date and extending for a whole week? I didn't and having turned in my car the Friday before the Monday due date, Ally had the gall to try to charge me an "early return fee" amounting to hundreds of dollars. The utter gall of it all. My dealer said "ignore it" and in time Ally just went away. Awful, awful company.
 

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Before you get too far down the road fighting all this, do a gut check on whether it is worth your time. It is not all that much money, and it will definitely be a lot of time and aggravation. The easiest fix is pay it off and focus on fixing the credit report so it does not remain as a ding. Then chalk it up as a lesson to watch the paperwork more closely in the future.
Pretty much what I saying...But if the OP does indeed want a Bolt EV, even getting the dealer to agree to sell you one at invoice or $500 over would still "net" a more than the $761 that was lost and save a lot of time and headaches...Just pitch it to the general manager, if you don't want do a Bolt EV at invoice you will move forward with the long battle legal with Ally which means your dealership will be involved...Then pay the $211 for the "pay for delete" and enjoy your new Bolt EV whenever it arrives...
 
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