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I recently bought a car financed with a Auto FinanceCapital One, the dealer forgot to cash the check in time, so 3 months passed and they finally call me saying that they need to get the car back or finance it again thru them or Capital One. I try w/them first but their terms where not even near to what Capital One was offering, I tried CO right there n there and was approved with even a better deal than the first. However, I told them that the check was coming in a few days and they needed to wait a few more days. They told me that they needed to consult if I was allowed to take the car with me, which I was. I’m very upset about this whole deal and thinking about returning their car and going with a different dealer. However, I’m not sure how to go about this, since the registration is under my name. Do you have any insights into th uhh s situation. Thank you in advance!

If they forgot to cash the check then it’s their problem. If you return the car you will probably get tagged with a repossession. I think the court would be on your side in this instance but the whole thing sounds like a scam to me. Something stinks to high heaven here. I would call and talk to a real manager at Capital One…not a flunky.

Sounds like a scam to me too. They “forget” to cash your check, then force you to refinance with their own company, which probably gives them a kickback, at a much higher rate.

I would call the state attorney general and report these guys and ask what your legal options are.

I assume in the intervening 3 months you have made car payments to Capital One.

You were approved for financing from Capital One. They paid for the car, and you in turn will pay Capital One what you borrowed from them. Capital One is the legal owner of the car, and you are the registered owner. Capital One has the title to the car. If you default on your loan from Capital One, Capital One has the legal right to come and repossess your car. You’ll notice nowhere here did I mention the dealer. That’s because you have no obligation to them or further business to transact with them. This is between the dealer and Capital One.

Look at it this way. If I buy a car from you for cash, and on the way to the bank you lose the bag of cash, am I obligated to give the car back to you?

I too would file a formal complaint with the attorney general’s office.
I’d also contact a lawyer immediately. You have rights in this and the dealer has to make good on any cost to you that his error caused.

Screw them. Sounds like a pure scam to me.

Who “forgot” to cash the check? The dealer. Whose problem is that (in the unlikely event that it is true)? The dealer’s. You did your part. Let them go whistle.

And as others have advised, a report to the state AG’s office would be in order, even if it might not do much. If they keep hassling you, ignore them. And if they still keep hassling you, sue them, or at least threaten to.

I’m going to disagree a little. The fact that they didn’t cash the check smells, but regardless you still have the obligation to pay for the car with the CO check. So the money is still owed. I don’t think you can just walk away from it. Also in Minnesota, the individual owns the car, and the lender would have a lein on the car. You can’t transfer title without having a lein release from the lender that would be listed on the title as the lein holder, but you still own the car. They have the right to reposess under the terms of the loan agreement, not because they are the owner. Where’s our resident lawyer?

@Bing: If the check was from the OP and it expired, the dealer might possibly be able to ask the OP to issue a new one to replace it. In this case, the check was from CapitalOne, and the OP presented it in a timely way as part of his or her payment for the car. That is not the OP’s problem if the dealer waited too long to cash it. If the dealer wants to try to recover from anyone, it should be from CapitalOne.

You are quite right about the lien held by the lender and who owns the car. In the instant case, there appears to be no issue between the lender (CapitalOne) and the car owner (the OP), and so the dealer has no recourse against the OP.

I agree the issue is between the dealer and CapitalOne. If the dealer persists in bothering you get the Atty Gen of your sate involved sooner rather than later.

Yeah you could be right. Checks do go stale though and it should not be a significant problem to have a new check issued by Capitol One.

To resolve this…just have Capital one reissue the check.

This issue needs to be resolved between the dealer and Capital One. You do NOT own the vehicle…Capital One does. Call Capital One and have them clear up this matter.

@MikeInNH: “You do NOT own the vehicle…Capital One does.”

Absolutely not true. The registered owner (the OP) owns the vehicle. The lender holds a lien on the vehicle (look at your registration or title to see this). Big difference. It’s like when one owns a house and a lender holds a mortgage interest against the property. The property does not belong to the lender. It belongs to the owner, and ownership would revert to the lender only in the event the lien (or mortgage) is enforced through a legal action. This is a bought vehicle, not a leased one, as I understand it.

The registered owner (the OP) owns the vehicle. The lender holds a lien on the vehicle (look at your registration or title to see this). Big difference

True…you do OWN it jointly with the bank. But the bank can take if from you if you don’t follow the contract (aka loan agreement - miss payments, not keeping insurance, accident and don’t get it fixed - and a slew of others).

@MikeInNH: Yes, that is exactly the purpose of a lien – if you don’t adhere to the loan terms, the bank can take the vehicle. It also keeps the title from changing hands until the lender is satisfied. But that doesn’t mean the lien-holder is a joint owner, even if it is in a sense a silent partner with the owner. If the car is used in commission of a crime, for instance, the police will come looking for the registered owner, not the lender.

While I doubt that it’s the case here, dealers have been known to send someone down the road thinking that everything is fine and then call the customer up later with some tale about financing falling through and the deal having to be reworked.
Reworked generally means reworking the numbers more into their favor instead of the customer.

Yep there is no “joint” ownership with the bank with a house or a car. Its called leins and contract law. Remember a carpenter can put a lein on your house for work not paid. He can’t compel the house to be sold like a repossed car, but can hold up the sale until he is paid. But the carpenter does not have “joint” ownership of the house, just a legal interest in it.

Yes, that is exactly the purpose of a lien

I haven’t had a car lean in almost 30 years.

I haven't had a car lean in almost 30 years.

Did your shocks/struts give out on you?

@bscar2: “Did your shocks/struts give out on you?”

Clever, clever!