Auto warranty businesses are still on the prowl for new “suckers”, I mean customers. The St. Louis BBB recently put out a warning message about one such company, StopRepairBills.com.
The majority of the 200 complaints the BBB has received surround the issue that consumers feel they were pressured into signing agreements for service contracts that didn’t pay off.
In 2008, then-Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon sued six companies, including National Dealers Warranty (now Stop Repair Bills), for using “misrepresentation and deception” to sell vehicle service contracts to the public. Five months later, Nixon settled that case with National Dealers Warranty, with the company agreeing to pay about $30,000 in restitution to consumers and for the state’s costs in bringing the lawsuit.
In November 2009, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster filed a second lawsuit against Stop Repair Bills, accusing the firm, Gilman and other officers of several violations of state law. The case, amended in November 2010, is pending. Allegations include unlawful telephone marketing practices, selling contracts for unregistered providers and administrators, deceptive sales practices, unlawful merchandising practices, unfair trade practices and insurance fraud. Stop Repair Bills sells contracts nationwide.
“I trusted them,” said an administrative assistant from Glenwood, Ill. Her five-year-old car was repossessed last fall when a contract purchased through Stop Repair Bills failed to pay for thousands of dollars in repairs. She said repairs should have been covered under the terms of her agreement. A claims administrator told her payment was denied because the company could not verify her vehicle maintenance records. She said she supplied everything that was requested. “It has been a nightmare,” said the woman. Her round-trip work commute that took an hour by car now takes four hours on public transportation.
NRRM, which owns Stop Repair Bills, was formed in December 2009 through a consolidation of National Dealers Warranty and Auto Warranty Protection Services. At the time of the consolidation, Gilman was president of both companies. – Source