A volunteer in Chicago claims that her client, a 65-year-old woman with dementia, was given a GMAC auto loan for a new 2007 Pontiac, even though she only makes $900 a month and has no driver’s license. Now the car has been repossessed and the car lot is saying she owes them nearly $8,000.
Here’s Kimberly’s full letter:
I am a volunteer for Catholic Charities and my new client Sandra recently went into Grossinger Auto in Chicago, IL to buy a car. She was approved for a brand new 2007 Pontiac with all the options available by GMAC. She makes $900 a month in social security, has had several strokes so she does not have a valid license, and is in credit card debt up to her eyeballs. She is a 65 year old women who also suffers from Dementia.
GMAC approved her loan even with her bad credit rating! I believe the scam is working. Sandra lives in public housing and there is NO way that she has the credit to get a new car. Yet, GMAC gave her the money to do so.
One month after she failed to make her payment they repossessed the car. Now they say she owes $7,995.80 for the difference of the car and what they got for the car at auction. I have tried repeatedly to get a hold of someone who could explain to me their loan process but was hung up on. They have not responded to my complaints to the Better Business Bureau. I also went to Grossinger Auto and asked how they could sell this woman a car and they also slammed the door in my face. What a creative way to scam!!
Well, “creative” is a pretty polite way of putting it, Kimberly. Forget the BBB—our readers have pointed out time and again that they rarely do any good in these matters. We can’t give legal advice, obviously, but if your charity organization has some sort of legal counsel then you should go talk to that person. We can’t imagine the loan can be considered valid if what you’ve listed is accurate.
You should also contact the Illinois Attorney General’s office. They have a special section on their website dedicated to protecting senior citizens. Call their toll free hotline at 1-800-243-5377 or 1-800-964-3013 (TTY).
Kimberly emailed us an hour ago: “Thanks for the tip. I just got off the phone with their office and they are taking the case!”