May 29, 2012
Jefferson City, Mo. -– Attorney General Chris Koster said today that his office has reached a settlement with Dealership Warranties, Inc., a company that is now doing business as National Vehicle Protection Services, to restructure the way the company sells vehicle service contracts. Dealership Warranties will also pay $18,500 to the state in restitution and costs.
The consent judgment against Dealership Warranties prohibits deceptive sales techniques in the sale of vehicle repair coverage. The judgment also requires the company’s sales people to describe during sales phone calls the details of the written contract. These important terms and conditions include information about:
“Missouri law says consumers have a right to see a written service contract and agree to its terms,” Koster said. “Customers who purchase vehicle repair coverage by telephone often later realize the significant limits to coverage in the written contract. It is important for Missouri consumers to protect themselves by carefully reviewing vehicle service contracts to make sure they contain the provisions promised.”
If Dealership Warranties completes the contract in a telephone transaction, it is required under the consent judgment to record the transaction electronically and to mail the written contract within 3 business days.
Dealership Warranties will continue in business under the injunction issued today by St. Louis County Judge Barbara Wallace, while using the name National Vehicle Protection Services.
The case has been a joint prosecution by the Attorney General and the Department of Insurance.
“A new state law protects consumers by requiring an insurance license for most sellers of these extended service contracts,” said Missouri Insurance Director John M. Huff. “I encourage Missouri consumers to check with our department to verify that sellers are properly licensed before buying a service contract.”
Dealership Warranties has applied for a license with the Department of Insurance. Consumers can check the license of a service contract seller by calling the department’s Insurance Consumer Hotline at 1-800-726-7390 or visiting insurance.mo.gov.
Consumers who suspect fraud or have complaints about businesses selling motor vehicle extended service contracts should contact the Department of Insurance. Consumers may also report service contract fraud to the Attorney General’s Office at ago.mo.gov or by calling the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection hotline at 1-800-392-8222.