Published on May 24, 2022.
Vehicle Service Contracts are what we commonly think of as after-market warranties for your car in case major repairs are needed. But several people say a local company that sells those has stalled on its promises to pay.
The 7 Investigators have been digging into Infinite Auto Protection, and now the Attorney General is stepping in as well, directing them to stop what prosecutors call “unlawful business practices.”
No one wants to be stuck with a pricey car repair bill. That’s why Jon Caldwell wanted a Vehicle Service Contract for his Cadillac SUV.
Caldwell says he did a ton of research before spending $2,411 on a Vehicle Service Contract from Romulus-based Infinite Auto Protection.
“They had, at the time, some very good reviews,” said Caldwell.
But Caldwell says when he needed Infinite Auto Protection to pay a claim back in 2019, everything fell apart.
“They refused to pay for the diagnostic fee,” said Caldwell. “After going back and forth with them several times, I finally got fed up and said ‘OK I’m going to cancel the contract.’”
Caldwell says the company agreed to send him the balance of his contract, but despite countless emails and calls – he says he couldn’t get a response.
“They essentially ghosted me,” said Caldwell.
After months of waiting, Caldwell says Infinite Auto Protection, which is also known as Opulent Marketing, Inc., entered arbitration with him. The arbitrator sided with Caldwell, calling the contract “unconscionable” and awarded Caldwell $1,501.97. But Caldwell says they still did not pay.
“It’s frustration more than anything,” said Caldwell. “They refused to honor their very own contract. In fact, they refused to provide services that are clearly spelled out in their contract.”
“I was devastated,” said Alan Pfeffer. “I was incensed.”
Pfeffer says he also did his homework, reading reviews and checking for lawsuits, before buying an Infinite Auto Protection Vehicle Service Contract for his Audi.
“Thoroughly enjoyed it, the car was beautiful, it was a joy to get into. Until the turbo chargers failed,” said Pfeffer. The breakdown left Pfeffer stranded on a New Jersey highway.
Pfeffer says the repair bill was $11,893.71.
“I was shocked to find out how much it was going to cost. And the next day I got a call from Infinite, and they said ‘we’re not paying the claim,’” said Pfeffer.
Pfeffer says he too tried to cancel his contract last May.
“So they were supposed to send me a check for $2,100.00, which hasn’t come,” said Pfeffer.
So Pfeffer contacted the Michigan Attorney General, who says they’ve received more than 125 complaints since 2019 about Infinite Auto Protection.
The Attorney General just sent Infinite Auto Protection a Notice of Intended Action, directing them “to immediately cease and desist from engaging in… unlawful business practices.”
And that’s not all.
The 7 Investigators have learned the State of California also issued a Cease-and-Desist order to Infinite Auto Protection, saying the company sold Vehicle Service Contracts to consumers there without a license.
And the owner of a BMW in Florida won a $26,258 default judgment against the company.
Also, a couple in Colorado tried taking Infinite to court in Oakland County Circuit Court to enforce their $35,624.02 default judgment, but no one from the company responded to the court, prompting the judge to hold them in civil contempt.
They did not respond to our attempts to talk to them at their Romulus office or on the phone.
We even traveled to the address designated in their state paperwork to accept legal service for them, but that business just referred us to another company in Idaho who refused to contact the owners.
After those visits, when you search for Infinite Auto Protection online, Google now shows them as permanently closed.
“People are losing their money and getting no return for their investment,” said Better Business Bureau President Melanie Duquesnel.
Duquesnel says the Eastern Michigan BBB has received 336 complaints about Infinite Auto Protection. They also downgraded the company to an F, and they’ve been actively working with the Attorney General.
“To get prosecution, to potentially get resolution, and hopefully money back to those consumers who have been defrauded,” said Duquesnel.
“It’s unconscionable that they can do this and get away with it for so long and to so many people,” said Caldwell.
Jon Caldwell eventually got his arbitration award, but it took months. According to the Attorney General’s notice to the company, many people are still owed a lot of money.
Original article: https://www.wxyz.com/news/local-news/investigations/stalling-out-on-promises-michigan-company-accused-of-not-honoring-vehicle-service-contracts