Policies That Only Cover A Certain Dollar Amount
These amount-based policieswhich cover specific amounts for specific parts and labor, rather than straight-up paying the billsare another version of this gray area. The policy might be great, but if it pays less than market average, you’ll be left on the hook for the balance after your mechanic presents you with the bill.
This is perfectly acceptable, but it can certainly feel like a scam when you’re faced with it. So be sure to read the fine print, and ask before you buy if you can’t find the answer.
Familiarize Yourself With The Most Common Scams
The Federal Trade Commission has a list of the most common scams on its website, which makes it easier to know what you should expect from scammers and robocalls. The extended car warranty scam is the first one on the list, but other common scams include fraudulent tech support calls and imposters pretending to raise money for disaster relief efforts.
The list isnt comprehensive, but knowing what scams are most popular right now is a good way to prevent yourself from being defrauded.
How Do Car Warranty Scams Work
Most car warranty scams are straightforward. A scammer masquerading as a legitimate company, such as a car dealer or insurer, calls you to let you know your car warranty is due to expire.
The scammer then offers you an extended car warranty and asks for your personal information to draw up a vehicle service contract. Many such calls are robocallsthat is, automated calls that churn through many people quickly and that usually feature pre-recorded voicesand are therefore easy to detect.
But, be aware because even robocalls are getting more difficult to detect with technology constantly improving.
Others involve real people who may know a lot about your vehicle and warranty. They may know your name, the make and model of your vehicle, your vehicle’s mileage, and the terms of your insurance or warranty agreements. Most of this information can be purchased online from data collection companies.
The service contracts that these scammers offer typically range from $1,000 to $3,000 and tend to include woefully incomplete coverage, such as coverage of part of the engine rather than the whole. Getting a refund from the scammer rarely, if ever, works, leaving consumers with limited recourse other than filing a chargeback with their banks or credit cards. Vehicle warranty scammers tend to target vulnerable consumers, with senior citizens being their most coveted customers.
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What’s Behind Those Robocalls Anyway
When my last car was two and a half years old, the calls started. Some of them were simply robocalls. Other times, there were real people on the other end of the line. Then there were emails and letters, too. They were insistentfive or more calls a day, for months.
If you, too, are getting these calls claiming to offer you an extended warranty that could save you major money on potential car expensesand if you’re like most Americans, for whom an unexpected $1,000 car repair bill would put a huge damper in your family budgetyou might be wondering if there’s any truth to the calls. Usually, there isn’t.
“Consumers receive phone calls from scammers, some of whom have purchased or acquired data about a consumer’s vehicle to make themselves seem legitimate,” says Kathleen Long, vice president of growth at RepairPal, who has years of experience working with extended warranties. “They inform the consumer that their factory warranty is about to expire which may be true, and then they prompt the consumer to provide personally identifiable information which can then be used to defraud them.”
Robocalls are almost always scams. But what about the calls where a real person is on the other line? “My rule of thumb is, if a stranger is reaching out to you to sell you something that you haven’t asked for, don’t make an immediate purchase,” says Keith Berry, auto reporter at Consumer Reports.
Add Your Number To The National Do Not Call Registry
The Do Not Call Registry is a free list you can sign up for. Its meant to reduce the number of telemarketing calls you receive. Its important to note, though, that this can only reduce the number of sales calls you get. Charities, political groups, debt collectors, and organizations conducting surveys over the phone can still contact you. Levin also points out that this list helps block telemarketing calls, not scam calls.
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How To Deal With The Robocall Car Warranty Nuisance
You should always follow common sense when it comes to incredible one-time offers, and that means that if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Why would someone allow you to extend your car warranty for half the sum you usually pay?
In other words, the best way to deal with such calls is to avoid them. Here are some tips you can use when faced with a car warranty robocall:
- Register on the National Do Not Call List
- Don’t answer calls from unknown numbers
- Don’t engage with the caller
- Don’t follow instructions provided on the call
- Don’t disclose any personal information to the caller
Protect Your Personal Details
Sensitive information should not be discussed over the phone, and no legitimate business would ask you to do that. Lawful robocalls serve to pass information, not extract it from people, so refrain from disclosing any of the following to the caller:
Under no circumstances should you give away such information to an alleged car dealership or anyone else. If the caller hints that they need anything of the above, rest assured that a robocall scam came your way.
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How To Slow Down That Annoying Car Warranty Robocall
How to slow down that annoying car warranty robocall
If you have an iPhone,If you don’t have an Apple,There are several appsThe FTC also suggestIf you have caller ID,
How To Avoid Car Warranty Scams
Extended auto warranties can reduce some of the financial risks of car ownership. Unfortunately, car warranty scams are prevalent. Avoiding these scams can be tricky, but there are a few things you can do to fend off this type of fraud.
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Some General Information On Unwanted Calls
There are many legitimate sales teams that make unwanted calls and scam calls to trap you in buying a car warranty. These unwanted calls take up much of the drivers time. These calls are distracting and disturbing, and some can be dangerous. Some scammers can be very convincing if you are not careful.
There are automated calls that relay same message, for instance, asking you to call back. There are hang-up calls and missed calls, mostly automated, where the car warranty service provider might only want to confirm your number.
Be careful not to attend scam calls from car warranty service providers. Otherwise, you might end up sharing any sensitive details about yourself, or making forced transaction via your credit card.
Extended Warranties And Lemon Vehicles
As mentioned above, generally only the manufacturer or seller of a product can provide customers with a warranty. Most consumer goods come with at least a one-year warranty. Vehicle warranties are often longer, typically lasting anywhere from three to ten years. Lemon laws protect consumers from defects covered by these warranties.
When you purchase a vehicle, the dealer will likely try to sell you an extended warranty or service contract. Such offers might bolster the coverage of the standard warranty, covering maintenance costs and/or extending the manufacturers warranty for a set period of time. In some cases, these add-ons arent worth the cost. Theyre often overly priced to ensure the dealer profits, not to help consumers. But, you can typically negotiate the price of an extended warranty or service contract to make it more affordable. Please also note that if you sell your vehicle and there is some remaining coverage on the extended warranty or service contract that you are entitled to a pro-rata refund for what you did not use.
Additionally, most lemon laws apply strictly to the original manufacturers warranty. So if the dealer fails to repair a defect that never occurred during the original factory warranty, you may have no recourse for action under the majority of state or federal lemon laws. If the defect occurred even once during the factory warranty, federal lemon laws may provide you protection.
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Ways To Avoid A Car Warranty Scam
Filing a complaint with the FCC can result in action against scammers.
Here are some ways to avoid scammers:
How To Find A Legit Vehicle Service Contract
At this point, you might be interested in a VSC but how can you be absolutely sure you arent getting ripped off by a scammer? The easiest way is to avoid the auto warranty robocalls and go directly to the source. Theres no need to take the risk of transacting over the phone when you can visit a legit providers website.
You can check with your preferred local dealer to see if they offer this product or vet online providers by investigating their standing with the Better Business Bureau.
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Donotpay Protects Your Privacy And Finances
Sharing your credit card details online comes with certain risks, and its getting more difficult to tell good and bad websites apart. With DoNotPays virtual credit card generator, you will be able to protect your identity and bank account from cyber scammers.
Whenever you run into a suspicious email or website, generate a virtual credit card and proceed without worries. Our virtual cards also work like a charm if you want to avoid automatic payments after free trials.
Repairs Denied Due To Lack Of Maintenance
This is another common problem that may feel scam-like. The documents that you sign when purchasing an extended warranty don’t just outline what the warranty is responsible for, but what you are responsible for as well. And one of your responsibilities is to maintain your vehicle.
Let me explain another way: Your check engine light starts flashing while you are driving, and your car starts shaking. You pull over immediately, and call for a tow truck. After your car finally gets to the mechanic, you, of course, present your extended warranty. A few hours later, after some extensive diagnostics, your mechanic finds that your engine has a dead cylinder, needing replacement. You breathe a sigh of relief, knowing that your warranty will take care of it.
But, unfortunately, that’s not how things wind up. The insurance company sends out an inspector. The inspector finds that there is significant sludge in the engine, and the oil is thick and dark. The warranty company immediately requests your proof of maintenance, including your receipts for oil change services.
If you can’t produce them, your warranty will reject your claim. Maintenance is your responsibility, and if parts fail in systems that you didn’t maintain per manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations, your policy won’t be of much help.
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How To Stop Car Warranty Calls
The car warranty scammers can be dangerous, so be careful when dealing with these calls. Before, you make the decision, do remember to check the terms and conditions provided in your car warranty insurance agreement.
The calls from scammers can seem genuine and assertive. But they can jolt you. Some scam callers may just want to play pranks on you.
The scam callers may force you to believe that your car warranty has expired, or it has been canceled by the car warranty company. The scammer may tell you to pay a fine or fee to rectify the situation. You are directed to send the payment to a specific account through credit card.
Some scammers assertively state that its in the warranty terms that the driver has to buy an extended warranty before the original warranty expires. if the driver does not buy an extended warranty, then the factory warranty will become void.
Many car owners dont read the details provided in the car warranty service document. You, being a car owner, must know to spot these scammers, and know how to stop calls about car warranty problems.
Are Extended Warranties The Same As Manufacturer Warranties
No, manufacturer warranties are not the same thing as extended warranties. The former is offered by your automaker and embedded into your car purchase. The latter is an add-on that can be purchased at any time from third-party warranty companies.
However, extended warranty is somewhat of a misnomer because it implies the manufacturer will re-up their coverage, which isnt the case. Scammers can exploit this confusion and may try to lead car owners to believe otherwise.
The only situation in which a warranty is truly extended is for a CPO vehicle. Regardless, make sure to check a vehicles buyers guide to see whats covered.
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Don’t Give Out Personal Information
First and foremost, don’t ever give out personal information. Your driver’s license number, credit card or bank account numbers should never, ever be shared with any random caller, for any reason. Make certain to exercise as much caution as possible. These callers are good at what they do, and very convincing sometimes.
If you do find yourself on the phone with a fraudulent company, do these and you likely won’t hear from the warranty provider again:
- Say that you already purchased a policy
- Ask to be put on the Do No Call List
- Block the caller
Growing Trend For 202: Auto Warranty Scam Texts
Numbers show that auto warranty scammers are getting more creative in their attempts to fleece the populace. In 2021, scammers sent 87.8 billion spam texts, up from the 55.4 billion texts sent in 2020.
Experts say this is because more people prefer texts over voice calls than ever before, and the FCCs mandates regarding texts are less stringent than those governing calls.
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How To Stop Robocalls On A Landline
If you want to block robocalls to your landline, you might try registering your landline number with the national Do Not Call list. To register, you can simply call 1-888-382-1222 or 1-866-290-4236 . You can also register at donnotcall.gov.
You may have as many personal phone numbers on this list as you need, including your wireless number.
The national Do Not Call list was designed to stop sales calls from valid companies. Legitimate telemarketers like some extended car warranty companies are advised to check this registry list for numbers that do not want to be offered their products or services through telemarketing. But be advised, the Registry cannot stop calls from scammers who simply ignore this listing.
When you register your phone number on this list, you will have to call from the phone you are registering. There is no cost for this service.
Additionally, political campaign calls and text messages are exempt from the Do Not Call listing, so you will not be able to block these types of calls utilizing the DO Not Call registry method. Unlike mobile phones that require consent to market to their number, robocalls to landlines require no prior content Sellers who have a prior established relationship with the consumer are considered to have prior consent.
You can also report robocalls to ftc.gov or by calling 1-877-FTC-HELP.
How To Stop Scams In Their Tracks
With intelligent solutions, like Hiya Branded Call, you can stop the auto warranty scam before it even starts. Branding your incoming calls is a great way to filter out the spam from the important calls. By projecting your name, logo, and reason for calling, people are much more likely to pick up the phone customers can trust that when they answer they are getting a legitimate business and not another spoofed call.
According to Hiyas State of the Call 2022, 94% of unknown calls go unanswered, but with a proper fraud filter, your customers will feel safe answering your legitimate business inquiries.
Dont let spoofed calls ruin your reputation. With Hiya Connect you can guarantee that your call will come across with key identifying information. Be sure to check out the State of the Call 2022 to stay up to date on the scams plaguing your voice channel.
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