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dealership totalled my boat

Old 01-10-2014, 08:54 PM
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Default dealership totalled my boat

Hopefully somebody here will have some insight for me.
I purchased a brand new boat from a dealership 2 weeks ago. I paid with a check from my credit union.

I took delivery last week because it was getting rigged. When i did the delivery ride, i noticed that the twin motors were cavitating. The person from the dealer said it was normal. Keep in mind, its my first new boat, and first twin engine boat.

I take it home, a few days later, on my day off i notice it was worse. I hit the gas, the boat barely moves and the RPM is going up.

I called the dealer, and told them my problem. After complaining a bit, they offered to pick it up from my house 2hrs away.

Thursday 1/9/2014
The dealer personel picked up my boat at 10:45 am from my house. At 12:00pm, the service manager called me to tell me i have so sign a standard release form so they can work on my boat. He calls me 3 times to remind me i need to get it done. I get to a fax machine at 2pm and he sends it to me, and i send it back. I didnt think anything of it, i just wanted my boat fixed.

At 6pm the general manager calls me and tells me there was a accident and my boat is totalled. My first question is to make sure the driver is ok. He tells me they will replace it for me no problem. Now it all adds up why the service manager is rushing me to send in this release form?

Friday 1/10/2014
I talk to the general manager at 12pm and he tells me i might have a problem because i told him i didnt have insurance on the boat yet.

Why would i have a problem, when i was 200 miles away from the accident scene, it wasnt my vehicle towing it. I didnt put insurance on a non functional boat.

I am far from rich. I've been waiting a long time to get a new boat, and now it looks like there is a chance i just put myself $60,000 dollars into debt with nothing to show for it.

I will find out on tuesday what they plan on doing, after their insurance adjuster comes out to them. I want to give them the benefit of the doubt and make this right, so i haven't contacted my lawyer yet.

I can't sleep or work with this hovering over me, anybody have any good advice?

Last edited by loyski; 01-10-2014 at 09:15 PM.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:05 PM
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Contact your lawyer first thing in the morning. Make him aware of what's going on and ask him how you protect yourself.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:08 PM
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I think you should have had insurance on it when it was titled and delivered to you, if not just for replacement value, but liability to protect you. Regardless, the dealership had possession of the boat and it was presumably being towed by them, at which time their insurance or a third party should cover the accident. I think perhaps the dealership is trying to avoid filing a claim with their insurance carrier, which if true, is a sneaky, down-low, rotten, dirty shame. Also, I think you should carefully review that release form the dealership asked you to sign. It seems they were rather aggressive trying to get your signature on a document, and subsequently the accident occurred? Sounds fishy to me.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by phillyg View Post
I think you should have had insurance on it when it was titled and delivered to you, if not just for replacement value, but liability to protect you. Regardless, the dealership had possession of the boat and it was presumably being towed by them, at which time their insurance or a third party should cover the accident. I think perhaps the dealership is trying to avoid filing a claim with their insurance carrier, which if true, is a sneaky, down-low, rotten, dirty shame. Also, I think you should carefully review that release form the dealership asked you to sign. It seems they were rather aggressive trying to get your signature on a document, and subsequently the accident occurred? Sounds fishy to me.
Yes Philly, i didnt realize it at the time. He made it sound like it was standard procedure. The last thing on my mind was the accident. I was extremely fishy. I'm not disclosing the dealership until i know what their intentions are. I just want what i paid for.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:19 PM
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What he said. Not sure what the release says, but I can't imagine that it would be legal for them to ask you to sign a release after they know the boat was involved in an accident. Presumably the release would only be in force as of the date and time it was executed (doubt that it would be retroactive). Contact your attorney. Have him send a letter and let them know you will not go down without a serious fight. They will back down.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:20 PM
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I'd contact a lawyer now and also secure a copy of the police accident form with time of the incident to compare to the time of your fax as potential proof of dirty-dealing by the dealer if that is the case. If they pressed you to sign a release form after the accident they caused or were involved in (& you were not) and did not disclose the fact of the accident and loss, a lawyer should be able to advise you whether there is proof of fraud to hopefully help protect your interest.

Hopefully the dealer will do the right thing but now is the time for legal assistance., particularly in light of the dealer's actions you describe that do not bode well for honest, ethical action going forward.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:26 PM
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Since I bought my new boat this past summer and it has been worked on numerous times by the dealer, I never once had to sign any sort of "release form" so they could work on my boat. Further, I have no idea why if it was so important to have signed, the dealer didn't bring a copy for you to sign when they picked up the boat.

With all of that said, I would never leave the dealership with that boat unless I had an insurance binder in place.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:27 PM
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How did you leave the dealership with a $60,000.00 boat and no insurance? If you financed it the lender would require insurance before issuing payment to the seller. If you paid cash and had no insurance... WTF were you thinking?
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:28 PM
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Go get the fax transmission report and hope the date & time were set correctly on the fax machine.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:36 PM
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Originally Posted by halfwaythere View Post
Since I bought my new boat this past summer and it has been worked on numerous times by the dealer, I never once had to sign any sort of "release form" so they could work on my boat. Further, I have no idea why if it was so important to have signed, the dealer didn't bring a copy for you to sign when they picked up the boat.
That is a great point. You would think they would do that. I just speculating right now. I really hope I'm wrong. Is it bad to wait a few days to see if they make good on this? If I get a attorney involved, it would require a lot of time and money. And a chance I would lose. Even though I'm the victim, I'm sure this company has a heck of a lot more money and patience than I do.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:39 PM
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Originally Posted by patokapirate View Post
How did you leave the dealership with a $60,000.00 boat and no insurance? If you financed it the lender would require insurance before issuing payment to the seller. If you paid cash and had no insurance... WTF were you thinking?
Honestly I didnt even think about it. I startes shopping insurance the day before, but I was waiting until it was operational. I would understand if I crashed it, then shame on me. But I was 200 miles away.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:42 PM
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Originally Posted by TTaxi View Post
I'd contact a lawyer now and also secure a copy of the police accident form with time of the incident to compare to the time of your fax as potential proof of dirty-dealing by the dealer if that is the case. If they pressed you to sign a release form after the accident they caused or were involved in (& you were not) and did not disclose the fact of the accident and loss, a lawyer should be able to advise you whether there is proof of fraud to hopefully help protect your interest.

Hopefully the dealer will do the right thing but now is the time for legal assistance., particularly in light of the dealer's actions you describe that do not bode well for honest, ethical action going forward.
They will not give me any Information regarding the accident. Apparently the employees of the dealership were instructed to not discuss it with me at all.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:44 PM
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Sucks man but you'll be fine.

They are on the hook and don't let anyone tell you otherwise, especially them.

Fight them if they try to push back.

The only thing you need to say is, where's my money or where's my new boat.

Good luck (not that you need it),

J
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:48 PM
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Just curious, you seen pictures of the boat yet?
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:53 PM
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Originally Posted by halfwaythere View Post
Just curious, you seen pictures of the boat yet?
They havent told me anything except it is unrepairable. Apparently, it ended up off the trailer on the pavement. Thank god nobody was hurt.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Esuomm1 View Post
Sucks man but you'll be fine.

They are on the hook and don't let anyone tell you otherwise, especially them.

Fight them if they try to push back.

The only thing you need to say is, where's my money or where's my new boat.

Good luck (not that you need it),

J
Thanks for your optimism, I'm really hoping they do good. If not, I'm telling everybody on these forums who they are.
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Old 01-10-2014, 10:01 PM
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As mentioned lawyer up asap and stop discussing the details here on the internet. ''Anything you say can and will be used against you'' and the internet is forever.

Seems like a pretty cut and dry deal. Time stamp on the fax, along with phone records (your cell phone) of calls from dealership should give an investigator a pretty reliable timeline. It's obvious to anyone reading this that the accident happened prior to you getting the demands for your signature.

I don't know how the credit union released the check without proof of insurance, that's a head scratcher there.

Good luck, I am sure you will come out ok on this.
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Old 01-10-2014, 10:02 PM
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Plenty of accident attys on THT... But it was in their possession (traffic accident?) it sounds like their responsibility to me. Not sure why there's confusion. The dealership should be carrying an umbrella policy as well, I assume...

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Old 01-10-2014, 10:06 PM
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exactly what I would do.
Originally Posted by TTaxi View Post
I'd contact a lawyer now and also secure a copy of the police accident form with time of the incident to compare to the time of your fax as potential proof of dirty-dealing by the dealer if that is the case. If they pressed you to sign a release form after the accident they caused or were involved in (& you were not) and did not disclose the fact of the accident and loss, a lawyer should be able to advise you whether there is proof of fraud to hopefully help protect your interest.

Hopefully the dealer will do the right thing but now is the time for legal assistance., particularly in light of the dealer's actions you describe that do not bode well for honest, ethical action going forward.
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Old 01-10-2014, 10:15 PM
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I find it hard to believe that your lender allowed you to leave the lot with no coverage specifically because of things like this.....I would imagine a large % of boats are damaged anywhere but the water like while being towed or on the hard or being placed into a multistack or sitting in a drive way with a tree branch house fire or stolen

you might contact your lender and see if there was any policy in place through them that you were paying for and did not know about because of your lack of other coverage.....I know if I let insurance slip on my house the lender (mortgage company) is immediately going to hit me with a very expensive policy to make sure they are covered

also I would be looking into legal fraud since it is about positive that the accident occurred before the release was signed which is why there was the panic by the dealer to get it signed.....I can think of few of any legal forms that would be retroactive for something like this

in most states liability damage on autos covers the damage that you do to others property while driving......this INCLUDES if you happen to be driving someone elses car......most insurance companies will try and deny this, but I know it is the deal in the state where I live because I know someone that was driving a friends car and wrecked and their liability insurance (the person driving) covered the friends car that they were driving.......so there is a better than decent chance that the liability insurance the dealer has on their haul truck covers your boat even being towed by them because it was damage to others property caused by them while driving that vehicle.....I suppose there could be a waiver on their policy for hauling property, but still in that case since the other waiver you signed after the fact should not be in effect since it was signed after the fact you can probably still try and file a claim with the liability insurance of the haul truck since that truck caused damage to your property

also people often believe that verbal contracts are not enforceable and that can be true, but you need to make sure and remember the exact words the dealer told you if it was "replace" that does not mean REPAIR AND RETURN.....that means replace and if this heads to court go for a full replacement if that is what was stated

it would be tempting to go get the dealer to sign something stating they would REPLACE this boat, but at this point with a 60K boat, your lack of insurance and the potential for insurance/contract fraud on the part of the dealer getting the release signed after the fact (and now not wanting to discuss the accident) it is probably best to go ahead and lawyer up and bring all all available guns especially the contract/insurance fraud aspect and start moving towards filing a claim with their liability insurance on the haul truck......liability insurance covers the damage YOU DO TO OTHERS PROPERTY and they damaged your property

PS next time get insurance and this would all be handled up on for you and it is probably over 50% likely that your boat will be damaged NOT on the water running or not.....and it would be much stronger in your favor for insurance fraud and contract fraud if you had your insurance company being told to pay by the dealer when the dealer is using a release signed after the fact......you would probably have a new boat now
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