AVIS/BUDGET another false claim

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Mar 3, 2018
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#1
We rented a car from Avis/Budget at Sacramento airport 10/12/2017 to 10/21/2017 using Costco and Fastrack checking.
• The car was an almost-new Buick LeSabre with 1091 miles on odometer. We drove 178 miles.
We returned the car with no visible damage. The car was inspected by their agent on return with no damage

Today (3/3/2018) we received a letter stating we owe a claim of $4097 comprising $3588 vehicle damage + $150 admin fee + $358 Diminishment of Value. The line for Loss of Use is $0. The letter states this will be their last contact with us or they will refer the file to collections or to a lawyer unless we pay.

The letter states "Our investigation has concluded that the vehicle your rented from Budget at......was damaged on 12/29/2017 while in your possession from 10/12/2017 to 10/21/2017".

• Note the stated date of damage is 78 days after end date of rental.
• Note there is no description of the damage.
• The absence of Loss of Use fee seems to imply there was no mechanical damage that prevented subsequent and immediate rental, so I am guessing they mean to hit us with cosmetic damage.
• Any mechanical damage would surely be covered by warranty on this new vehicle?

How to proceed? Do I contact:
• Sedgwick
• Budget
• Or both?
Thanks.
Rosbif
 
Last edited:
Mar 3, 2018
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#4
We contacted Budget via email who declined to discuss the matter with us and referred us back to Sedgwick Claims Management Services. We sent them a registered letter refuting their claim and asking for proof. They should receive it this Thursday. Not sure what to do then .
 
Mar 3, 2018
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#6
Thank you Neil. I think I will need to practice your recommended 3 P's and exercise a little Patience. Sedgwick, who manage Budgets claims, should receive the letter today. I think if we give then 1 week or so to respond, we can then contact a Budget executive depending on how they respond. Does this seem reasonable? I do not want to create too much confusion by creating a storm of multiple cross-communications.

We also contacted our insurers but until we have some details of the alleged damage there is little they can do. But, given that the letter from Sedwick literally says the damage occurred in December, and we returned the vehicle in October, I do not see how they can sustain a claim for damage.

I'll keep this updated as we proceed.

Thanks
 
Mar 3, 2018
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#8
OK, we sent them an email on 12th and they replied the next day:
"Thank you for contacting the ABG Executive Office. We have reviewed your e-mail below. We have contacted the Claims Manager to investigate this matter further. When we have received a response from their office we will advise you of the resolution. We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused. We appreciate your patience during our investigation. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to be of assistance to you."

10 days have now passed without response and I was preparing to write/escalate to the next level again. Today we received letter from Viking collection agency saying the matter has been passed to them and we have 30 days to dispute the claim or they will obtain judgement against us. Clearly no-one from Budget has intervened in their claim/collection process and now we are getting concerned at these strong-arm tactics. Help please!

I won't say what I really feel
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,426
11,882
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#10
OK, we sent them an email on 12th and they replied the next day:
"Thank you for contacting the ABG Executive Office. We have reviewed your e-mail below. We have contacted the Claims Manager to investigate this matter further. When we have received a response from their office we will advise you of the resolution. We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused. We appreciate your patience during our investigation. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to be of assistance to you."

10 days have now passed without response and I was preparing to write/escalate to the next level again. Today we received letter from Viking collection agency saying the matter has been passed to them and we have 30 days to dispute the claim or they will obtain judgement against us. Clearly no-one from Budget has intervened in their claim/collection process and now we are getting concerned at these strong-arm tactics. Help please!

I won't say what I really feel
Move up to the nest executive.
 
Likes: VoR61
Mar 3, 2018
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#11
Carrie, Neil, thanks for your prompt replies and yes we will dispute with Viking and escalate but where does it get us when Budget do not seem to be intervening in their agent's claim collection process as we requested?

Should we pass the claim to our insurers for them to sort out or reserve that for later?
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,426
11,882
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#12
Did you damage the car? Was there a police report? I don’t think your car insurance covers a claim for damage after you returned the car when you had no problems with it.?

Our thread in how to dispute these almost always works. In all the years we have had it I can only recall two instances that weren’t dropped by using our thread. But it often had to go up to the Executive level to get done.

Please follow our recommendation in the thread-?communicate with the executive offices only. Move up the executive ladder one a a time once a week.
 
Likes: VoR61
Mar 3, 2018
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#13
OK thanks no there was no damage to the car, and they have offered no evidence to that effect. Thank you for your encouragement; I am naturally concerned that a judgement will be made before Budget agree to drop the claim, which will obviously make things all the more frustrating. When you say "communicate with the the executive offices only" do you mean not dispute the collection with Viking in writing, but only dispute it with Budget? I was going to formally dispute it with Viking to comply with the legal process, and and advise the Budget executive of this in my communication with them.
Bedtime here in Chicago so will pick up again tomorrow.
If I were a suspicious kind of guy I would be tempted to say that out-of-town airport rental customers who use their own insurance are being targeted as easy pickings, as they are unlikely to come to court to defend the action...

Thanks once again
 

Carrie Livingston

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Jan 6, 2015
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#16
Awesome! Our process generally works. Hopefully, they've gotten on to us and know it's just easier to drop the claim. Thanks for coming back and letting us know the outcome!
 

mmb

Verified Member
Jan 20, 2015
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#17
Budget/viking claim against you is the most ludicrous one I have ever heard. I’m thinking I might have just ignored the letter since it made no sense at all. I would have assumed they would figure it out soon.
Additionally, after they sued you and obtained a judgement, it seems like you could have sued all of them for false claims and judgements, including the judge! Can’t anyone even read and comprehend anymore?
You had to jump through hoops and spend untold amount of time on their blatant mistake.