Yesterday I received a shocking email from USAA stating my chargeback dispute with Ozzi's Automotive went in the mechanic's favor because an error in the transaction didn't occur. The letter states, the "merchant provided documentation no error occurred and the correct amount was charged." In credit card lingo, that's known as a "Chargeback Reason Code 12.5: Processing Error."
I believe the Chargeback Reason Codes applicable to this situation are:
~ 13.1 - Merchandise/Services Not Received
~ 13.3 - Not as Described or Defective Merchandise/Services
~ 13.5 - Misrepresentation
It's like you authorizing an order for delivery of a Samsung 60" Flat Screen Television with $100 Wall-Mount Installation service, but getting a stolen toaster oven that's partially mounted on the wall of your bathroom for $150 (toaster oven cheaper, so increased cost of service).
The whole transaction is seriously messed up on many levels and warrants a chargeback: You didn't agree to receiving stolen merchandise (I spoke with local police, they assume "No VIN = Stolen"), you ordered a TV not a toaster oven (72k mile engine v. maybe 250k mile engine; impossible to verify with VIN scratched off), you paid for an complete install not partial one (not all services paid for were received), and you agreed to $100 installation fee, not $150 (agreed to $1,425 for labor but charged $2,375).
Sure, you authorized the amount they charged you so, "merchant provided documentation no error occurred and the correct amount was charged." Bottom line: You're screwed.
At the moment, that's USAA's position on my chargeback.
In my highly-detailed and well documented post supporting my case, "A charge-back for services not provided, products sold not as described, etc." I explain the basis for the charge-back was, 1) Materially Misrepresenting Condition of Parts Sold; 2) Overcharging for Services Rendered; 3) Failure to Provide All Promised Services; 4) Unlawful Sale and Installation of Replacement Engine Without VIN.
I was unaware Ozzi's Automotive sold me an engine with the VIN scratched off at the time I authorized the transaction. This violates Georgia law O.C.G.A. § 40-4-21 Removal or falsification of Auto Part Identification Number. It states, "A person who, willfully and with intent to misrepresent the identity of a vehicle or engine, removes or falsifies an identification number of the vehicle or engine... is guilty of a felony. A person convicted of a felony under this subsection shall be punished by a fine of not less than $500.00 nor more than $5,000.00, or by imprisonment for not less than one year nor more than five years, or by both such fine and imprisonment."
Not sure if anyone took business law classes during undergrad, but one thing I recall is, "illegal contracts are unenforceable." Frankly, since this transaction involved the illegal sale of an engine without a VIN, the entire amount should be charged back. Also, the resale value of the car went to $0 because selling a vehicle with a missing engine VIN is illegal, so I can't sell it, either. However, I'm not asking for the entire amount to be charged back because God only knows what USAA will do to further confuse the issues and delay proper resolution of this matter.
Please correct the chargeback decision using Chargeback Reason Codes 13.1 - Merchandise/Services Not Received, 13.3 - Not as Described or Defective Merchandise/Services, and/or 13.5 - Misrepresentation before November 27, the date set to reverse the temporary credit. Also, I was told the merchant had 60 days to respond to the chargeback. I requested the chargeback in August, so we're well beyond 60 days. Did the merchant respond after 60 days or did USAA sit on the decision for a month or more before sharing it with me?
I don't want a phone call from a "Subject Matter Expert" and please don't ask for my patience. Just fix the problem and send me an email letting me know it's corrected. I've waited months for this to be resolved and it appears no one even read my supporting documentation before making a decision. I can't believe the amount of time I've spent on this and other USAA mistakes (e.g., failing to reverse a fraudulent transaction took over 50 hours of my time).
This needs to be fixed by Nov 27th or the temporary credit will be reversed.
I've written, uploaded documents, and called multiple times. No one explained to me why this hasn't been resolved?
If the mechanic would've let me have my car back BEFORE I authorized the charge so I could learn there were more problems with the engine than before I brought it to him (provided proof of that to USAA several times), that the VIN on the engine was removed (mechanic doesn't deny it), and that other services I was told would be performed weren't, etc. then I wouldn't approved the transaction.
But mechanic's don't let you drive off with the car without paying. Especially mechanics who buy parts from a chop shop and put them in your car. I intend to report him to the authorities for selling an engine without a VIN, which is in violation of O.G.C.A. § 40-2-21 regarding "Removal or Falsification of Vehicle Identification Number."
Denying the chargeback because I was charged the amount on the invoice