Monday, September 22, 2008

Unwanted Surprises

I'm like the next person, I generally love surprises, however, I do not like certain types of surprises. I certainly did not like the surprise I received on Saturday.

I have been looking for a different table/chair set since we decided to move. We do not need the huge table we have currently so I've been on the look out for a smaller one. I really want a round oak one, but it must have a leaf for expansion in case we ever have company. On Saturday I found exactly what I was looking for at a local store. They were having a grand opening event so I figured that I may get a good deal.

I went through the process of filling out a credit application with the salesman as I wanted the pay over eight months option. He took all my information and then called in to their credit department. The guy on the other end asked to speak to me. I was thinking, "uh oh, this can't be good." The guy informed me that they couldn't approve me as I had an outstanding bill with ICBC (the insurance company in BC). I was astounded.

I haven't lived in BC since 2006, it is now 2008. At no time has anyone contacted me to say I owed them money. I phoned to cancel my insurance in December of 2006 and was told I had to mail my plates back along with various bits of paperwork. I sent everything they asked for back to the address I was given. Again, keep in mind THIS WAS TWO YEARS AGO.

I phoned an ICBC office on Saturday when I got back from the store. The fellow I spoke to informed me that they'd never received my plates. Well isn't that just great. I asked him what I was supposed to do since I had sent them, I no longer have them, they say they don't have them.... quite the conundrum. He said well if we look up when your vehicle was registered in Alberta ....

At this point I'm hyperventilating.

In Dec 2006 my Dad sold me a half ton truck. I left my old truck (the one that had been registered/insured in BC) in his driveway with no plates and no insurance. He was going to sell it for me. Months passed and no offers came. Dad decided to get the out of province inspection done on it (BIG money grab since that truck was originally bought and insured in Alberta and was in better shape than a lot of vehicles you currently see on the road). In order to do so he had to register/insure it himself. This was June 2007.

See my conundrum..... I can't prove that vehicle was sitting in his driveway unplated and uninsured as of December 2006. I can't prove I mailed those plates back. ICBC has put into the Credit Bureau of Canada to the tune of $470 worth of insurance I NEVER used.

I don't have a spare $470 kicking around, I also don't think I should have to pay this. I did what was required of me. Either those plates went missing in action while enroute to BC or someone at ICBC dropped the ball and failed to enter the receipt of said plates into their system.

I don't know what to do. Every time I think I'm getting ahead a lovely little surprise rears it's nasty head.

If anyone has any suggestions on how to fight the big bad government of BC please tell me. I have emailed the premier with this issue as I don't know who is in charge of ICBC or who to contact. My Dad told me to get a lawyer...but if I don't have the $470, I certainly can't afford a lawyer, and I'm pretty sure I won't find one to work on contingency.

What really bites is I've worked hard to clean my credit up since leaving my marriage. I am waiting to be contacted for a position that I had to put on hold for a year due to security issues regarding credit, which I've cleaned up. THIS has just cost me any chance I had.

Oh and one other thing...WHY is it that I am automatically the one at fault here... they won't even consider that they made a mistake or the plates went MIA enroute????

I hate big business and I hate the government even more.

I'm frustrated and I'm tired and I'm pissed.


Mandy said...

Ahhh. The joys of dealing with ICBC where customer service is something they try not to provide.

I hope it has a happy ending!

Rebecca said...

This sucks!