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turo.com Car rental dispute. Faulty car - Wheel Nuts came off on modified Wheel whilst driving!! scammed me of £2000 too!!


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Hi all,

first post on here and in need of some advice.

 

I rented a car through the app Turo which is private rentals.

I got the car and everything was all ok.

 

On the last day when I was planning to return the car I was driving approximately 15-20mph on a side road and the wheel of the car completely come off causing damage. I looked out in the road and only recovered 2 out of the 5 wheel nuts. Thus telling me somehow the other 3 had fallen out.

 

After the incident I noticed the wheels were not standard and had been modified to fit the car.

I have photographic proof of this. 

 

On the Turo website it states that if there is a fault due to mechanical problems this is down to the host to repair.

I have been emailing them disputing the fact that a wheel should not come off of a car whilst moving and this is a mechanical fault.

 

They replied the first few emails then stopped replying and they have now taken £2000 out of my account without notifying me.

Can someone please advise on how I move forward with this as I don’t believe I am liable to pay.

 

Many thanks Alfie 

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First of all, it would be helpful if you didn't post your story the solid block of text. It's very difficult to read and it puts people off helping you.

Properly spaced please.

 

You haven't told us how long you rented the car for.

Presumably this money was taken using a prepayment method – such as a debit card or credit card.

You should contact your bank immediately and begin a chargeback if it was a debit card.

 

You should write to the rental company and put them on notice that they are responsible for the condition of the car and they are obliged to let you have the car in a satisfactory condition and certainly roadworthy.

If it had wheel nuts which were loose then clearly it was supplied to you in a dangerous condition.

Tell them that you are beginning a process with your bank or credit card supplier to recover the money – but also you are considering suing them in the County Court.

I suggest that this may well be where it is going to end up and I think that it is important for your own interest to act quickly and assertively. If you allow yourself to get drawn into any protracted discussion or if you allow yourself to be delayed in any way, you will lose control and you will had the advantage to the rental company
 

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  • BankFodder changed the title to Car rental dispute. Faulty car - turo.com

In fact I've just looked at the website of https://turo.com/gb/en and I see that it is not a normal car rental company. It is a car sharing company.

This may make things a little bit more difficult.

Contact your bank and start reclaiming the money as I have said – but maybe you can tell us a little bit about how the rental actually works.

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post 1 sorted.

ouch ..this could have been fatal!!

 

great you have photos well done!!

 

i also hope whomever is the insurance company covering the car were made aware of the medications else this invalidates any motor insurance 

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

DCA's view debtors as suckers, marks and mugs

NO DCA has ANY legal powers whatsoever on ANY debt no matter what it's Type

and they

are NOT and can NEVER  be BAILIFFS. even if a debt has been to court..

If everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's Tomorrow, their industry would collapse overnight... 

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  • dx100uk changed the title to turo.com Car rental dispute. Faulty car - Wheel Nuts came off on modified Wheel whilst driving!! scammed me of £2000 too!!

Hi sorry for the big paragraph. Will take note. 

 

Thanks for all the advice. I had rented the car for 4 days and it had been fine. On the last day I pulled of and it was like the wheel was egg shaped (ride was really bouncy) I then began to pull over as this was not right and then I felt the whole wheel come off.

 

I don’t understand how they can say this isnt mechanical. It’s not like I was driving crazy and smashed into a parked car. 

 

As for how how turo works. You can privately advertise your car on there for rental but get all the perks of insurance and guarantee etc. You don’t actually hire the car from turo it’s similar to how air bnb works. 

 

I need to to look into their insurance policies regarding modified parts and whether they were actually notified as the car would have been voided for rental. 

 

I spoke to my bank before I made the post and they said they can’t do anything as the amount is in pending transactions and sometimes rental companies take money if they’re not satisfied with the condition of the car. I am currently on hold to them to see if I can request a chargeback as I didn’t actually know what the correct term for what I needed was. 

 

How do they have the power to do so as I cannot take my initial rental fee back for unsatisfactory service. I had just driven 100 miles with my 7 year old daughter in the car beside me. Luckily she wasn’t with me when the wheel had come off. 

 

Again, thanks for your help guys

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Wheels and wheel bolts are clearly mechanical. You're dealing with an organisation here which is gearing up to deny liability.

I disagree that the bank can't do anything – and you ought to contact them again and tell them that you are complaining. You are the customer and you are giving them a direct instruction. But in writing – but tell them that you are making a claim immediately and you want reference number for the ombudsman.

If Turo are simply an agency which introduces you to someone who is renting out their car, on what basis have they taken the money? It's clear that their status is far more and some independent party not involved in the contract – and at the very least, by taking money I think they have implicated themselves into the contract.

I suppose it's a bit like travel agents who when things go wrong, try to say that they are simply an agent and they are nothing to do with the airline or the with the hotel et cetera.

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I have just gotten off the phone to the bank. They’re saying they can’t do a chargeback and I will have to deal with turo to get my money back. 

 

Looks like inwill will have to seek legal advice and go to the courts 

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well you don't need external legal advise 

all here already

 

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

DCA's view debtors as suckers, marks and mugs

NO DCA has ANY legal powers whatsoever on ANY debt no matter what it's Type

and they

are NOT and can NEVER  be BAILIFFS. even if a debt has been to court..

If everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's Tomorrow, their industry would collapse overnight... 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Perhaps @BankFodder meant to respond but hasn't had an opportunity yet. Tagging in case they may appreciate a gentle nudge.

 

But in any case, you must do as BankFodder suggested in post #6 - write to the bank and raise a formal complaint. Inform them that you, as their customer, are giving them a direct instruction to recover your money which has been taken without your permission and without justification. Ask that they issue a complaint reference number as it is your intention to pursue the matter with the ombudsman if they refuse to perform their duty. I would ask them to confirm, if their position remains the same, that their response on the matter is final, then you can proceed to the ombudsman with your complaint.

 

Personally I would write to Turo at the same time, marking your letter as a Letter Before Claim and informing that unless they refund your money within 14 days you will begin a claim in the county court without further notice, during which you will claim your money back, plus costs and interest. Search the site for examples of a LBC. You don't need to go into detail about them saying the failure wasn't mechanical etc. You want your money, they've got it and they haven't - as far as I can tell - anywhere near justified why they've taken it.

 

I suppose they may attempt to fob you off by telling you the contract was between you and the vehicle owner but it was Turo that took your money, not the owner.

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Sorry, I don't know why I've missed all of this.

Have you any idea on what grounds the bank refused the chargeback?

Have you made a complaint to the rental company?

 

Also, do you have the name and address of the owner of the vehicle?

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Apart from suggesting that you follow the advice already given, I'd also say that moving forward I wouldn't touch this car sharing club with an extra long barge-pole!

 

Looking at their T&Cs they attempt to pass all responsibility for the vehicle's safety and mechanical condition etc on to "the host" (whom I presume is the person who actually owns the car), and I certainly would not be wanting to put my own safety or that of my 7 year old child in the hands of a private individual I have never met.  How is the roadworthiness of the "shared" cars regulated?

 

You liken it to Air B'n'B, but think of all the horror stories you read about unsafe and substandard accommodation.  At least an unsafe house or apartment is unlikely to kill you or your family - unlike an unsafe car.

 

In any case, the T&Cs seem to clearly make it the "host's" responsibility to ensure the car is in good condition, not the person "hiring" the car.  A modified wheel coming off should be the owner's responsibility.

 

What reason have theyactually  given for taking the £2k?

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  • 2 weeks later...

They took the 2k for the damages to the vehicle without my consent or answering any emails from explaining how the damage was caused. 

 

I managed to speak with someone last week from turo and they said to re send the email stating why I’m appealing. Have since sent the email with photos of the damaged wheel. Still no response. 

 

I have since seen the car car is back out for hire on instagram with the same wheels on it. The picture I have of the inside of the wheel shows damage and I’m wondering if they’ve even changed he wheel. 

 

Regarding moving forward with this, should I go to the ombudsman.

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The ombudsman will only be of use to you in respect of the bank's refusal to implement a chargeback.

In terms of liability of the vehicle, we need to work out who it is you have made your contract with. Is it with the owner of the vehicle or is it with Turo?

 

You will definitely have to begin a legal action which will be straightforward as long as we can identify who your contract was with/who was responsible for the car.

I can't remember if I've asked this already but presumably you know who the owner is and you know their address

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I believe the contract was with turo as I made the hire through them and it was them that took the initial rental fee plus the 2k from my account. 

 

Regarding the name and address of the owner of the vehicle. I have the name and they give an address on the app to pick the car up. Not sure whether this is their registered address or not. 

 

So the ombudsmen eill only be able to advise regarding the chargeback from the bank. What’s he protocol for dealing with the money being taken. 

 

Many fhanks 

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You could try checking the address of the property here https://eservices.landregistry.gov.uk/eservices/FindAProperty/view/QuickEnquiryInit.do and that will tell you if the name you have is the owner of the property. If the name is not the owner of the property then that doesn't necessarily mean that that is not their address – but it is worth checking. I think it will cost you 3 pounds.

You say that you "believe" that the contract was with turo.  If you are going to issue legal proceedings then you really need to be certain. If you issue legal proceedings and you will incur a fee and if you see the wrong person then you will lose that fee and you will have to begin again.

Have you checked the Turo contract?

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Apart from anything else, I think you should send Turo an SAR. You should send it today

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Have you seen this document https://support.turo.com/hc/en-us/articles/360001918108-Damage-claims-UK

 

I suggest that you download it so that you have a copy.

It seems to me that there is a clear duty for them to carry out an investigation. I can imagine that they have not carried out a very thorough investigation and it certainly seems remarkable that they have seized a round figure of £2000 from you and no justification.

Based on the information you have, have you managed to get your own estimate of the cost of the damage? I know that your position is that you are not responsible – but just in case it will be worth getting a quote for the work because if it turns out to be substantially less than the amount of money they have taken, then that will help to undermine their credibility.

I notice also that they apparently taken advance deposit of £500. They take this from you?

I'm pretty certain that the contract is with the owner of the vehicle so it is a kind of AirBnB  arrangement. However, it will be much more useful to bring Turo into the frame and so I think that if you send the SAR and either they don't make the disclosure – or else what they disclosed shows that there hasn't been a proper investigation or doesn't give any information about the actual costs of the damage, then I think that you have got a good basis for suing them as well as the owner of the car and frankly I would think about doing both at the same time as first and second defendant.

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I need to look into the details on whether it was made with turo or the owner. 

 

It states on their website that who ever rents a vehicle is liable for damage no matter what unless it was mechanical. 

 

They said they investigated and found me to be at fault as the damage was not there before I hired the vehicle. I argued and they said they’d look into. I kept chasing them and had no response and then they took the money. 

 

They are not taking into account how the damage was caused, which I know is mechanical. They’re looking at the before and after pictures and just basing it off that. If the wheel didn’t come flying off the car there wouldn’t have been any cosmetic damage. 

 

The trouble i am having is turo aren’t responding to emails. B83B5B62-3E68-41A8-9FD1-D344F350DD39.thumb.png.b421b7b6aa09fecaa65e6c76cd342349.png

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236714C8-F23C-4AE1-A2FD-AE997316041A.png

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I have just gone onto turo website and began a online chat from a different account to see what they would say about the issue I’ve got without knowing it’s me as such. 

 

It states in there that the contract is with turo. And if there’s is cosmetic damaged caused by mechanical failure then the host is liable. 

 

Also so it states on there that a representative should have come to where the incident happened to do a report. This did not happen, only a recovery truck came and took the vehicle. 

121618A4-DC94-42C9-AE13-C5822045939F.png

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E506DF72-561D-4C10-BC3E-D97D53827BAB.png

268E432A-147C-4D62-9583-97ACD7E93FF7.png

1F12995B-4FDF-415A-9D9F-ADC84994542B.png

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Thanks. This is helpful – but none of it is surprising.

It simply confirms that your contract is actually with the owner of the vehicle – and they have a contractual responsibility to supply you with a vehicle in good condition.

Turo are simply responsible for putting you together and handling the organisation of it all including payments.

However, they are also responsible for carrying out a proper investigation before deciding who should be at fault.

From that point of view, the chat that you have obtained is very helpful – but you need to send the SAR in order to get the definitive account of what they did – investigation et cetera.

If the information you get confirms what we believe that the whole thing was cursory and that there was no proper investigation – and also there was no proper assessment of the value of any damage, then we will probably suggest that you sue Turo – and maybe the owner as well for breaching their part the contract – failing to provide a car in satisfactory condition.

I think sending the SAR is essential

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Ok thanks for the response. Am I right in thinking  I should be dealing with turo as it was them that took the money?

 

Regarding the subject access request. Do I email turo, once again stating the issue and demanding an SAR

 

Is an SAR basically a break down of the procedure they went through that brought them to the conclusion to take the money?

 

The person on the other end of that chat clearly states that if cosmetic damage was due to mechanical then the host is at fault and an investigation should have been done. 

 

From what i remember they had a quote done by a garage for the works done but didn’t respond or anything regarding the dispute, just that they took the money. I’ll have to go through my emails and double check 

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I suggest that you go through all your emails et cetera and organise a file on this.

Get your own quotation based on photographs. This is very important.

Do the SAR today. Use our template – keep it as broad as possible and don't refer to this issue or anything else. You simply want all the personal data that they are holding on you on any matter and in any form.

As soon as you start stating issues, you put them on guard and also you limit the scope of their disclosure.

Use our template as a basis for the SAR and don't start adding anything of your own.

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I'm not suggesting that the OP do anything at the moment other than what has been suggested so far.

 

I would add, however, that if the OP had only hired the car for a period of four days (have I got that right?) and the wheel fell off on the final day of hire, then that in itself strongly suggests that the car could not have been mechanically sound at the start of the hire.  How can a wheel become so loose over four days that it falls off - unless it was already loose or otherwise unfit at the outset?  (It could be argued that the OP had not checked the wheel nuts - but who would check wheel nuts* over a period of four days?  I would suggest it's far more likely that the "host" was at fault for not checking the wheel nuts before hiring the vehicle out to the OP)

 

If the TURO T&Cs specify that the "host" (whom I presume is the owner of the vehicle who is hiring it out) is reponsible for the mechanical fitness of the car being hired out, then they - not the OP - must be liable for any mechanical damage and consequent cosmetic damage.  And the exchange between the OP and Turo posted above seems to confirm that.

 

As I say, I don't want to go against what has already been suggested to the OP, but I'd be inclined to go back to Turo straightaway and challenge them as to the grounds for taking the £2k.  I'd be making it clear that the cost of repairing any damage to the car is the "host's" responsibility, and if Turo don't return my £2k I'll be taking legal action to recover it from them under their own T&Cs.  Whether others would agree with this, I don't know.

 

I'd also be challenging my bank again on this - basing my challenge on Turo's own T&Cs.

 

* I probably ought to be ashamed to admit it, but I've never checked wheel nuts in over 20 years of driving - and a wheel has never yet fallen off!

Edited by Manxman in exile
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I agree with what you say – but I think one needs to be a little bit more cautious. Going back to Turo straightaway – empty-handed of evidence – is simply going to put them on guard and make things more difficult later on.

The thing to do is to slow down, acquire evidence – and then when ready, to going on strike knowing that you have a good hand to play.

It all takes time and strategy in order to win

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