The consumer’s issue:
““My vehicle was taken into the dealership for a diagnosis of the Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) valve issues I was experiencing. Contact was made by the dealer with the warranty provider for authorisation to assess the problem and they requested photographs. The vehicle was stripped down and photographs were taken. Expecting it to be authorised by the warranty company, the repair to the EGR valve was completed by the dealer, but the warranty provider then decided to ask for a video of the fault which was impossible because it had already been rectified. I subsequently received correspondence from the warranty company advising me that they will not honour the claim.”
The accredited business’ response:
- We received a call from the dealer and was advised of a potential fault, but to clarify the actual cause of the problem, the vehicle will need to be stripped.
- We requested photographs and a video of the fault so the claim could be assessed.
- Two days later, we received a call from the dealership asking for the authorisation of the repair work which had already been completed.
The adjudication outcome:
- The case was considered by The Motor Ombudsman adjudicator under the Code of Practice for Vehicle Warranty Products, in particular the commitment by the warranty provider on claims handling: “the accredited business will have a simple claims procedure in place to fairly and promptly process your claim”.
- Upon listening to the call recordings, it was clear to the adjudicator that the warranty provider had indeed requested photographs and a video, and no authorisation of the repair had been given to the dealership.
- As the correct process had not been followed, and the dealer proceeded to carry out the repair, the adjudicator could not justify asking the warranty provider to reimburse the costs of this to the customer.
- The consumer was advised that the complaint was now with the dealer and not the warranty administrator.
- The instructions provided to the dealer by the warranty provider were clear, yet these instructions were not followed.
- As such, The Motor Ombudsman could not find a breach of the above clause as the process had been made clear to the business.
- This complaint was not upheld in favour of the consumer, but the customer is now considering their options to pursue the dealer for the cost of the repair.