Delta Auto Protect — yes, Delta Auto Protect again! — owes Lashawn Lyles $1,083. Why won’t it pay?
Q: I was reading your stories about Delta Auto Protect and I see that there are other customers who have had an issue with receiving their refund. I’m one of them.
I bought a 2010 Cadillac SRX last November and paid $1,405 for a warranty through Delta Auto Protect. Earlier this year, I took my vehicle to my dealership for repairs. The dealership could not receive an authorization for its repair estimate. Each time the service manager would call Delta Auto Protect, the company either hung up on or left the manager on “hold” for over an hour.
I tried contacting Delta and I experienced the exact same thing, so I canceled my warranty. In January, a Delta Auto Protect representative said the company mailed a $1,083 check. I didn’t receive it so I called Delta Auto Protect the next month. A representative told me the check was issued in February. I never received it.
It’s been three months and I still haven’t received the check. I have called Delta Auto Protect several times and they hang up on me.
I just don’t understand how they can operate in this manner. They don’t pay for repairs and they don’t issue refunds. How do they stay in business?
They can’t just keep my money. Can you help? — Lashawn Lyles, Dublin, Calif.
A: Another Delta Auto Protect case? I’m getting so many of these, I may need to rename this feature. But Delta Auto Protect Problems Solved doesn’t quite have the same ring as Problem Solved.
It looks as if you spent a lot of time on the phone asking various Delta Auto Protect representatives about your check. I note that the answers were inconsistent, ranging from “We mailed it last month,” to “We mailed it this month,” to their best dial-tone impression. But to fix this problem, you need to stay off the phone and send an email to Delta Auto Protect.
How to contact Delta Auto Protect
I would start by filling out the company’s online contact form. If you don’t get a check, then you can appeal to someone higher up. As I’ve noted before, Delta Auto Protect makes it difficult to appeal to a manager. But my research department unearthed a few Delta Auto Protect executive contacts.
But you knew all of that already, right? The more interesting question is: How do they stay in business? I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately. A recent study published in Harvard Business Review suggests that poor service can lead to higher profits. That’s the only reasonable explanation I can think of: counterintuitively, Delta Auto Protect must be offering poor service in order to boost its profits. Oh, how I hope I’m wrong about that.
There’s a reason I’ve been writing about these Delta Auto Protect cases. I hope enough readers see them and understand that they’re dealing with a company that apparently has a business model that doesn’t put the customer first. That it may, in fact, be offering bad service on purpose. Let stories like yours serve as a warning.
I contacted Delta Auto Protect on your behalf, and it sent you the check three months late. But better late than never.