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Insurance Law/MVA Insurance Lapse, Default


Joe wrote at 2008-09-30 19:57:25
Joe writes on 2008-09-29 18:13:50

We moved to Pa. from Md. in 2000. In 2004, my wife received a notice from the Maryland DMV she owed over $5,000 in fines for lapsed insurance. We had gone through this in 2001 for our other car. I again took proof of insurance coverage in Pa. for this vehicle to the DMV on 8/23/2004. I again spent the better part of the day debating with DMV workers about this mistake. They finally relented and closed the case. On 9/26/2008, we were greeted with an invoice from the State Of Maryland Central Collections Unit in our mail box. This notice was for impending legal action because we have not acted on payment in the past 60 days. Why did this take another 4 years to dredge up this headache again? I called the collection unit. They would only talk to my wife. I them called the Md.MVA Insurance Compliance Office. I explained the problem. The woman put me on hold while she looked up the file. She admitted that the case was indeed closed in 2004. She told me she would fax the info to the collections unit. I told my wife to call them in several days to make sure this is finally taken care of. This has been very frustrating at the lapse of time involved and the lack of decent record keeping and communication between departments. I was lucky enough to live close to the DMV to do battle face to face. The first time in 2001 I sent in proof of insurance 3 times and still received notices. My insurance man then took over, to no avail. I went in person to present my arguement. The clerk that waited on me pulled my file folder and found all the paperwork sent to them crammed in it. The DMV workers just stuck it in the folder and took no action. The poor woman was totally embarrased at what had happened. All I can say is hang in there and good luck  

Lynn wrote at 2011-10-25 14:35:25
There are a lot of us with this issue. I moved from Baltimore 14 years ago, have never been uninsured, don't believe I still have 14-year old records, and just got a bill for $5356.26. My husband moved from Maryland 13 years ago (not my husband back then) and he too, recently received a gigantic bill. Similar stories are all over scam report sites. So far we've ignored this but I'd like to know something better I can do.

Miki wrote at 2012-06-30 17:34:10
Hi , I'm in the same situation , in October 2010 I moved to new York , I returned my tag and cancel my insurance in December 2010. A week ago 6/22/12 I revived a letter in the mail that say I owe $3,431.61 to DMV??!! Please , someone have sulution for this??

B Higgins wrote at 2012-07-30 00:45:55
It would be best to get a lawyer like i did. I am fighting this as we speak. But they wont answer our letters from him. They just send me letters saying they are taking my state income tax in Maryland but I dont live there. Good luck.

cwwife wrote at 2012-09-01 01:53:27
I have been researching this also as we received the same notice this week (apparently CCU is cleaning house again, another bad audit)My husband retired out of Fort Mead in 2001 and moved to Fl. where he registered his car and transferred the USAA insurance to that state, there was no lapse. They were notified of the insurance change but he was not informed the plates needed to be mailed back, so they are after us for $820 for the 4 months the plates were not in use but were still valid. Neither USAA or Florida keeps records that far back, but a very helpful USAA agent tried to help and CCU hung up on him twice. I don't believe CCU ever tries to fix this because the are a privately contracted collection service and their revenue is generated by the amount of fees they collect plus a bonus for extra collections.  Why not sit on it till no one can contest it.

yims wrote at 2012-11-02 20:49:50
Oh my gosh, I just got a letter from CCU about this very issue. I had moved in June 2012, and didn't get the insurance notices from MVA even though I applied for mail forwarding. I renewed in September, but was slapped with over a $1000 fine. I requested mail forwarding but apparently the MVA notices were not forwarded. Is there any way I can appeal? This is horrible; I never got something like this before. Would the safe way be to pay it now, and then fight with it in writing? I heard it would be admitting to debt if you pay it. But if you don't, the letter says interest is accrueing. Please advise!

dimichan wrote at 2015-07-28 19:39:58
I am in a sort of similar situation.  In August of 2005 I moved to Arizona.  Just yesterday (yes, 1 month short of 10 years later), I received a notice for insurance lapse when I first relocated.  After all this time I don't even know who I had insurance with, much less any records, and going over 2000 miles back to argue with them is, obviously, out of f the question.  In addition, I had issues getting both insurance and a license here due to an MVA screwup.  The original card with the number issued to me in the computer printed crooked, so the technician shredded it and reprinted it on the next card on the sheet.  Unfortunately, it wasn't corrected in the computer, so my license number showed as invalid.  My "option" to fix this was, you guessed it, to travel back and get a new license.  I had not received any notification in the last 10 years that I was showing lapsed insurance.  Is there anything I can do to sort out this massive headache that won't cost me over $5000?

K.Long wrote at 2015-07-29 18:07:53
I just received a letter from State of Maryland Central Collection Unit saying I owe $918.45 for a lapse in insurance in 1999!  15 years ago!  Really??? In fact, I didn't even live in Maryland during that time. This is the first letter I have received about this supposed 15 yr old debt. How can the State of Maryland do this?  Now I have to take time out of my busy day to fight this bogus bill? I called the MVA at 410-768-7295 and spoke with a Sue Love who pulled my driving record and confirmed I did not live there. She put me on hold and tried to call CCU, but couldn't get through. She said she was going to pass my case to a Marva Salvi at the MVA to get this resolved. We shall see...

Someone should write the Governor of Maryland and stop this practice immediately!  It is unethical!

nini wrote at 2015-08-10 22:35:56
I just received my letter today.  I have not lived in Maryland for 14 years.  The lapse period they listed - I wasn't even living there during that time. I tried to contact CCU, but just got a voice mail and no one answered the phone.  I looked online and found an email address (valid?) -  I sent an email.  No response. I found this forum and called Sue Love (thank you for whoever posted that!), she took my information, and said that Marva Salvi would contact me.  I also emailed the MVA with the background of this issue, a copy of the letter (obscuring the SS#), and background of where I'd been since 2001, when I left Maryland.  I also have never heard about any of this until today, and I've lived in three states since Maryland!  

akrateffil wrote at 2015-08-25 17:22:25
Same BS with me. I got a letter from central collections unit stating I had a lapse of insurance from September 2001 to June 2002. I had moved from Maryland in August 2001 to Illinois. Now they are wanting proof of registration. Illinois has vague title info from then but no tag info. How is it we are guilty until proven innocent with no statue of limitations? Why did I not find out there was an issue sooner than 14 years later? I should not have to spend a dime on this issue. Looks like Maryland has disregarded constitutional rights to fair speedy trials!  

Greg Smith wrote at 2015-08-31 21:00:43
Just received what I thought was a scam, but appears to be "legitimate". Moved from Maryland to MA in 1999, they are claiming that I owe them nearly $4000 for failing to have insurance from June 2000 to September 2001. Haven't lived in MD for 16 years, haven't owned the vehicle since early 2007. First I'd heard this was an issue. Car was never uninsured even for an instant (Massachusetts has some of the toughest instance laws in the country - you can't even register without proof of insurance). Clearly the State of Maryland is desperate for revenue and think that these scare letters will get people to comply.  

Heather wrote at 2015-08-31 21:18:51
the year before last my year my state refund was intercepted with no letter of explanation as to why.After sitting on hold for 2 days with the state of Maryland to find out why, all i got was "lasp of insurance on a 91 Mercury. I mailed a written request for an investigation as instructed. I heard nothing back from anyone.Last year i got my state return so i thought it was taken care of. Today i receive two letters threatening to again take my return for laps of insurance from 15 years ago!!! this specific car was towed by my apartment complex for sitting in one place for so long due to the engine blowing. Towed to where i have no idea. But it was insured up until then. I couldn't even tell you who my insurance company was 15 years ago.. This is insane.. there has to be some kind of statue of limitation of this crap  

Anna wrote at 2015-09-01 16:13:37
My husband just got one of their letters, stating that we owe to the tune of $3,357.90, for a period of time from 2001-2002, AFTER we'd moved out of state. I think we sent the plates back, but that doesn't seem to matter one way or another to them. We have no documentation from that time, neither does our insurance company. Thankfully we've had USAA since the late 90s, so at least we can get a letter from them stating that we've had continuous coverage, but I think MD is cottoning on to the fact that people are willing to fight this tooth and nail and have arguments prepared. I tried calling the number listed above for Sue Love but got someone else who referred me back to the Central Collections Unit. I asked if there was any legal recourse if we didn't have proper documentation, the woman I talked to at MVA said no, that simply because they have no record of us having turned in our plates, we had to pay the entire fine. I couldn't even talk to anyone at the Collections Unit, because the letter is addressed to my husband, not to me, even though we co-owned the car. This means that he had to take time off work to call during business hours, in order to fight what amounts to legal extortion. I can't express just how angry I am right now.  

Kim wrote at 2015-09-07 17:17:37
I received a letter on 9/4/15 saying that I owed nearly $4000 in fines for lapsed insurance between July 2000 and Sept 2001.  I moved from Maryland in June of 2000, and my insurance never lapsed.  I am writing them immediately (the letter states to request an investigation within 15 days), and will try and dig up documentation.  After fifteen years that is going to be a major challenge.  I am thinking of hiring an attorney.  I am interested in hearing more of others' experience with this.

JP wrote at 2015-09-08 17:58:07
I too have also had this happened to me. The claim is for an insurance lapse from 1998-1999. I have no record. I'm sure the insurance I used has records in their archives, if they decided to keep them. That's nearly 20 years ago. There is no statute of limitations nor limitations to the State of MD's greed! Has anyone been able to find out if there is an appeal's process? Is there an office we could write a letter to or call? I've called the number on the form and received the same bureacratic answer of no way to appeal and to just pay off the fine. Hiring an attorney wouldn't justify the cost of the penalty. I may end up with just as much legal fees but the winner in principle in the end. Justice served, but at a price. I heard on old forums that people have written to the State Attorney General's office. Has anyone had an results from that? Good luck to all of us. The Freestate of MD is not worth its "freeness."

Amy Wilson wrote at 2015-09-10 17:11:03
We have the exact same problem!  Lapse in 1999, moved to New Mexico in 1999.  We had Allstate insurance and they don't keep records back that far. And they won't talk to me, only my husband.  If anyone has success fighting this. please let me know. This is some serious BS.  

Embeddedball wrote at 2015-09-16 18:34:57
Same thing has happened to me.  I received the same letters and I am getting the same bs response from the robots that work inside these departments.  

I have found out that my insurance company reported me after I moved out of the state for having lapsed insurance and after contacting them they can not give me any information because there records do not go back that far!

I traded my vehicle in January of 2005 and the lapse runs through September 30, 2005.  this is complete bs and I think we need to get a higher up in Maryland legislation to get this under control or get a petition started with all people who are being bothered and having to waste our time and resources.

Can someone reply with the physical address they sent there information to appeal?  

Marie wrote at 2015-10-01 17:14:50
I received a letter from the same collections unit, but for, after doing research, overpayment of unemployment benefits. The notice was vague and the word "Discover" for Discover card is spelled "Dicover." I collected 2 unemployment checks between jobs in 1999. I have not lived in MD since 2002. I was never notified that I received erroneous UI payments. Am I legally obligated to pay this? How can the state do this after 16 years?

AB wrote at 2015-12-05 00:32:44
I recently received a letter from the State of Maryland CCU saying I owe them $1965.00 due to an Insurance lapse from 1999, 15 years ago!  IF I don't pay them they will take it out of my 2015 tax refund.  I am looking for a MD lawyer to fight this.  I currently live in CA.  

ffeineandsugar wrote at 2016-01-16 04:05:24
I'm having a similar issue, albeit not for quite the same amount of money - a car that had died on me was towed from next to the mechanics lot after they had it for almost a year (there wasn't enough room on their lot), and I had the garage reimburse me for the salvage value of the vehicle. I had the title signed over, but it was never properly filed, and the city of Baltimore never filed their paperwork either - they auctioned the vehicle, but kept the plates until mid April, and never filed any title changes. Even though I kept paying insurance for 90 days after it had been towed (and over a year after the vehicle had last been operational), the Maryland Motor Vehicles Administration is now seeking hundreds of dollars in insurance fees, and wants to take any income tax refund I may get and keep me from renewing any other vehicles. I've been to the MVA three times over the last month, and they keep changing the requirements for the paperwork. Now they want to put me on a payment plan, and for that, they want me to bring my spouse as well. This is a racket, plain and simple. The House of Delegates needs to change the laws regarding this.

olympusom wrote at 2016-02-06 19:00:58
Welcome to the club my friends. I have 3 "lapses" from 2001 to 2007 for over $8000 and have tried to negotiate a settlement to no avail. I have written to Governor Hogan,my local mayor and Rep Gilchrist. I've also been in touch with the state Comptrollers office who was actually the only office to respond positively but has no jurisdiction. This seems to be one of the few debts that has no statue of limitations  and the only collection agency that will not negotiate even though they have little if any leverage over most debtors

JS wrote at 2016-03-02 20:55:57
I have never received a letter. My accountant just informed me i have a $10k tax lein from these scam artists, and they will take my tax return if I file it! I lived in MD a few different times BUT HAVE NEVER TITLED A VEHICLE THERE! This is a goverment scam, and should be a crime. Please contact me I will fight this until the day I die before I pay a dime!  

Thomas wrote at 2016-03-22 12:30:08
Joe,  I am willing to take this a step further if you have a plan!

Casper wrote at 2016-04-03 20:20:18
I have proof of insurance which I am sending with the letter I just received. I will let you know how it goes. I will be taking them to court if it isn't resolved in a timely way, so should it come to that, I would be happy to also present details of some of these other cases.

Sonya wrote at 2016-08-24 12:06:27
I also recived the same letter last year, called them and told me I had to have proof of insurance and they would take it off. It was from September 99 to June 2000. The amount is $2,268.63, is crazy. I did not live in Maryland at that time I moved to Georgia and had new insurance. Now got another letter from the collection unit. My insurance co pant is trying to help me but, it's to far back and I think the State of Maryland knows that we will have hard time proving it so let's just rip hard working people off. I'm going to write a letter to them explaining everything and ask them to remove my name along with calling the BBB on them cause there is to many similar letters out there that I have read that are going through the same thing. We should sue them for ripping people off. Has anyone had any luck on getting this solved?  

Sonya wrote at 2016-08-24 12:06:37
I also recived the same letter last year, called them and told me I had to have proof of insurance and they would take it off. It was from September 99 to June 2000. The amount is $2,268.63, is crazy. I did not live in Maryland at that time I moved to Georgia and had new insurance. Now got another letter from the collection unit. My insurance co pant is trying to help me but, it's to far back and I think the State of Maryland knows that we will have hard time proving it so let's just rip hard working people off. I'm going to write a letter to them explaining everything and ask them to remove my name along with calling the BBB on them cause there is to many similar letters out there that I have read that are going through the same thing. We should sue them for ripping people off. Has anyone had any luck on getting this solved?  

Matt S wrote at 2016-10-11 06:28:33
I also received a letter from these scam artists. Several thousand dollars from a car that I sold in 2002 before I moved to Arizona. Absolute fraud! I called and the extremely rude lady asked if I had proof of the sale. Excuse me but who in the hell keeps records for 14 years?! I asked so you people, like thieves in the night are going to try and STEAL my tax return. Her responds? YUP! I said good luck with that. I don't live in Maryland anymore and don't get a tax return from that corrupt state. I would be interested in starting a class action lawsuit against this corrupt state. Any takers?

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I have been the no-fault insurance administrator and arbitration specialist for 18 years working for a plaintiffs` law firm. I have a copy of and am familiar with the newest Reg.68 of the New York State insurance law and have sucessfully represented over 300 applicants at hearings and have guided more than 1,500 more that didn`t need to actually go to a hearing.

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