Driver stuck with fees when DMV sends him new sticker, then says they can't renew the registration

ByMichael Finney and Randall Yip via KGO logo
Wednesday, November 9, 2022
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The East Bay man already had his new registration sticker on his car when the DMV told him they couldn't renew the registration, and slapped him with a late fee and a bounced check fee.

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. (KGO) -- A Walnut Creek man paid his registration fee to the DMV, but then eight weeks after he received his sticker, the DMV alleged it never received the payment.

Kim Dromlewicz showed 7 On Your Side the updated registration sticker on his rear license plate. He also showed us the receipt he received after he entered his payment online.

"And I got the stickers probably within a week. It seemed pretty quick," Dromlewicz told us.

Then two months later, the Department of Motor Vehicles sent him a bill for a late fee and a bounced check.

"Check with the bank immediately. They had never seen any kind of check come in that they dishonored," he said.

However, his bank also didn't have any record of his check being cashed either.

"So something had gone wrong at DMV we discovered or assumed," the Walnut Creek man said.

He went to his local DMV office, but they told him there was nothing they could do about his late fees of $187, so he paid it.

He also continued to fight the charges, which he felt were unjust.

As a last resort, Dromlewicz contacted 7 On Your Side. We contacted the DMV and it responded within hours.

It not only agreed to refund his late charges, but it practically broke speed records sending him the money.

"And sure enough the next morning, 8 am, here comes a courier with the check," he said.

The agency told 7 On Your Side: "A DMV representative researched this issue and discovered an error in the payment process... and immediately initiated the process for a refund of $187. The DMV apologized to Mr. Dromlewicz for any inconvenience."

"7 On Your Side was the intermediary and did a great job of putting me in touch with the right person," said a grateful Dromlewicz.

Take a look at more stories and videos by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

7OYS's consumer hotline is a free consumer mediation service for those in the San Francisco Bay Area. We assist individuals with consumer-related issues; we cannot assist on cases between businesses, or cases involving family law, criminal matters, landlord/tenant disputes, labor issues, or medical issues. Please review our FAQ here. As a part of our process in assisting you, it is necessary that we contact the company / agency you are writing about. If you do not wish us to contact them, please let us know right away, as it will affect our ability to work on your case. Due to the high volume of emails we receive, please allow 3-5 business days for a response.

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