On February 3, after rejecting Northern Leasing’s first response to my BBB complaint, I received their second response. In it, they gave me a one-time chance to buyout the lease by paying $1700 for the privilege of returning the equipment and ending the lease. So instead of paying $1700 over the course of the next two-plus years, I would be paying it all up front.
I rejected their offer, stating the following in my response:
They are asking me to pay the remaining amount on my lease all at once, at which point they will receive the equipment back and can lease it to someone else. This is a benefit to Northern Leasing, not to me. I have set up a website to explain my predicament and help others avoid this kind of predatory leasing arrangement here: www.northernleasingscam.org.
As one of my colleagues stated, “If I sign a contract that says you are allowed to murder me, that doesn’t mean you are allowed to murder me.” The contract is fundamentally unjust, unethical and requires me to pay for something I didn’t want that doesn’t work. I will not agree to pay $1700 for the privilege of returning the equipment.
I don’t believe the BBB has any mechanism for continuing the back-and-forth after two responses. I think they will marked the case closed at this point.
I have to admit I was tempted to pay the $1,700 because of the written guarantee that my lease would be terminated. There is a clause in the lease that says simply because I have completed all the payments, doesn’t mean they have to stop charging me fees. The idea of being done with this once and for all was tempting. But the fact that Northern Leasing would receive the most benefit from the transaction was inspiration for me to continue to try for a better resolution.