A lawyer and his client are fighting back against what they say is unfair repossession of vehicles.
Victoria Jean Church-Dellinger is suing a Detroit financial services company for more than $5 million for keeping a half tank of gas from her car when it was repossessed.
Church-Dellinger of White Lake, Mich., filed the class-action suit Friday in federal court against Ally Financial Inc. for keeping the gas in her 2008 Pontiac G6 when it was repossessed.
“It’s the same as if you left your jacket in there and they didn’t return it to you,” said Brian Parker, her attorney. “You can’t take someone’s coat or fuzzy dice, and you have to return the gas.”
Church-Dellinger, 43, said in the suit the amount she’s seeking is three times the fair-market value of all gas taken from Michigan residents by Ally in the past six years.
She also seeks to force the auto lender, which is majority-owned by the U.S. government, to return all gas seized during that time or pay fair-market value for it and to give owners whose vehicles are repossessed credit for gas left in the tank.
An Ally spokeswoman declined comment.
Parker said he believes it’s the first such lawsuit and he plans similar suits.