A Sheffield man could not understand why he had been charged for an insurance policy for a car he had not owned for nearly two years.
Witold Wojcik, from Tinsley, took out insurance with Saga for his Suzuki Wagon R in May 2013, but the vehicle broke down in August that year.
He bought a Fiat Punto and informed the insurance company to stop the Suzuki policy and insure the new car instead.
Mr Wojcik said he was told Saga could not transfer the old policy to the new car, so he would have to open a new policy and cancel the old one.
He was also advised that, in order to get a full refund for the Suzuki policy, he would need to send them a DVLA certificate.
He said: “I informed them my priority was to stop the policy for the unused Suzuki and get new policy for Punto. They agreed to take care of that.
“They sent me the new policy for Punto, but no information about the refund for Suzuki followed.
“I ask them about it again and they said they were waiting for DVLA certificate.
“I got this certificate finally and send it to them by post. Unfortunately, I sent the original.
“Then I was waiting for a result. The money did not come and I almost forget about it.”
However, in May, Mr Wojcik received a quote to insure the Suzuki from May 2015 to 2016.
Shocked, he went to his bank and discovered a direct debit had been opened on his account and Saga had been taking money out for the non-existing car policy.
He said: “I called them and described the situation and was told everything would be corrected and was asked to send them the DVLA certificate again.”
Mr Wojcik contacted the DVLA again and was told by a Saga customer service representative he did not know why his colleague did not do anything to cancel the policy. He told Action Desk: “I do not believe they can resolve my situation without your intervention as in the last letter they informed me the policy for Suzuki was cancelled from May 30, 2015.”
Action Desk contacted Saga, which said they would be giving me Mr Wojcik a full refund after receiving the DVLA document.
A spokesman said: “If a customer replaces their vehicle they would usually call us so we can update their policy with the new vehicle details. However, instead of calling us Mr Wojcik went online and bought a new policy in addition to the one he already held with us.
“Mr Wojcik’s original policy was set up to automatically renew each year. Therefore we sent him his renewal documentation last year, but it appears did not arrive. It was only when Mr Wojcik received the renewal invitation for the Suzuki this year that he called us to tell us that he did not own the vehicle.
“We asked him to send us the DVLA paperwork to prove that he no longer owned the car – which most insurers do – so we could cancel his policy and give him a refund.”
He said: “Whether customers buy their insurance online or over the phone, all customer policies are held within the same system. All customer calls are recorded and we have checked our records thoroughly and can’t find any calls from Mr Wojcik about cancelling the policy for his Suzuki in August 2013.”
Mr Wojcik said: “I chatted with them when I was on their website trying to cancel Suzuki policy, but that policy was not visible on the website.
“The operator advised me to call, rather then try to do it on the website if it did not work.
“I called them by phone several times and asked them to cancel the Suzuki policy and always they said ok.”