Yes, they had acquired the assets of Chrysler Financial.
Yes, they had the VIN in their system.
Yes, it had been paid off.
Yes, they could send me a release of lien.
And I got it and looked it over today.
My name was misspelled.
The name of my town was misspelled.
And -- despite my having told them that this was a Chrysler loan and that the lien on the title belonged to DC Services NA LLC -- they carefully explain at the bottom of the release letter that they had acquired the assets of GMAC.
So first I called them to tell them they'd fouled up. And they will fax me another letter in 24 - 48 hours. This is much less useful than actually doing it correctly the first time. They also did their best to misspell as many things that I was giving to them as possible. (My street name, the name of the lienholder, little things like that.)
We decided to find out if there was any hope of pulling this transaction off today so that Sam and Bonnie could take the new van to Indianapolis with them. So we went down, picked up Sam, and headed off to the Secretary of State's office near his house, which is the closest place that can handle this.
Of course, they couldn't, because there was no way for them to tell that Ally Financial actually owned the loan they had issued a release for. Unless Ally Financial could fax them something...
So another call to Ally Financial. Maybe they will manage to fax something in two or three hours, since it is "urgent". The office closes in 20 minutes, but, hey!
I have left our title application in the Secretary of State's office with a check. If the fax shows up by tomorrow morning, they will submit it.
And then maybe we can do this title transfer on Friday morning.
So far, the woman at the Secretary of State window is the only competent person that we've dealt with. This includes the two separate people at the phone line for the Secretary of State who assured us that we could do the duplicate title and title transfer in one operation.
Apparently, that's only true if the car in question is more than ten years old.
Ok, we've found one competent person so far...