I-TEAM: State threatening to suspend Carvana’s license to sell cars in Florida

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The News4JAX I-TEAM has uncovered new troubles for the online used car dealer Carvana, which could lose its license to sell cars in the state of Florida.

Florida’s Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles is threatening to pull the company’s dealer license over ongoing title issues.

“The department has been proactively working with Carvana to identify and assist Florida customers who have not received their title in a timely manner,” a department spokesperson wrote, in part, in an email to the I-TEAM. “The department has notified Carvana that if it fails to submit title applications for any sale made prior to December 1, 2021, by January 31, 2022, the department may commence administrative action to suspend Carvana’s dealer license in Florida.”

Meanwhile, new complaints about delayed titles, registrations and tags continue to pour in.

Jamar Clarke contacted the I-TEAM because he said he still hasn’t doesn’t have his vehicle’s title, registration and license plates after purchasing a 2019 Nissan Maxima in March 2021.

″I started realizing I had a problem probably two months after I bought the car,” Clarke said.

Clarke, who lives in Georgia, said Carvana has issued him four temporary tags from the state of Florida.

And, ironically, he’s received letters from Carvana about the status of his car that are leading to more confusion, he said.

“In the last couple of months, I’ve been receiving, “You are in risk of illegally owning the car, and I’m, like, ‘How? I’m paying all my insurance, car payments on time after I’ve been sending you information,’” Clarke said.

Clarke said he’s been pulled over by police for driving on expired temporary tags, and even though the officer only issued him a warning, he thinks Carvana should be held responsible.

“At least issue Carvana more citations. At most shut Carvana down if they continue to do this, especially after all the stories that are coming out now,” Clarke said.

Clarke is just one of dozens of customers to complain about title delays from Carvana, which is facing similar complaints from drivers in California, Texas, Michigan, North Carolina and most recently Pennsylvania, where some customers have filed a class-action lawsuit.

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The state of Florida has already filed two administrative complaints against Carvana. The state’s first complaint resulted in $6,000 in fines.

News4JAX reached out to Carvana, asking the company to explain why so many customers are experiencing title delays. A company spokesperson wrote back:

“Carvana appreciates our constructive and continuing dialogue with the DHSMV and will continue to serve Florida customers fantastic car buying experiences.”

About the Author:

Tarik anchors the 4, 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. weekday newscasts and reports with the I-TEAM.