Audi financial is keeping my lease equity after total loss

Ok that’s what I was asking thx for clarifying - and no I would not have done it. I am blessed in my life and don’t need to do stuff like that to optimize my financial situation.


If anything they probably said something like “send back the difference*, if any*”

And since they’re the ones deciding, I’m guessing they decided there wasn’t any?

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The precise language matters, of course.

I did email her back and ask if they said this in writing, or if she wrote this making a huge assumption. Just weird to me a claims rep would just say this - it sounds like if you are in a total loss your lease equity is gonzo.

Another interesting concept that [mllcb42] brought up is if LAPD is found at fault, if they would be liable for my lease equity to make me whole. I pitched this to my car accident attorney friend and based on his silence and a long “hmmm” I think it’s maybe possible.

I recall a thread where a guy was going to exercise his buyout (err, his buddy was going to) immediately after a total loss accident. I am going to try to dig up that thread and see what happened. Anybody else have that one handy?

AFS knows the market conditions. They probably have a SOP with every insurance company to get payment sent directly to them and not to the lessee. 100% this is intentional on their part to take the equity. It also sounds like it’s legally their equity since you didn’t exercise your option to buy the car before somebody else bought it (the insurance company).


Well, you have it in the email. Let Progressive get out of this situation if it gets to lawyers. :slight_smile:

Did VW promise to return or not? A clerk couldn’t come up with this.

:point_up_2::point_up_2: - Curious to hear how OP calculated the $15k in equity.

So are you saying i should load up on spy calls

Being a casual options trader probably screwed my thinking on this. If you’re holding in the money options, financial parties will effectively deem that you own the shares, generally. Which is why in my head “I owned the car.”

This situation is one of the reasons I bought out our Tiguan early. Had a theoretical positive equity of $10k, assuming I could get sales tax refunded and $8800 or so eating the tax.

Ended up just buying and holding, since in the end, what I gained in equity is end up paying back buying a new car more or less and we’re happy enough with the Tiguan.

This is a real risk to all in an ongoing lease with a substantial amount of equity. And each need to decide whether to bite the bullet and capture the equity or let it ride and take the risk. In the unlikely event of a total loss, this is basically what could happen.


In another thread somebody just got $10k equity on an etron last week in LA while trading in for another etron.

Luxury market has gone to $#@! the past six months and will probably only get worse as interest rates rise.

Whoever put it in slow mode - an explanation would be nice. I’ll put it back, but for 1 hour.

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:point_up_2::point_up_2: - Curious to hear how OP calculated the $15k in equity.

The insurance paid out $64k and I owed ~$49k on it (buy out + remaining lease payments)? And I did get the car when Audi was giving them away in peak COVID shutdown May 2020 (effective net cost of $53k I believe).

Not exactly, most leases have gap insurance, or you may have it through your insurance provider. However, if your value was less than the payoff, and the lease does not have gap insurance (notably, TFS does not do this)… let’s not speculate on that rn.

I’m not it’s not the MOST outlandish thing Ive read this week.

It probably is possible, but perhaps the better question is, does one really want to find out what it’s like to fight LAPD legally about something that isn’t life or death?


Think of it this way, the moment the car suffered a total loss event, likely as per your contract your purchase option expired and you had not exercised it.

Holding the option has paper value, but if it gets voided, expires or is deemed null, then the paper value is evaporated.


I (arm chair QB with no legal knowledge) would say that the at fault party cut a check for the value of the vehicle. You were made whole for the loss of the car. How your payoff works is really not the at fault parties problem. To try and go back after them for the overage you should have gotten is them overpaying you for the loss you suffered. Highly unlikely this would work in any real world situation.

I agree with all the unfortunate points made, I think this said it best

If this is still true

In your situation, I might play the Good Samaritan and write a letter briefly framing what happened, and why you think it’s wrong/you were deprived. A city employee in a city vehicle hit you, caused a loss for which you don’t feel you were made whole (afs got yours), these sorts of clauses in leases contracts don’t seem fair, would you consider looking into whether they are allowed or should continue to be allowed given that many leases have equity now? Whatever point you’d want to make.

To: Insurance Company, AFS, CA Dept of Insurance, LA and CA AG.

We have unfortunately seen a lot of these, yours is one of the more compelling arguments because of how you incurred the loss, and you could potentially sue but won’t, and aren’t hypothetically coming at them asking for money, but to look more closely at this scenario. Obviously Audi is just getting CC’ed on a letter to a regulator (not theirs) and 2 AGs, one never knows if that might also shake something loose.


Really…that’s news to me.

As an in-the-money call option holder, I don’t get dividends, voting rights or invitations to their boring annual meetings. Nor do I get the annual reports, or am considered a shareholder by the company.

All I own is the right to buy the shares at a fixed price for a predetermined time period.


I think this is the only one of these threads I’ve seen where the OP took a step back and thought the situation through and found clarity


This “option” has an inherent dollar value in this case though, therefore the victim may be able to claim the loss of potential profit, which needs to be “probable and reasonably foreseeable.” There may be other conditions that the claim would need to meet though (I am not a lawyer).