Tips to Handle the Blame Game in F&I Compliance Situations

Tips to Handle the Blame Game in F&I Compliance Situations

Compliance issues at the dealership will always be a concern looming in the background of every F&I deal. The risk of something fraudulent happening in a deal is something that F&I has to be prepared for and be actively watching for every day.

There is never an excuse to overlook a compliance issue but how does a dealership manage the inevitable excuses that can come with the discovery? What dealer solutions can be put in place to help make sure this doesn’t impact the dealership reputation?

Here are 3 quick tips to handle the blame game in F&I compliance –

  • Immediate Action: If the F&I manager is caught engaging in a compliance violation and they try to blame the sales desk or anyone else, be sure to immediately verify that the issue was with them, not another staffer. It’s easy for people who are caught being sloppy on a deal to pass the buck. Shut it down and review compliance procedures to try to avoid it happening again. And if it does….well that goes without saying.
  • Fill-In’s Fault: When busy stores have F&I managers out on vacation or just off for a few days in a row, temporary managers may come in to complete deals for a few days. If the deal goes South from a compliance perspective, it’s easy to blame the temp. If it truly is their fault, the first thing that must be examined is the vetting process for the F&I staff provider used. Do they have ongoing compliance training and certification? What are the qualifications for general knowledge?
  • Blaming Sales: If the desk is blamed for a compliance issue, there are bigger issues at play. If the F&I managers claim that they have no choice but to do the deal because the sales desk said so, that’s a big problem. Sales managers can try their best to patch a deal together but F&I must be empowered to be that last line of due diligence to say ‘No’. The buck should stop with them to not allow an illegal deal to go through.

F&I has an enormous responsibility to make every deal airtight and in step with all state and Federal compliance. They must be empowered to take it seriously and push back when they see something is wrong and not be scared to speak up. A robust compliance review training and update every few months will help make sure these issues don’t become the norm.

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