Harrisonville car lot owner sells vehicles but never hands over titles, customers say

HARRISONVILLE, Mo. -- A metro family had planned to take a road trip to Tennessee this month, but that’s on indefinite hold -- all because of a Harrisonville car lot owner who isn’t following the law.

Tracy Vunovich and her husband purchased a 2012 Buick Enclave from Super Auto Sales in Harrisonville in January. Although it’s paid for in a full, the family can’t legally drive the car because they’ve never been given the title and can’t get it registered and licensed.

“It is one excuse after another,” said Vunovich, referring to Derrick and Tracy Supernaw, the husband and wife owners of Super Auto Sales. “Now they say they've lost it. “

Vunovich isn’t the only customer having problems with Super Auto Sales. Alicia Douglas has been waiting more than two months for a clear title to her vehicle.

“You can tell in my voicemails (to the car lot) I'm more and more frustrated and I can't even get a call back,” said Douglas who is pregnant with her second child.

Douglas won’t even drive the car because she’s afraid of being pulled over on the way to work.

FOX4 Problem Solvers paid Super Auto Sales a visit, hoping to get answers. But owner Derrick Supernaw wasn’t helpful.

Super Auto Sales

“First of all I don't have permission to talk to you about customers' cars,” Supernaw claimed. “I'm sure you know customer confidentiality laws.”

Yes, FOX4 Problem Solvers is aware of the law. But there is no law that prevents Supernaw from sharing why he has failed to give customers’ titles.

We suggested Supernaw could call the customer to get their permission to talk to us if he was concerned about their privacy. But he refused.

FOX4 asked Supernaw why any customer would fail to be given a title to a car he sold them. Supernaw claimed their were multiple reasons that could happen and would investigate and contact us later with an explanation.

He never did.

Attorney Blaine Elliott said Supernaw has a lot of explaining to do. Elliott is representing eight clients without titles -- all of whom bought vehicles from Super Auto Sales. Some have been waiting more than six months.

Although selling a car without a title is illegal in Missouri, it happens all the time.

Elliott had this advice on how not to become a victim of an unscrupulous car dealer selling cars without titles. In Missouri car dealers have to provide the title, the same day they hand over the keys to the car.

“The only way you can avoid a situation like this is you just demand to see the title,” Elliott said.

And don’t let a dealer show you a copy of the title, he said. Demand to see the actual title before you agree to buy the car.

So where are all the missing titles at Super Auto Sales?

Although we couldn’t get an answer from the owners, Vunovich told FOX4 that the Supenaws finally admitted to her that they owe about $1 million for nearly all the cars on their lot. The loan holder refuses to release the titles to them until they repay the loan.

So this is a problem that definitely isn’t solved. The only good news we have to report is that Alicia Douglas and her husband were finally able to get their title
problems resolved after making a surprise visit to the car lot.

If you have a complaint against Super Auto Sales, we recommend you contact the Missouri Department of Revenue Dealer Licensing Division and the Attorney General’s office.