7 On Your Side: Car dealership leaves student on brink of repo

ROCKAWAY (WABC) -- A nursing student was forced to make payments on a car he no longer owned, and it nearly ruined his credit. The bank was just seconds away from repossessing the car, which was already at the impound lot when 7 On Your Side stepped in.

Graduate nursing student Abdul Bassit says his life is on hold because of a botched trade-in.

"I don't know if I can go to school next semester," he said.

His credit score tanked because of his old car, with Abdul being blamed for missing his monthly payments. Except he sold his Sentra to Five Towns Nissan last summer.

"They were supposed to pay my bank $18,000," he said.

Abdul says Five Towns Nissan promised to pay over and over again but never sent the payment. Then the dealership, still listed on Yelp, sold out.

The student, already swimming in debt, started making payments again, all for a car he doesn't even own anymore.

So Eyewitness News went looking for Abdul's car.

The new manager of the business that bought out Five Towns, Rockaway Nissan GM Ramzey Rizk, helped us track down Abdul's car and put us in touch with man he says left several cars in limbo.

Alex Korchmar, the former manager of Five Towns Nissan, said his company never recovered from taking a huge losses on cars wrecked by Superstorm Sandy.

Finally, Korchmar made a promise to pay on the spot.

"Once again, we will pay the bank within 48 hours," he said.

One hitch. The car was being repossessed as we spoke to him.

The new GM quickly made calls to the bank, successfully preventing the repossession and saving Abdul's credit score.

"He was just at the wrong place at the wrong time when he bought this car," Rizk said.

But the time was right this time. The bank finally got the payoff, plus Abdul got his car payments refunded.

"It's like a weight off my shoulders," he said. "Amazing."

The attorney for Five Towns Nissan says there is no more money in their account to pay out, but he is hoping to recover insurance money for cars he says were lost during Sandy. Before trading in a car with underlying financing, make sure you get the particulars of the deal in writing, signed by both parties. And stay on top of the dealership to get them to pay it off promptly.

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