Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Timeshares
March 20, 2023 2:38 AM - Season 10, Episode 5 - Subscribe

This week... it's slightly possible that maybe it could occur that Trump will be arrested soon, and he seems to be taking it "well." The fallout from the failure of Silicon Valley Bank continues. And Now: For St. Patrick's Day, Local News Did What They Always Fucking Do. The main story is on timeshares (on Youtube, 26 minutes), or as they're sometimes rebranded now, "Vacation Clubs," or "Vacation Ownership Plans." People are pressured to buy them on vacation, salespeople have diminished responsibility when they lie about them, and 85% of timeshare buyers come to regret their purchase, which are often subject to a "non-cancellable perpetuity clause," that can be an outright burden on the people they're left to in estates if they don't fire a disclaiming document within nine months. As the show tells us, timeshares suck, and companies that claim they can get you out of timeshares suck more. The show welcome's back John's "wife," Wanda Jo Oliver, to tell us about her new "company," Timeshare Exit2, which "has over 9.3 billion customers, and a 200% satisfaction rate!"

F.37: "Thespius Ubiquitous," LANCE REDDICK, who passed away on the 17th.
posted by JHarris (9 comments total)
Of all the subjects that LWT has covered, many are infuriating for how easily a motivated and functional government could just FIX them, but I don't think any are quite as infuriating as this. Basically companies have found a way that, if you make a mistake, you're not only locked into a huge recurring personal expense for little benefit that will follow you to your grave with little hope to escape it, but also to your childrens' graves if they don't disclaim the inheritance.

A simple law could destroy this whole disgusting morass. Why doesn't it? Because there's this huge media thing in the US that Republicans have built around making the government unable to fucking do anything.
posted by JHarris at 9:18 AM on March 20, 2023 [2 favorites]

My mom got talked into buying a timeshare like at least 10-15 years ago (I forget) because "all the family is doing it," she's used it ONCE ever, I'll be stuck with it forever. I once got dragged (like "WE ARE COMING OVER TO GET YOU RIGHT NOW"), driven in an anonymous van to some creepy manufacturing district, and they would not let us go until she gave them money. Period. It was a token $100 she had to pay to get them to let us leave, and they said she could ask for it back, but still.

I also note that I read somewhere in the time share paperwork that they aren't supposed to (????) sell to single people, which my mom was at the time because her husband had died. I doubt that's anything anyone can use as a loophole.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:48 AM on March 20, 2023 [1 favorite]

posted by porpoise at 5:57 PM on March 20, 2023 [3 favorites]

I'm a bit confused about the inheritance. Your debts do not pass to your children, student loan debt does not pass to your children, how is a timeshare allowed to be passed? How can someone be a party to a contract that they did not agree to?

I understand the contract and asset would be part of the estate, but you aren't required to accept an inheritance. Even in the case of a house with some debt attached, you can still refuse to take the house (and thus the debt)
posted by LizBoBiz at 5:11 AM on March 22, 2023 [1 favorite]

You can refuse to accept the timeshare too, but you have to disclaim it within nine months according to the episode. And if you do, it passes to the next in line, who has to disclaim it too.
posted by JHarris at 8:41 AM on March 23, 2023

What happens if I'm the last in the line and have nobody to pass an inherited timeshare to?
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:06 AM on March 23, 2023

I think, in that case, it is finally, finally dissolved. IANAL though.
posted by JHarris at 3:51 PM on March 23, 2023 [1 favorite]

But this seems like its more a problem for the executor than the heir? Do people inherit things without knowing? Someone has to tell you, and you would have to accept I would think. But I never actually have inherited anything or had to go through that process so maybe I've got it all wrong.
posted by LizBoBiz at 2:05 AM on March 24, 2023

I don't know either, but LWT is exhaustively researched, so presumably what they said is accurate, and that's where the nine months figure comes from.
posted by JHarris at 10:28 PM on March 24, 2023

« Older Swarm: All Episodes...   |  Shadow and Bone: Once more int... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments