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How Can I Stop My Car From Getting Repossessed?

Posted on Thursday, February 25th, 2016 at 8:57 am    

Car-Repossession-300x225A car is a necessity in modern life. We need to go to work, school, and home, and few of us live in walking distance. Therefore, the prospect of a car’s repossession is frightening. Once you finance or lease a car, your car lender has certain rights and remedies that come with the contract you sign. One remedy allows the lender to repossess your car if you default under the terms of your agreement. Your contract will specify what exactly constitutes a default but common examples include failing to make your payments or not having car insurance. Although many car owners assume they have grace period before repossession begins, the contract usually allows for repossession at the time of default.  Some Northern Kentucky car lots, such as Limited Motors, report that they offer at least a three week grace period to car owners in default before repossession begins.  However, often car lots will not guarantee a grace period and choose to exercise their repossession right quickly.

What Steps Should You Take If You Default on Your Loan?

If you are in default on your car loan and cannot make an immediate payment in full, you’ll want to take a few easy steps to avoid finding your car missing one morning. Your car loan lender can usually repossess your car without giving you any notice as long as the repossession does not breach the peace. “Breach the peace” is an important term, and generally means they cannot do anything illegal, including “disturbing the peace” by creating an argument with you or “breaking and entering” by going into your garage to take the vehicle. Repo men generally take cars at night when no one is around so no breach of the peace occurs. If you are in default and know or suspect a repossession is going to occur, considering doing the following:

1. Keeping the car in a garage.

2. Parking the car a distance away from your house and place of work, where it will not easily be found.

3. Parking the car in your backyard, where it cannot be seen from the road.

4. Asking a neighbor or friend to keep the car at their home, under a tarp or other cover.

Under any of these scenarios, you make it less likely that a repossession will occur because you prevent the repo man from finding or accessing the vehicle.

Filing Bankruptcy Ceases All Collection Attempts

A bankruptcy can help you to stop the repossession and even get your car back after repossession. When you file bankruptcy, the automatic stay goes into effect, which forces your creditors to cease all collection attempts against you. This means that your creditors cannot call you, continue with a lawsuit, repossess, sell, or foreclose on your property. With a few exceptions, you are completely protected by the bankruptcy and creditors must seek court permission before continuing their collection efforts.

If you are facing a repossession, you must choose a Chapter 13 bankruptcy in order to save the car. Your best bet is to file bankruptcy before the car is repossessed – if you do so, Lawrence & Associates can print a proof of bankruptcy filing for you that will prevent the repo man from taking your vehicle. Even if the car has been repossessed, you can get the car back if you file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy before the car is sold at auction. However, the timing of the auction is always in flux, so it can sometimes be difficult to get a bankruptcy filed and get notice to the lender before the auction occurs.

Hire Lawrence & Associates and Stop Repossession

Do you think your lender may try to take your car soon and you cannot afford to get caught up on your car payments? A bankruptcy may be your best option to stop repossession. Call Lawrence & Associates today! We’re Working Hard for the Working Class, and we can help you!


Keep Your Car: How You Can Stop the Repo Man

Posted on Wednesday, November 19th, 2014 at 3:32 pm    

Car RepossessionWhen times get tough, you may be hard-pressed to make mortgage or car payments. In Northern Kentucky, creditors don’t have to give you any written notice of their intent to repossess your car. They don’t even have to notify you that you are late on payments. There is no set number of months that you have to be behind on payments before they can try to repossess the vehicle. In Northern Kentucky, the average number of days a car owner is late prior to repossession of the vehicle tends to be sixty-nine, but that is not a law. Many creditors, especially buy-here, pay-here lots, tend to attempt repossession immediately after the first payment is missed. In fact, many creditors make their living by repossessing a vehicle as soon as possible, then selling the vehicle to a new person, over and over again.

Contact Your Creditor

First, be pro-active. If you call your creditor ahead of time and explain the situation, some of them will allow you a payment modification plan so you can catch up a missed payment or avoid getting behind altogether. This is especially true if you have good credit or a good payment history with that creditor. Another benefit of asking ahead of time is that you can gauge a creditor’s attitude before they have an opportunity to repossess. They can’t repossess if you haven’t missed a payment yet, but you can force them to tip their hand as to whether they would rather work out a payment plan, or rather repossess and re-sell your vehicle. Be aware that the creditor will want to know the reason you are late. If it is a one-time issue, they will be more likely to hold off on repossessing your vehicle than if you have a more long term issue, such as loss of a job.

Some Temporary Tips To Slow Down a Car Repossession 

If the creditor has already called the repo man, you can still buy time to catch up payments on the car. First, make sure your car is parked inside a garage somewhere. In Northern Kentucky, the repo man is not allowed to illegally enter a building to legally repossess a car. Second, if you have to drive your car and park it outdoors (such as at work), then don’t park it in the lot where you would normally park. Park it down the street and walk a bit. If the repo man can’t find the car, he can’t repossess it. Finally, park with your license plate facing the wall. In Northern Kentucky, cars aren’t required to have front license plates, and this means the front of your car is more anonymous than the back of the car. All of these steps are very temporary fixes. Eventually the creditor will file papers in court to force you to turn over the car, and violating a court order to turn the vehicle over will result in accusations of theft.

Bankruptcy Will Protect Your Vehicle

A Northern Kentucky bankruptcy lawyer can help you file a bankruptcy to protect the vehicle and other property. You can keep your car in a bankruptcy, even if you are behind on payments. Northern Kentucky bankruptcy attorneys can create of new payment plan with a creditor that they are forced to accept. The main benefit of bankruptcy, moreso than any other option, is that your car lender will no longer dictate the terms of payment. Instead, you will. Filing bankruptcy is often vilified by creditors, because in a bankruptcy you take the reins of your financial future and get a fresh start.

Lawrence & Associates can help you which option to take to stop the possibility of repossession today!

Contact Us (859.371.5997) for a Free Consultation

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