The Intricacies of the Automobile Repossession Procedure
When a lender finances a vehicle, they reserve the right to reclaim it if the agreed-upon repayment terms are not met. Each state's laws place restrictions on the ability of lenders to repossess vehicles. The repossession laws of the majority of states are modeled after Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC). According to Article 9, you must be in default on a loan before the repossession process can commence. In the loan repayment agreement, the definition of default will be disclosed. Most loans stipulate that a borrower is in default after missing one, two, or three payments. Once the loan is in default per the terms of the financial agreement, the lender has the right to repossess the vehicle. In most states, the lender may repossess the vehicle if the loan is 90 days delinquent. Please refer to the financial loan repayment agreement, which was signed by the car buyer, for details on the loan's terms and any possible repossession actions. The lender may collect the vehicle from (1) your residence, (2) your place of employment, or (3) any other location where it is being stored. In the majority of states, a lender may repossess a vehicle without a court order. Nevertheless, many state statutes stipulate that a vehicle can only be repossessed if the lender can do so without "disturbing the peace." The phrase "breach of peace" indicates that the lender can take possession of the vehicle without threatening the borrower or using force. A breach of the peace could be as simple as the borrower refusing to cooperate with the creditor. If threats or physical force are used to repossess a vehicle, the lender may be liable for any resulting damages. The lender must now seek judicial permission, document the default, and wait for the court to grant permission to reclaim the vehicle. Once the court grants permission to repossess the vehicle, the lender will likely request assistance from the local police. Once the creditor obtains possession of the automobile, they may elect to have it repaired prior to selling it. When the lender takes possession of the vehicle, they must notify the borrower of their intention to sell it. At this point, the only option available to the borrower would be to pay off the loan and any additional fees associated with reclaiming the vehicle. If the borrower chooses not to pay the loan and fees by the date specified, the car can be auctioned off. If the creditor sells the vehicle for less than the remaining loan balance, they may file a deficiency judgment against the borrower to collect the difference. The car must be sold commercially for the creditor to file a deficiency judgment against the borrower (no private sales). It is in the best interest of the borrower (defendant) to seek legal counsel for any legal matter, including a vehicle repossession.
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"The Intricacies of the Automobile Repossession Procedure"
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and updated on 14 January 2023