Ask The Get Out of Debt Experts Co-Signing

I Cosigned for a Car for a Guy I Was Dating. – Kate

“Dear Steve,

I cosigned for a car when I was 19 with a guy I was dating at the time. Since then he stopped paying for the car and it was sent to collections. I was in contact with the guy for a while but since it was sent for collections, he has disappeared with the car. I don’t know how to go about this. The banks attorney mailed me the other day and said that I owed 13000 for the car and if I don’t pay it off then he is going to take me to court. I don’t have this money to pay this off.

Is there anything I can do about this? I don’t know where the guy is or car so I can’t even give the car back to reduce the money owed. What should I do? Please help


Dear Kate,

I’m trying to think of a delicate way to say “you’re screwed” but can’t come up with one.

When you cosign you are guaranteeing the payment on the loan if the other person does not pay. He did not pay so the lender is exercising the obligation you signed for, to pay.

The only way to legally kill that obligation is going to be with your bankruptcy. Otherwise you are going to have to come up with a payment plan for the debt. They will probably sue you, you will lose and they will move ahead with a judgment and potential wage garnishment.

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Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

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