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My Dad Passed Away and I Can’t Afford His Boat Payment. – Kristy

“Dear Steve,

I live in the state of Virginia. I’m 20 years old. In March I lost my dad and was forced to put his boat in my name. The payoff is $14,000 I only work part time and haven’t made a payment for three months. I have other debts (credit cards, hospital bills ect.) I am about $25,000 in debt total. If I were to file for bankruptcy would I be forced to give up the boat? It’s very sentimental and I really don’t want to lose it! Would filing bankrupt pay it off along with my other debts? If not, what options do I have, I can barely afford living let alone a boat!


Dear Kristy,

I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of your father.

The bad news is if you do nothing the lender will reposes it.

The bigger issue here is the finance agreement. Even if you were to bring the payments current again, will the finance company allow you to keep the boat since the responsible party has died? That I don’t know. You’d need to ask them.

The only option I see is if you went bankrupt on your debts and that left you the ability to make the boat payments. If you think that would work them you should click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney to talk to.

If you want to try to save the boat from repossession you will need to act fast. With payments that far behind it might only be a matter of days before the lender seizes the boat.

Please update me on your progress by posting updates here in the comments section of your question. I’m very interested in how this works out for you.


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

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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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