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My Car Was Repossessed. Can I Get It Back if I File for Bankruptcy? – David

“Dear Steve,

I have a card which I owe $4,600 on. They garnished my bank account which had nothing back in April. I called them in April and told the collector I would be claiming bankruptcy by August as I came up with the $800-1200 for a lawyer.

My car was seized today which was co-signed by my mother and is worth about $8,000 though I owe about $9,000 on it.
Why did they not garnish my paycheck?

Is my mom at risk if the car is auctioned?

If the car is auctioned with the full auto loan be paid off or just what they sell it for?

When will they come back to seize something else? After they sell the car?

I am contacting a bankruptcy lawyer ASAP.

How long before I can get my car back after starting the bankruptcy process?

Thanks in advance.


Dear David,

If you want to keep the car you should talk to your bankruptcy attorney about filing bankruptcy immediately. You may be able to get it back if you act fast. If you need a bankruptcy attorney you can click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney.

They will repossess the vehicle when you default on the loan. The car will be sold at auction and show up as a negative item on your credit report and your cosigners. The car will sell for a fraction of the loan value and the lender will come after you and the cosigner for the total balance due.

The balance will wind up being almost all that you owe now. With a repossession you wind up with the debt but not the car.

The lender can sue you or the cosigner for the balance and if permitted in your state, even garnish your wages.

Call the bankruptcy attorney now and talk to them about the process in your state for recovering your car. You will need to bring you car loan current and make all the regular payments to keep the car even in bankruptcy. Since your mother is on the hook for this loan you might want to let her know what is going on. She might want to assist you in this process to prevent this debt from landing on her.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

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About Steve Rhode

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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