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Can a car still be reposed after the loan has been charged off for over a year.

Sellersburg, IN |

I filed bankruptcy and included my car. I requested the bankruptcy be dismissed and called the finance company and told them to come and pick up the car. They never came for the car. The bankruptcy was dismissed in April of 2011. I received an email from the finance company on Aug. 11, 2011, telling me to contact them. On Aug. 12, 2011, the finance company charged off the loan and reported it to my credit. I have not talked with them again until Sept. of 2012. They confirmed the loan was charged but stated they are now looking for the car. Dept. of motor vehicles said they cannot take the car because the loan would have been taken off of their corporate taxes. Can they still come and take it after charging off the loan?

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Attorney answers 4


As long as it has not been paid and they have the title, it can still be repossessed. If you have the title, then it is safe. If you do not have the title, then it will be difficult for you to ever get rid of it.



Here is where I have a problem with all of this tho. I paid $21,900.00 for the car. I paid $500.00 a month for nearly 4 years of the 6 year contract. The finance company has now reported on my credit that $21,900.00 has been charged off. If I refile the bankruptcy, then I have to pay full price all over again.


The lien on the vehicle was not affected by your discharge. You don't get to keep a car for free just because you file a bankruptcy case. They ate entitled to repossess.



I wasn't trying to keep it for free. I told them several times where the car was and where to come and get it. The bankruptcy was dismissed, not discharged. Why does it show it's charged off then? How many times should I have to say come and get it?


If you are correct that a lender cannot repo a car after a charge off because of the tax code in your state, then you should send a letter to the creditor demanding that they release their lien and send you the title. Filing a bankruptcy that got dismissed does not affect the rights or obligations of anyone. Otherwise, you should try to find a lawyer to help you or surrender the car.

This response is intended to give a general overview of the law and should not be treated as legal advice. There are too many factual issues and exceptions in the law to provide definitive conclusions about your circumstances.



As a rule of thumb, legal advice from the DMV is generally not very solid. Charge-offs don't change this secured creditor's remedies or rights. You have their collateral and they have the right to get it back. Best advice: arrange for a convenient pickup of the vehicle, and whatever you do, do not hide it or otherwise try to thwart, impair or otherwise hinder the rights of the creditor.



I have tried to get them to come and pick it up and they will not. I was only asking because I wasn't sure what to do. I know I can refile the bankruptcy and include the car again. My issue is that I paid $21,900.00 for the car and paid $500.00 a month for nearly 4 tears. The charge off is for $21,900.00 and not for the remainder of what I owe. When I first filed bankruptcy, I was 3 months shy of being able to have the balance of the car reduced to book value. Then when I asked that the bankruptcy be dismissed, the finance company still refused to pick up the car and charged off the loan a month after it was dismissed. I'm not trying to get out of paying what I owe, however after paying $500.00 a month for nearly 4 years and the balance has never gone down according to them, I have no choice but to refile and include the car again.

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