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Terry L.
Terry L., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 2496
Experience:  Better Business Bur 15yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar
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Our state law allows us to continue to make car payments and

Customer Question

Our state law allows us to continue to make car payments and avoid repossession after bankruptcy without reaffirming the debt, but I don't know how I should state this in the new Form 8 (Debtor's Statement of Intention.)

Do I simply check "other" and for the explanation say I will continue to make payments?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  Terry L. replied 4 years ago.
Unfortunately, the bankruptcy code does not permit ride thru's...what you described here. If you want to keep the car, you should reaffirm the debt.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I have been told by two different lawyers in Massachusetts that reaffirmations of car loans are very rare in this state because of the strong consumer protection against repossession if you contue to make payments.

Also, the bank has inflated the loan amount on their proposed reaffirmation agreement and time is running out to get a corrected one filed.
Expert:  Terry L. replied 4 years ago.
For maximum protection, you should reaffirm the debt. Otherwise, you have to rely on that state law.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
It's been 32 days since the creditors' meeting and the bank is very slow and unresponsive. It looks like it simply may not be possible to reach a reaffirmation agreement in time. Reaffirmation may not be an option.
Expert:  Terry L. replied 4 years ago.
Without a reaffirmation, you are technically not on the hook anymore for the payments, and can surrender the vehicle at any time if you choose to. If the lender is accepting payments, then you can continue to pay. You will not get credit on your credit report for timely payments though without a reaffirmation.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
My questions was (and you might want to refer to it) how do I fill out Form 8 (I will have to amend it) if I can't or decide not to reach a reaffirmation agreement with the bank.
Expert:  Terry L. replied 4 years ago.
As I said, You should select reaffirm, as there is no Ride Thru selection.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Well, I've already checked reaffirm, but the "pro se" clerk at the court says I will have to amend the form if we don't reach an agreement with the bank.
Expert:  Terry L. replied 4 years ago.
Unless your jurisdiction has a local rule, I have not amended statement of intentions, since your intention was the same. Ask the clerk what to check then, since there is no selection for a ride thru, only reaffirmation, redemption (buying the vehicle outright- not doing that) or surrender, which you want to keep the car, so that shouldn't apply either.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
The 12/08 version of the form has "Other"
Expert:  Terry L. replied 4 years ago.
You would need to put local case law to support other.
Ride thru is specifically not included in the bankruptcy code.
There is no basis for using OTHER, I have not done so in the 11 years of practice. Do so at your own peril.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I need help from someone who has experience in a state where this question applies. I don't know what I have to do to get answers from other experts.
Expert:  Terry L. replied 4 years ago.
If you do not like my answer, that is fine, although I believe it to be correct. Talk to the help desk at the bankruptcy court for assistance.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I'm looking for another expert with experience in how to keep a car without reaffirming the loan using state law that prohibits repossession without default, and specifically what to enter on the new (12/08 version) of the official Form 8 (i.e. check "other" and what to enter in the explanation.)

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