Bankruptcy Law Questions? Ask a Bankruptcy Lawyer Now.
Thank you for the additional information.
My husband and I are going to start the bankruptcy process after careful thought.....one of our cars (the best one) is collateral (the financial institution has our title, we have not signed it over to them) for secured loan that we got to stay afloat. We have stopped paying this debt as advised, but we are afraid they will take the car.....our attorney said that once we go through the means test, we can ask the creditor to call their office and that we are in the process of bankruptcy, but the creditor can take our car up until the time the attorney has filed with the court. We are having a hard time with money and can't make the whole payment to the attorney to file with the court. Could you give me your advice? By the way, the car is not worth a whole lot now, has over 125,000 miles and needs about $2,000 work. I understand that we will probably have to pay these people something after bankruptcy, but I'm not worried about that.
I am concerned mostly about the car up until the time the bankruptcy is filed, this is the only means of transportation for my husband's work, do we have to hide this car until that time, will he not be able to go to his place of work (he doesn't do that very often, he works out of our home and makes sales calls on a daily basis. Do they follow him?
Response: The advise that you have been given is wrong. Filing for bankruptcy does not protect your car from repossession, if you do not pay the debt as this is a secured debt. In addition, if you file for Chapter7 and are behind on the payment, the lender would file a motion for relief from the automatic stay to get permission from the Bankruptcy Court to repossess the car since you are late on your payment. You can hide the car from the lender in the meantime. However, if you are not up to date with your payment even if when you file for bankruptcy protection, the car would be repossessed by the lender. The only difference is that once you file for bankruptcy protection, the lender cannot repossess the car without first asking the Bankruptcy Court for permission to repossess the car (motion for relief from the automatic stay). In order to save the car, you need to bring the payment up to date. Otherwise, you would lose the car in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
The repo man may and can repossess the car wherever he finds it so long as he does not breach the peace--meaning that he does not get into struggle or argument with your husband when he is attempting to repossess the car.
Finally, calling the lender that you are filing for bankruptcy would not starve off repossession. The only thing that can save the car from being repossessed is to bring the payments up to date.
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