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socrateaser
socrateaser, Lawyer
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Is there anyway to stop repossession of business equipment

Resolved Question:

Is there anyway to stop repossession of business equipment even if it is used as collateral. I have been working with a turnaround company for 8 months and actually for 2 years with the leasing company to pay my debt. The leasing company is dragging their feet and just now I had a repossession company show up to take some of my equipment. Is there anything I can do? If my equipment gets repossessed I might have to shut my doors and 8 people will lose their jobs.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  socrateaser replied 6 years ago.

A "chattel" repossession (personal property, equipment, etc.) must be made without causing a "breach of the peace" (meaning no threat of physical violence). Otherwise, the sheriff/police can be called, and the repo personnel arrested.

 

So, if you lock your doors and refuse to permit entry, then the company must generally get a court order for a writ of attachment by the sheriff, so that no breach of the peace can occur -- which takes time and costs money.

 

Assuming that this were to occur, you could purchase a "redelivery bond" which permits you to retain the property until the lawsuit claiming the property in default is complete -- which takes more time.

 

And, you could file a Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which would give you even more time, but could get pretty expensive. Though, it may be worth it to you to contact a business bankruptcy lawyer to see whether it's worth the cost.

 

That about covers it. For a bankruptcy attorney referral, see: http://www.abanet.org/legalservices/lris/directory/main.cfm?id=MT and www.martindale.com.

 

Hope this helps.

 

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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I know this is probably being redundant, but if I say no, you are not taking my equipment, they are forced to get a court order? At this point I just need to try and by time so I can research my options. I was also told that filing Chapter 11 is for the "big" companies. I am a small shop with 8 employees, do I not have an option? I should be able to restructure my company the same way a larger company would, right?
Expert:  socrateaser replied 6 years ago.

Not redundant at all. You're entitled to know your rights. Chapter 11 is for large organizations, primarily because the legal and administrative fees can quickly run up a $25,000 bill for the simplest case. I'm not saying that yours will absolutely be that costly, but, there is a lot of negotiating and legal pleading that goes with the Chapter 11, and it costs money.

 

Re your telling the repo company to get out, things must get a little more strained than that -- which is why I suggested that you may want to lock your doors to any public access, and maybe give keys to the employees, so that they can get in when required.

 

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