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MStrisik, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 288
Experience:  General practitioner; former litigator.
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I cosigned a car loan when I was married & then got divorced

Resolved Question:

I cosigned a car loan when I was married & then got divorced in Indiana, without addressing the loan. Without my knowledge, my exwife turned the car in. I now have a letter from the financing company wanting my payment of $21,000.00. My ex says she has never heard anything from them since returning the car. She is currently employed but about to file bankruptcy. My job is being eliminated after the end of the year. My question is: what are my options at this point?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  MStrisik replied 8 years ago.



First, has it been less than 30 days since your divorce? If so, either party can file a Motion for New Trial. If not, then you will need to review your decree. Some Decrees attach the financial disclosure as a means of awarding property so that assets that are not disclosed are not awarded and are subject to future division. Some Decrees have a paragraph at the end that says something to the effect that all assets not disclosued are either awarded to the other party or are subject to future division." You will want to look to see if that paragraph exists in your Decree. The type of financial disclosure done will also come into play. In a sworn inventory and appraisement, you are stating that failure to disclose is not intentional and you are not waiving your right in any assets. Also, you both had a right to conduct discovery so that each side had knowledge of the assets.


M. Strisik, Esq.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
We did not have lawyers involved. It was a mutual agreement that we would split up the assets. I sold the house and she was to pay on the car as she has possesion. Is there anything I can do beside file bankruptcy on the car loan?
Expert:  MStrisik replied 8 years ago.

I see.


If you can establish that the loan was part of the marital estate, then you can write a demand letter to her asking for half of the payment. I'm sure you have the loan documented so it is worth a shot. You might be able to save the bankruptcy if you can cut the debt in half.


Please let me know if I can further assist.

M. Strisik, Esq.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
She has the papers on the loan. I would like possesion of the car so that it may be sold, is it within my rights to ask for this. Would obtaining legal assistance in IN be of any help to me, other than to write her a letter asking for 1/2 the debt? The divorce was final in early 2006. We bought the car a couple of years before that. Does she not have responsibility for this and would the bankruptcy absolve her of the debt?

Expert:  MStrisik replied 8 years ago.

It depends when the car was turned in by your ex-wife. She can be held responsible for conversion or other form of theft under Indiana law. Yes, you absolutely should discuss this with Indiana counsel. Especially seeing as though your ex-wife turned the car in without your knowledge. If you were still married, this would have been a constructive fraud. Since you were divorced and the property was legally yours, it is likely to be considered a conversion offense.


I think the bankruptcy is jumping the gun. You should get an opinion from an IN practitioner first.

I hope this helps. If so, please accept. Let me know if I can help further.

Best regards,

M. Strisik, Esq.

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