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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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In the state of Mom recently passed away. Last

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In the state of Mom recently passed away. Last year, she financed a new car for me (in her name only). I called Captial One Auto Finance and explained that she passed away and could I assume the loan since I was already making the payments. They stated "no" they did not do that and that I had 30 to 40 days to pay it off. I explained that I could not pay it off. My question is....can I have them come and voluntarily take it back, would my Dad be responsible for repaying the loan?
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

Unfortunately, Nevada is a community property state. If you give back the car, your mom's estate would be primarily liable to the lender for any deficiency balance on the loan (difference between what they sell it for and loan balance) and your dad as her spouse would also be jointly liable with the estate for any deficiency. Thus, your dad could be liable for repayment of that balance if there are insufficient funds in your mom's estate to make the payment.

An alternative is selling the car yourself to get the most you can for it to pay it off or minimize the deficiency balance.

Another alternative, which I mention last because I presume that you could not qualify for the loan before which is why it is in only your mom's name, is you can seek to go to another lender and get a loan to pay this original lender off and continue to keep the car.

Legally, these are your alternatives.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you so much....that is what I thought. I called the dealership and they remembered my mom and myself. The finance manager told me to bring in the death certificate and they will work with me. Smiletitle="Smile"/> Thank You

Thank you for your response.

That would be the best if the dealer can work this out with you. The last thing you want to do is give your dad more headaches with a deficiency debt from turning in the car if you can at all avoid it.

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