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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Attorney
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Experience:  Lawyer
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My husband co signed a car loan for my son on Oct. 12th (a

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My husband co signed a car loan for my son on Oct. 12th (a Saturday) and my son wasn't able to pick up the signed loan agreement until days later, after the dealer finance manager received certain documentation from my son (which he provided.) Now, 12 days later, the bank (Wells Fargo) had the finance manager re write the loan document and changed some terms of the agreement...specifically, making my husband the primary borrower on the loan, which adds his name to my son's title and registration, etc. which we did not want. We wanted my son to be able to rebuild his own credit and now this does nothing except to give us a new car loan. My question is, can the bank force us to sign the re written loan or do they have to abide by the original signed document?

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.

From a legal standpoint, there is no difference in what they are asking you to do. The loan will still show up on your son's credit, and it will still show up on your husband's. Even as a cosigner, your husband is legally responsible for ensuring that the payments on the loan are made, and he will be the one who is sued if they aren't (the cosigner is always the one that gets sued). The new loan will show on your credit either way. So, legally and practically, it does not make a difference.

Now, as far as whether they can make changes, the bank has to approve the loan. If they have already approved the loan and issued funding, they cannot change the terms after the fact. They are legally bound by the terms of the agreement they entered. If they have not already approved the loan and issued the funding, they can deny the loan and back out of the agreement.

Your husband and your son are legally obligated to the car dealer to make reasonable efforts to get a loan to finance the vehicle. If this loan falls through because he was refusing to be listed as the primary borrower instead of a cosigner, he would still be liable to the dealer for the full sales price of the vehicle. If it's not possible to get another loan elsewhere - and I'll be honest, most banks are going to want your husband to be listed as the primary borrower - they could get sued. Or, worse, you and your husband could have to pay for the car upfront to protect your credit.

If you have any questions or concerns about what I've written, please reply so that I may address them. It's important to me that you are 100% satisfied with the service I provide. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so that I get credit for answering your question. Thank you.
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