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Chris The Lawyer
Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer
Category: New Zealand Law
Satisfied Customers: 22885
Experience:  38 years qualified as a lawyer; LLB, MMgt and FAMINZ.
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I sold my car to a friend for $5000 he gave $2000 as a down

Customer Question

hi there i sold my car to a friend for $5000 he gave $2000 as a down payment and agreed to pay the rest at $200 weekly. he has not made any weekly payments and its been over 3 months now. he has the car but its still under my name so legally its still mine. am i able to get my car back?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: New Zealand Law
Expert:  Chris The Lawyer replied 2 years ago.

If you want to repossess the car for non-payment you have to have a written agreement under the consumer finance legislation. You can only repossess where this is a consumer finance contract, and since this was a private arrangement with your friend, you do not have the right to repossess. If you retrieve the car, he could complain that it has been stolen. It does not matter if the car is registered in your name, because the registration is not a title registration, but just a record to enable the licensing. When you sold the car, the title to the car passed to your friend. So if you went and repossessed the car, there would be some risk that he would complain to the police. I doubt they would do much about this because they would say it was a civil problem and not a criminal problem. You can protect yourself by registering your loan on the Personal Securities Register and the website for registering your loan is here

if you register your loan against the car he cannot sell it to anyone else until your loan is repaid. To recover the money you could also bring a claim in the disputes Tribunal and get an order for him to repay

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