As soon as you discover you can’t make your car payment or some other kind of secured loan payment, you should act swiftly. You need to do whatever you can to reduce the risk of having your property repossessed. One or two missed payments could be enough to put you on the list of a debt collector.
What if I don’t care if my property gets repossessed?
Many vehicle owners who are suffering from debt problems are under so much financial stress that they say, “I don’t care if my property gets repossessed.” However, this attitude is a mistake. Not only will your vehicle — or other property you used to secure the loan — be at risk of repossession. You will also be responsible for the repossession fees and late fees as well as the money still due on your loan. These costs can send you spiraling into even worse financial trouble.
Following a repossession, your credit rating will also suffer. Even if you manage to get your vehicle back, this information will remain on your credit history for seven years and interfere with your ability to get a loan for another vehicle.
You have rights when it comes to repossession
Even if the lender can take your vehicle, you still have certain legal rights. For example, the lender can come on your property to take your car, but they cannot break into your home or damage your property to reach your car. They can’t break locks or threaten you physically. The general rule of thumb is that the lender is not permitted to “breach the peace” in order to repossess your property.
Were you subjected to an unlawful repossession?
If you suspect that your property was repossessed unlawfully or that the peace was breached when your vehicle was taken, an experienced consumer rights attorney can provide valuable guidance