Forum Rules (Everyone Must Read!!!) (updated: 04/28/2015)

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Timeline for creditor action taken on car loan (pre BK)

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  • Timeline for creditor action taken on car loan (pre BK)

    I recently lost my job and we will likely have to file a chapter 7 unless I get a job very quickly (which is extremely unlikely).

    I have a question about our car. We bought it new last year and still owe $25k on it (it's only worth about $18k according to The payments are really high (over $600), so we don't want to keep it. We have to wait at least two months from now to file in order to pass the means test.

    We were planning on stopping paying our creditors from now until we file.

    How long can we expect to keep the car without making payments? IOW, will they repossess (before we file for BK) if we miss two car payments? What about three car payments?

    After we file BK, I'm under the impression that they can't repossess because of the automatic stay. However, they can repossess if they make an application to the court. How likely is that to happen?

    After the case is over (and presuming they didn't repossess during pendency), how long can we expect to have it until they finally repossess it? (I've read the thread about not keeping valuables in the car because they can repossess it at any time, but was wondering what general time frame.)

  • #2
    Sorry, but none of us can speak for your creditors. Just noway to answer those questions.


    • #3
      Just a very general answer, but you miss 2 payments, they might repo; miss 3 and it's very likely. If you still have the car after you file, they might have the stay lifted, they might wait until after discharge to repo. As Keepmine said, no way to tell, creditors are different and so are the cars (junk or valuable, etc.)

      So, once you stop paying, do keep all your personal items out of it, and just be prepared to find it gone one day. Or, you can voluntarily turn it in, and save yourself the worry about a possible 3am repo.


      • #4
        For B of A it's 60 days late. You can talk to them and get a 3 month suspension.

        Best of luck.


        • #5
          'Hub foolishly co-signed a car note for an acquaintance 'down on his luck'. As long as the acquaintance made his payments, everything was fine. Once he started missing/being late with payments, and then finally stopped paying altogether, WE started getting the dunning notices and nastygrams from the lender. 'Hub made this person surrender the car and it was sold at auction. 'Hub and the acquaintance were both sued for the difference--$13,000.00. We filed BK, and the acquaintance did not. We discharged the debt, and the acquaintance has the judgment.

          I would guesstimate that it was about 6-9 months from the time the car was surrendered, sold at auction, us sued, and the acquaintance got the default judgment.
          "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

          "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."


          • #6
            If you want to be sure that you'll still have the car for the duration of your bankruptcy--which is about 4 months--then I suggest you keep it paid up until the month you actually file. So, for example, if your payment is due on the 15th of the month, and you're planning to file in March, then your last payment should be the one due February 15. By the time you file, the March payment may be overdue, but by then, the automatic stay will kick in, and you can keep the car--payment-free--until the case is discharged. Of course, you MAY be able to get away with missing the February payment, but the lender MIGHT repossess before you file, or they might not.


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