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

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New Car before Ch 13

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  • New Car before Ch 13


    Earlier this year I traded in a truck I had (with a high payment) for a small 2017 chevrolet sonic, in an effort to save money and avoid bankruptcy... At the time I wasn't even thinking I would end up considering bankruptcy... nonetheless, that was 6 or 7 months ago; and i'm getting ready to file Ch 13. I would really prefer to get a more comfortable family friendly vehicle; The legal office i'm going to told me they see no problem with me trading in that vehicle for a larger car (as long as its nothing outlandish) before filing... I have a meeting with them next week to discuss this more in detail; but I was wondering if anyone had experience with a similar situation; I would be taking a big hit with negative equity, as I would be trading in a car i've only owned for a few months; but considering whatever car I have when the ch 13 starts is what i'll be using for the next 5-6 years +, it is something I want to explore...


  • #2
    It is very common to finance a car before filing Chap 13. I bought one a month before filing. Over half of my plan payments went to pay off the car. It was not an issue at all. I have heard of many others doing the same and have never heard of there being an issue.

    One of the questions I had to answer on a questionnaire I filled out when I picked up the car was whether I planned to file bankruptcy. I had to lie on that, but it never came up. Since my plan provided that the car loan be paid in full, there was no reason for the lender to complain.

    LadyInTheRed is in the black!
    Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
    $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!


    • #3
      Thank you;

      My only concern is that it may look bad to the judge; That I bought a new car earlier this year, and now I'm trading that car in again for another new car (and incurring a higher car payment) right before filling. I'm currently paying for my wife's SUV, $550 a month, and then $325 for my vehicle... but that will surely go up to the $450 to $500 range for almost any "reasonable" vehicle i've been looking at. Been looking at vehicles with big rebates to eat up some of the negative equity... The legal assistant did mention something about try to stay under $1000 for total of both car payments...
      Last edited by ogz; 11-05-2017, 06:21 PM.


      • #4
        I purchased a new car about 3 months before I filed - I wanted to make sure I had something dependable for the next 5 years. I had two vehicles when I filed and the trustee didn't blink an eye (I was turning a lease back in and not reaffirming). The only thing my attorney said was make sure my monthly payment didn't exceed the Federal monthly allowance for a car payment; which was slightly over $500/month at the time. Sounds like that's why your attorney said to keep it around $1000 monthly for both car payments.

        The trustee knows that you have to have a car to work and complete the payments of your plan, so as long as you follow the guidelines you will be fine.


        • #5
          Well, I met with my lawyer this week and she said it was perfectly fine to change my car before we file. However on my wife's SUV (that is also under my name) she recommended we just surrender it since we're quite upside down on it.... She told us to buy a new vehicle and then stop paying on the other one and surrender it... I've done some googling on how the process works, but my wife is terrified "Something will go wrong" and we'll end up with three car payments to deal with. I'm just wondering, since its being done as part of the bankruptcy, does the lawyer handle the whole arrangement of turning in the vehicle for us, or do have to do it... how does the typical process work?


          • #6
            As long as you get a discharge, nothing will go wrong. After you stop paying on the old car you can just leave it parked in front of your house and wait for repo. You can also call the lender and tell them you can't make payments anymore and invite them to come get it or offer to deliver it to them.
            LadyInTheRed is in the black!
            Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
            $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!


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