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After a repo, how long does it typically take for someone to be sued?

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    After a repo, how long does it typically take for someone to be sued?

    I have a leased Honda Civic that is inevitably going to be repossessed as I've stopped making the payments on it and won't be able to file in time to have the automatic stay protect me. How long after a repossession does it typically take before someone is sued (and a judgment awarded) for the deficiency amount? The car is worth far less than I owe on it, so my guess is that the deficiency amount is going to be quite large, and since I'm someone who is filing for bankruptcy I don't really have thousands of dollars lying around to cover the amount.

    Any input would be greatly appreciated.

    #2
    Two of my friends had cars repo'd and both were sued after little over a year. Both were sued by Asset Acceptance (which is a junk debt buyer, in case you didn't know) rather than the original finance companies. Remember that it takes time for the car to be sold, for the original creditor to make an attempt to collect on any deficiency balance, and for the debt to be sold to a JDB. After the JDB buys it, they are going to send a dunning letter, attempt to negotiate a payment plan, etc. before suing.

    If you are planning to file within a year, you should be fine, unless you own a house which has positive equity, in which case you might be sued sooner. Creditors LOVE to sue people who have real estate which they can slap a lien on. If you rent your home, legal action will be a last resort, so I wouldn't be too worried at this time.

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      #3
      'Hub foolishly co-signed on a loan for an acquaintance for an automobile, because this person had bad credit and ours was 'golden' at the time. When this person started defaulting on the payments--and started REFUSING to make payments, 'Hub insisted that he surrender the car, which was then picked up. After the car was sold at auction, both 'Hub and the acquaintance were sued for the difference--about 13k--that was left on the loan.

      That process took about nine months. We answered the summons, and appeared in court, and were set to go to Arbitration. But we filed BK before that date, and discharged that debt. The acquaintance did nothing, and ended up with a 13K judgment.
      "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

      "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."

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        #4
        Thanks for the answer, both of you. It sounds like I have a little bit of time before anything major happens, and my lawyer has indicated something similar.

        I have, however, removed anything of value from the car in case they decide to come take it at 3am.

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          #5
          These days, lenders often check if suing the individual is actually worth it in the first place. I had two repos in the past with very significant deficiencies (one was more than $40K and the other about $15K). Neither of them sued me.

          In fact, only one of the endless list of creditors I had felt the need to sue me. My mother, however, was sued by five creditors. The difference is that she owns a house and I don't - so that made a difference. A judgment is far more effective if the individual who is sued owns something of value. Judgments cost money so even creditors think twice how much sense it would make to sue.
          Filed CH7 9/24/2010, 341 on 10/28/2010, Disch.&Closed: 1/6/2011. FICO EX: 9/2: 672.
          FICO EQ: pre-filing: 573, After BK Public Record: 568, 10/3: 673.
          FICO TU: pre-filing: 589, After BK Public Record: 563, 9/2: 706.

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            #6
            Originally posted by IBroke View Post
            These days, lenders often check if suing the individual is actually worth it in the first place. I had two repos in the past with very significant deficiencies (one was more than $40K and the other about $15K). Neither of them sued me.

            In fact, only one of the endless list of creditors I had felt the need to sue me. My mother, however, was sued by five creditors. The difference is that she owns a house and I don't - so that made a difference. A judgment is far more effective if the individual who is sued owns something of value. Judgments cost money so even creditors think twice how much sense it would make to sue.
            Yeah, I don't think it'd be worth their while to sue me. I do bring in an income, but I support myself and two (soon to be three) other people, so my disposable income is basically zero. I don't own my house, nor do I have anything else worth enough to not be covered by an exemption. I have another car, but we are way upside down on the loan for it, so there's negative equity there.

            My parents filed last year. They had stopped paying a couple of years ago and only one of their creditors ever sent them a nasty letter (and it wasn't even a summons, just a "pay us or else" kind of thing). They make way more than I do and had a lot more debt.

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              #7
              Originally posted by wellnowwhat View Post
              Thanks for the answer, both of you. It sounds like I have a little bit of time before anything major happens, and my lawyer has indicated something similar.
              Yes, you do have a bit of time. The key is to answer the summons and appear in court. If you ignore the summons, then the Plaintiff is almost always awarded a 'default judgment' against you. And that happens within almost a 30 day period.

              Answer the summons. That means appear in court, as well as file a response. My recommendation is to plead: "I neither admit, or deny this debt".

              Then you likely will be sent to Arbitration. That is where you (your attorney) will meet with the Plaintiff's attorney to set up a repayment plan.

              Arbitration only takes place once a month in our civil court district. We were going to be out of town on the date the judge set, so we spoke up and said so. [This was true.] The judge then set the date for Arbitration to happen one month later.

              By then, we had filed, and all the Plaintiff's efforts were moot.
              "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

              "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."

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