Know Your Rights
Have you fallen behind on your car loan, boat loan, truck loan, ATV loan, or motorcycle loan? Auto loans are considered secured as there is a tangible item attached to them. When you fail to make timely payments, lenders have the legal freedom to seize your vehicle as a form of payment. Not only is a repossession damaging to your credit report, but you are often left without transportation as you struggle to reclaim your vehicle.
If you believe repossession is a possibility as a result of your payment delinquency, get in touch with a seasoned Louisiana bankruptcy attorney. Through Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may only have to pay the present value of your vehicle at a lower interest rate. If lenders have already repossessed your vehicle, it is crucial that you act fast. You typically have ten days from the day of repossession to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Your Rights Against Lenders
Creditors cannot take your possessions without providing some sort of notification or warning. Louisiana law prohibits them from coming to your home and towing your car whenever they please. Many lenders will try to trick or confuse individuals into believing that their release is not needed, or that they unknowingly gave a release to have their vehicle towed.
Being aware of your rights as a debtor can help you identify when creditors infringe upon them. There are only three methods of repossession that creditors can pursue, one of which is highly restricted in Louisiana.
Voluntary repossession is just that: voluntary. Creditors will often try to sway you to believe that you must sign a document, but you are not legally obligated to do so. If you do sign the agreement, you are permitting them to tow your vehicle. If you do not, they will have to pursue a court judgment to get permission to repossess your vehicle.
Creditors who pursue a judgment and win have the right to seize your vehicle. There will be no documents for you to sign and a deputy or sheriff will have your car towed. Your best option in getting your vehicle back is to acquire the services of a local bankruptcy attorney.
Louisiana is not a ‘self-help’ state, which makes this method highly questionable if pursued by a creditor. Self-help repossessions are those that are permitted based on contract terms rather than a court judgment. If lenders accurately seek this method, there will be no voluntary repossession form, and they can take your vehicle without your signature. In most cases, the creditor bypassed the strict state guidelines to get your vehicle. If you believe this to be true, it is crucial that you waste little time in securing legal help.
E. Orum Young Law Offices has filed over 20,000 bankruptcies in Northeast Louisiana and are fully aware of shady repossession tactics pursued by creditors. Our seasoned attorneys can stop repossession and guide you through the Chapter 13 bankruptcy process. Our Trial Guarantee ensures that we will take your case to trial at your request. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.
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