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Why Did the Bank Take My Car?

Law Office of Ronald V. De Caprio Oct. 13, 2016

Vehicle repossession can be a heartbreaking blow to the life of a New York resident who faces financial challenges. Without a car, a person may be unable to hold down his or her job and meet the many other important commitments he or she is obligated to achieve. However, repossession of one’s vehicle is often the result of missed or delinquent payments toward its ownership. This post will briefly discuss why vehicles are repossessed, giving individuals insight on the process and possible ways to navigate the situation.

Many people buy cars on credit. That means that they finance or take out a loan for some or all of the cost of the car. The benefit of financing a large purchase like a vehicle is that the buyer is able to pay off the vehicle over time rather than in one large lump sum.

However, when a person finances a vehicle, he or she is not the owner of it until the very last payment is made. The lending institution or car dealership that finances or loans the individual the money to buy the car retains rights to the vehicle even after the buyer takes possession of it. These relationships are generally governed by contracts and New York laws, but most lenders retain the right to repossess a vehicle if the buyer stops making payments toward its purchase.

Repossessing a vehicle is a lender’s way of ensuring it does not suffer losses as a result of a buyer’s payment deficiencies. Though it can be a difficult process to overcome, some individuals are able to avoid car repossession and other asset forfeiture proceedings through negotiations with their lenders. To learn more about taking control of one’s financial future, readers can speak with their debt relief and bankruptcy attorneys.