Understand Your Vehicle Repossession Rights

Are you behind on paying your car loan, truck loan, four-wheeler loan or boat loan? Are you afraid your vehicle will be repossessed? When you have so much else on your plate, the last thing you want to deal with is losing your vehicle. Fortunately, there is help in Chapter 13 bankruptcy and the laws of Louisiana.

The highly qualified attorneys of Simon, Fitzgerald, Cooke, Reed and Welch can help explain your options and most importantly, your rights against creditors. Filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy immediately stops creditors. The repossession is halted and your Chapter 13 Plan provides how you intend to pay the creditor.

In some cases you may be able to pay the present value of the vehicle at a reduced interest rate through Chapter 13. If your car has already been repossessed, you must act quickly. You normally have 10 days from the date of repossession to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Stops Car Repossession

If you fear your car will be repossessed or your car has already been repossessed, we can help. Schedule a free initial consultation with one of our experienced Louisiana bankruptcy attorneys. There are no Chapter 13 upfront fees.

Call 888-341-8091 or contact us online for a free consultation at our nearest office:

Shreveport • Lake Charles • Alexandria • Lafayette

Your Rights Against Creditors

Louisiana is generally not a "self-help" state. Creditors must follow certain steps before actually seizing your vehicle under Louisiana's strict self-help laws. Creditors cannot just come to your home and take your car without any warning. Many times people will have their vehicle repossessed, thinking it was completely legitimate. They may have been tricked into thinking their release was not required or gave a release without knowing it. That is why it is so important to understand your rights and when they have been violated. We can take legal action on your behalf.

There are three common methods of repossession:

  1. The "voluntary repossession" method: This is the method used by many creditors. They attempt to advise you that you must sign the voluntary surrender. You do not have to sign anything. Under this method, if you do not sign, they cannot take your car. A voluntary repossession form is just that, voluntary. You never have to sign it. Creditors may claim that you must sign the form and some may inadvertently do so. However, you do not have to sign this form and should consult with an attorney if you are faced with one.
  2. The court order method: Creditors can go to a judge and obtain a court order to seize your vehicle. There are no documents for you to sign and a deputy sheriff or marshal will have your car towed.
  3. The "self-help" method: This is a highly restricted method in Louisiana. There is no need for a voluntary repossession form. If they have done this properly, they can take your vehicle without your signature. Chances are the creditor did not follow the strict guidelines under the law. Talk to an attorney about your individual situation.

Schedule A Free Consultation With Our Experienced Bankruptcy Lawyers

Past due on a vehicle loan? We can help. Please call us today at 888-341-8091 to take action to protect your rights. Do not sign a voluntary surrender or any other documents relating to your vehicle until you have consulted with one of our experienced Louisiana bankruptcy lawyers. We offer a free consultation and no upfront attorney's fees are required in Chapter 13.