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How to avoid a repo when you can’t make a car payment

How to avoid a repo when you can’t make a car payment

(Cars, Credit and Money Matters) Permanent link

David, an All Consuming reader, recently wrote for advice: “I cannot make my car payment. If I pay the interest and a little towards the principal, can I keep the car until I get back on my feet?” Attorney General Rob McKenna response is below.

Unfortunately, if you don’t make your payments, your lender may repossess your vehicle – and your blemished credit history can make it difficult for you to obtain another loan in the future. Plus, you will still owe the remaining balance on the vehicle you no longer have. Here are some options that may help you avoid a repo:

  • Contact your lender as soon as possible. Be honest about the situation and why you aren’t able to make the payment. If you’ve been a good customer and made your payments on time in the past, your lender may be willing to defer a payment and allow you to keep the car. If you can reach an agreement to change your original contract, get those new terms in writing. Don’t wait until your loan has been turned over to a debt collector. By then, your lender has given up on you and it’s too late to negotiate.
  • Refinance. You may be able to negotiate a lower interest or spread out the payments over a longer period of time, resulting in lower payments. The downside to a longer-term loan is that you’ll pay more interest. Compare loans from your current lender and others.
  • Sell the car to pay off the loan. Determine how much you owe on the vehicle then check its market value on a site such as Edmund's or Kelley Blue Book. If you owe less than the car is worth, sell it and use the cash to clear your debt. Before selling, review your financing agreement to see if the lender charges prepayment penalties for paying off your loan early.
  • Look for ways to save more money. Are you positive you can’t make your payment? You may be able to cut household expenses by eliminating other services you don’t need. You might qualify for assistance programs to help cover groceries, utilities or prescription drugs. Check out our Recession Survival Guide for resources at

You may also benefit from credit counseling. A legitimate credit counselor can help you regain control of your finances by designing a realistic budget that allows you to pay off your existing debts, cover your everyday expenses and save for the future. For a referral to a local credit counselor, call 211 or visit the National Foundation for Credit Counseling Web site at

Be aware that your lender does not have to notify you before your car is repossessed. Even if you return the car voluntarily, you still are responsible for paying any outstanding debt on the loan, as well as the lender’s cost of the repo, and your creditor still may enter the late payments or repossession on your credit report. For more information about what happens during a repo and your consumer rights, see our Web site at

Consumers can reduce repo risk by carefully considering how much car they can afford prior to making a purchase. You can find tips to help with your car purchase decision on our Web site at

Posted by Sarah Lane All Consuming Blog Moderator at 10/26/2011 04:27:17 PM | 

I have recently been laid off and require a car to look for work. Is there a program where the government could pay for my monthly car payments until I am employed again?
Posted by: steven holtz ( Email ) at 9/28/2009 9:48 AM

Steve, I'm sorry you lost your job. I’m not aware of any program that will pay your bills for you. However, you may be able to meet with a credit counselor and work out a payment plan. Credit counseling services often arrange for consumers to pay debts through a debt management plan. You deposit money each month with a credit counseling organization, which then uses those deposits to pay your bills and loans according to a payment schedule they’ve worked out with your creditors and you. The National Foundation for Consumer Counseling provides a list of member agencies at or call 1-800-388-2227 for 24-hour automated office listings. Also, you may be able to deduct certain costs associated with your vehicle in conjunction with your job search. Check with the IRS. Finally, if you don’t already have a car or need to sell yours, you might look into using a car-sharing program to save money.
Posted by: Kristin Alexander, All Consuming Moderator ( Email ) at 9/29/2009 4:36 PM

I am in the same situation, I tried calling the creditor to let them know I would be paying the loan 34 days late. They would not under any circumstances allow me to do so and they said they could then come and get my car. I asked them if they really wanted a 10 year old car with over a 130,000 miles and they said they sell them at auction every day. I have had good payment history with this company for 6 years and I can not sell this car ( I owe more than it is worth) or refinance ( to old). So nice of my bank to try to work with me. Ps when we bought the car we were making $2000 more per month than now so at the time the monthly cost was small. Now we are trying desperately to stay afloat. No wonder the banks are failing, they will not work with their customers, they would rather repo or foreclose on their property.
Posted by: Amber ( Email ) at 1/26/2010 6:40 PM

This is regarding the notice on the AG facebook page:
'AG’s law enforcement bills still alive – for now '
I am really glad to hear that the AG's office is making consumer protection law improvements. Especially as it pertains to used car dealerships. We had a used car dealership manager explain to us over and over that Washington state does not have a right to riscind law so we had to keep the un-safe used car at our own risk even though we had brought it back to the dealership within 24 hours after driving it off the lot. Washington State's consumers need to have laws created for protection that has not in the past been afforded to us by the law. If at all possible, could the attorney generals office possibly look at creating a crearly read credit card statute of limitations law? Currently it can be read as either a 4 year term or a 6 year term. This would assist the consumer if this could be a bit clearer.
Thank you for your efforts on behalf of washington state consumers,
Posted by: JJTA800 ( Email ) at 2/8/2010 9:28 AM

A few years ago the car dealerships were offering credit to just about anyone regardless of their credit situation. Many were buying cars that were more than they could really afford. A loss of a job or even an cut in income has made a huge difference in lifestyles today.

Individuals should look at their finances before taking on the burden of a hefty car payment each month. If you don't make your payments, your car will be repossessed. It's as simple as that.
Posted by: Jeannie Harris ( Email ) at 11/9/2010 8:08 AM

I purchased a car and a 6 months later found out that they company i purchased it from had sold the contract. However, that company or the new company has not contacted me. I made a payment to the original company and we call the person to whom was suppose to have the contract claimed they don't have it. And i only owed 1200. left of the contract made a 100o payment and the original company told me they had to find out where the contract is. So i had not been making payments cause i believe i owe them nothing. But i think they are going to try to make me pay more. So the question is what is my rights as far as getting the title for the car without making another payment if possible. [ALL CONSUMING RESPONSE: Diane -- I'm confused. Are you saying you made all the payments under the original contract and now someone is asking for additional money? Or that you only made some payments? I suggest filing a complaint with our office if you believe you are being charged for payments beyond your contract terms.]
Posted by: diane ( Email ) at 7/7/2011 11:14 PM

I have a car loan through a bank that is not around here at all, they say I can make my payments through wells fargo. I made my payment on July 1 and July 14th I got a ball from a repo agency saying they were coming to get my van. So I called my loan company and told them that the payment was made on th 1st they said that I needed to fax a copy of my reicpt to them and they would research where the payment went. But they could only put a 24hr hold on the repo and it could take up to 5 buisness day and if they showed up to repo in that time frame then I would have to deal with the extra cost. I do not see how this is legal seeings how Ivsent them the proof I made my payment.
I also was wandering how late a payment has to be before they can repo your car? I am new to Washington and I know in Oregon you have to be atleast 3 monthes past due. [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: I can't give you a legal analysis on this blog but would advise you to check your sales contract for information about late payments. If you have a specific issue to resolve, please file a consumer complaint. Thanks.]
Posted by: kris ( Email ) at 7/15/2011 12:06 PM

I recently had a reposession I have pulle dmy credit report and it is not listed yet my finance company is letting it bill out and showing another 30 late paymtn when I dont have possession of the car. How long can they let the account bill out and age on my reprot [ALL CONSUMING RESPONSE: If you have paid more than 60 percent of the amount of the loan, the creditor must sell, lease, or otherwise dispose of the item, unless the consumer signs a statement after the default which permits the creditor to keep the item in full payment of the loan. The sale must be held within 90 days of repossession. You must be notified of the time and place of the sale.

If you have paid less than 60 percent, the creditor may decide if the item is to be kept as payment for the loan or sold. You must be notified in writing by the creditor of what will be done. If the creditor chooses to keep the article, you have 21 days to protest in writing and demand the item be sold.

The proceeds from the sale go to cover the balance of the loan, and the costs of the sale and repossession. Any money which remains is returned to the buyer. If the proceeds of the sale do not cover the loan and expenses, the repossessor is allowed to sue the buyer for the full amount owed including repossession fees, auction costs and legal fees.]
Posted by: SANDRA ( Email ) at 7/25/2011 7:26 PM

I was laid off and unemployed for the past two years. Now, I am extremely behind on my car payments. Recently, I found a new job and can afford my payments but wondering is there some type of help out there in getting me back on track for me to keep the car.
Posted by: Jennifer ( Email ) at 3/11/2012 1:17 PM

Well I put myself in a situation I'm not proud of. I have an auto loan that I haven't paid in about 8 months I believe. What can they do and what can I do to save my car cause I need it for work and care for my daughter.
Posted by: Dave ( Email ) at 3/29/2012 11:14 AM

I had my monthly buget figured out to pay my car payment,then my daughter thats 12 her Father raped her,so now I don't recieve any Child Support. My only monthly income is Social Security,tried to find any loop holes to pay my past due payments,I really need some help or solution to keep my only car.
Posted by: Linda ( Email ) at 7/5/2012 8:53 PM

I have just switched from temp to perm at my job and have fallen behind on my car payment due to haveing to put a week in the hole to get my check. Can anyone hlep me in finding some assistance in car payments?
Posted by: Dewayne ( Email ) at 8/4/2012 7:36 AM

I purchased a car for a certain amount for 72 months. I lost my job an deferred a couple of payments on top of a few late payments. My interest rate is 14.5%. I called on the payoff an was told I still owe 17k on the balance an 34 payments left. I asked how an I was told that is the balance. I went to a dealership an they pulled my payoff had the same payoff amount but showed I've made 47 payments at $622.00 that I couldn't have 34 left. I called the finance co an they said I don't have a set interest rate it's a flexible interest an when I deferred the payments they charge me interest until the payments are made. Now what was the benefit to deferring them an I now owe an additional 9000.00 on this vehicle an they won't work with me or provide me anything saying my contract says its flexible interest
Posted by: Kelli jones ( Email ) at 8/23/2012 2:48 PM

I lost my job due to illness after only having my car 1 month. The same day I lost my job, my 15 y/o brain damaged daughter was sexually assulted. My stress level has made my physical illness worse. My spouse is disabled and I am applying for dissability so I can get my health better and go back to work. I am the only earned income in the family. Our income now will only cover rent and most of the bills but not the car or insurance or food etc... What is the best course of action for me to take to handle not being able to pay the car loan and insurance when It will definately be at least 2 to 3 months before I can afford it again?? [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: You should contact your finance company and inform them of your financial situation and see what options there maybe for you. Also, you should contact your insurance company and ask them about any money saving options they have. You can also call “211”, your Mayor’s office about temporary financial assistance, services offered in your city/county etc.]
Posted by: Devistated ( Email ) at 10/28/2012 12:23 PM

We purchase a car right before the claspe. The car loan was sold to Wells Fargo and we were not told. Wells Fargo was not informed I am assuming that we were still making monthly payments to the bank who sold our loan. Well Fargo put the car on our credit as a charge off never paid. We paid $7,000.00 dollars in payment. What can we do? [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: You should have received a notice in the mail from both the original bank and from Wells Fargo regarding the sale and once completed, the original bank should not have accepted any further payments. You should dispute the credit reporting with the credit bureau and then file a complaint with our Consumer Resource Center at: against both the original bank and Wells Fargo.]
Posted by: Cathy ( Email ) at 10/28/2012 4:04 PM

I was laid off from my job in May 2012. I notified my lender that I was under an L & I claim and receiving unemployment. They agreed to give me a one month extension. Before the month was over, I received more documentation from L&I, stating I was disabled. I called the lender,went to the business location numerous times and asked for the full loan agreement and all payments made on my car loan and a balance. To this date,despite asking, I have never received this information.In a phone conversation with them in July,they agreed to give me 2 additional months grace period. In August of 2012, I moved to Colorado. I had spoken to lender,sent letters and emails of my new address & contact info.I attempted many times to contact them and retrieve my information regarding this loan, to refinance or to create a reasonable amount of repayment. They repeatedly transferred me over to others who all told me different things. On October 20th,2012, My car was towed from my carport in Colorado and repossessed. When I called the credit union, they said I needed to apply for a personal loan to recover or pay it off. I applied for the loan which they denied (because of late car payments!)and to this date, Nov. 14th,2012, I have not received per fair credit act,any documents nor notices involving the repossession or denial of my loan application. Does anyone know if I have legal remedy,in this instance? Thank You [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: If the credit union that financed the car is Washington based, then you can file a complaint with our office at: and we can try to get your questions answered and mediate a resolution. If the credit union is not Washington based then you will need to file a complaint with the Colorado Attorney General at 303-866-5219.]
Posted by: P berry ( Email ) at 11/14/2012 2:04 PM

My car loan bank wont take my payment. we r 2 mnths behond but have been keeping up on the 3rd payment. Can they do that? [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: It is fairly standard in car loan contracts that once a consumer is in default, the bank can refuse any future payment.]
Posted by: Jessica ( Email ) at 12/10/2012 7:22 PM

I was 2 months behind in my payments going on 3rd month (I have a 10 day grace period from my due date) I paid the last two months late payments they still repossessed the car. Is that allowable? I know I was late I was unemployed and homeless however can afford payments again and have a roof over my son and I head again. Thanks to god. [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: A grace period generally refers to the time before a late charge can be added to the payment and/or reported to the credit bureaus. A car can be reposed 1 day after the payment is due. We would suggest that you contact your finance company with your current financial information and request that the car be returned and the contract continued. If the finance company agrees, you will most likely have to pay the repossession costs, legal and/or storage fees that were incurred. If the finance company does not agree, then they must notify you within 21 business days of what will be done with the car either kept as payment in full or sold. Note if the car is sold, you may be responsible for any residual amount of the contract, legal or storage fee, repossession costs. You can at any time prior to the car being sold recover any personal belongings left in the car. If the finance company will not respond to you, you can file a complaint with our office.]
Posted by: Deborah ( Email ) at 1/19/2013 6:50 PM

i have bad credit and missed 2 payments on my 2005 gmc truck. i really want to keep my truck but its hard when im going back and forth for a pinched nerve in my back and paying emergency rooms for my visits, come to find out im probably go through surguryand thats will cost. what can i do , im trying to refinanceanyone i can refinace through, help me [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: You can try to work out a re-finance agreement with the finance company, lengthening the loan to reduce your monthly payment, and/or cancel any optional services. Our office cannot recommend a specific finance. You may also want to ask friends or family who they would recommend or talk to your bank or credit union about any options.]
Posted by: william ( Email ) at 2/5/2013 8:58 AM

I am 19 and with the co signing of my dad I got a 2011 Nissan Altima. Following that which was 5 months ago I had went through three job changes I moved to a different city and recently to a different state. The state where I moved has a lower minimum wage and I cannot afford my car payments. I don't have much bills but with my nearly 2 dollar change in pay rate I am left with nothing. Well besides that I did my research and the car was sold to me way above Kelley blue book price. And I am stuck and really need toget rid of this car. What do I do that wont have me paying more and not having a car [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: You can try to work out a re-finance agreement with the finance company, lengthening the loan to reduce your monthly payment, cancel any optional services, and/or speak with your dad about some temporary help until your financial situation stabilizes or improves. If you are considering repossession either voluntary or involuntary, the finance company will hold both you and your father responsible for the contact plus collection, repossession, and/or attorney costs. Unfortunately, there are not a lot of options in this situation.]
Posted by: Adrian ( Email ) at 2/16/2013 5:55 PM

So I'm about to start a new job and got behind on my car payment because I was laid off. My question is if I just moved in to a new place and did a change of address, will they be able to see where I moved to in order to repo the car? Reason I ask is because as soon as I get my first paycheck, it's all going to be paid and up to date. If they can then I'm just going to tell my last roommate to leave a letter in the mailbox saying I don't live there any more until I get my first paycheck. [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: Generally when someone changes their address and fills out a form at the Post Office, that information is placed on the envelope and if returned the sender would see the change. You should contact the Post Office to see if any other information is available to the public. We would suggest that you talk with the finance company and let them know the plan to bring the car current, if that isn’t an option you should contact a private attorney for advice.]
Posted by: Aaron ( Email ) at 4/5/2013 6:31 PM

In March 2011 I put $10,000 Down on a 2010 Sebring. In July 2011 I moved to another state and while finding ajob I became a month late on my note. My car got repossed and the cmpany refused to let me make payment and get it out of the tow yard because I moved out of state. I was devastated....A few months later I called the finance manager and asked where the car was and if it had been sold he rudely told me he didnt know what happened to the car after it was picked up by the tow truck. So I called the tow yard and they said the car had been picked up from the finance company two days after it was repo'd. I have been researching for almost one year trying to figure out what I could do about this. I thought the car had to stay in the tow yard for 30 days? No we are trying to get a new car and they say the repo is on my credit . I called the finance company of the repo'd car to see how much the car was sold for and if I had a balance do but all I get is a rude "why" the hung up on. Any please! [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: In Washington once a car has been reposed by the finance company and less than 60% of the payments have been made, the finance company needs to determine if they will keep the car as payment for the loan or be sold. You must be notified in writing by the finance company as to what they plan to do. The repossession rules may be a little different in the state where you currently reside. However, if the finance company is located in Washington you can read more about repossessions at and file a complaint with our office at choose the Online option and fill out the General Consumer complaint form. If the finance company is not located in Washington, then you will need to contact their state’s Attorney General and file a complaint with their Consumer Protection Division.]
Posted by: Mineon ( Email ) at 4/20/2013 10:43 AM

I did in house financing from a company in 2012. I got a 2006 Saturn ion. the listed price was $8,900. With financing and extra crap they added like gap insurance for $250, a service contract for $999 and a loss damage waiver for $2500 plus taxes, fees and license, the total was about $14,000. I traded my car that I previous bought from them. they gave me $1800 for it and I paid $1000 down. Little did I know, Saturn went out of business a while ago and the Kelly blue book value of the car new car is $2,500. Well Ive had it for a year now and Im paying $368 per month. Im sick of it. I went to a dealership and they pulled up my credit history and said its not good enough to have a car payment that high. But the dealer would not take my Saturn as a trade in because there is too much negative equity. When the dealer called the car company, they lady was rude and said " oh she's trying to trade the car in? good luck with that!" And they did not report any of my payments to the credit bureaus so it says that I still owe $14,000 on my credit report. I got behind on one payment and they are trying to repossess. Seriously I got screwed and I want out of this contract. What do I do? I know that I could cancel some of the items on the contract such as the gap insurance and the loss damage waiver but do I get credit for the car I traded in and the payments Ive paid? I need to know this kind of stuff. I thought about the "don't go repo" option but the car is only worth $2,500. so nobody will take it. Please Ill listen to any suggestions because Ive talked to so many dealers and they all say the same thing! "drive it off a cliff or take it back. Did they violate any laws? I don't want to get screwed again so should I talk to a lawyer? help please!! [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: With regards to the final purchase price of the car there is nothing the consumer can do at this time as the contracts have been signed. The consumer can cancel the Gap Insurance, Service contract and possibly the Loss Damage waiver. Usually these types of contract extras will have a pro-rated refund system and any refund owed to the consumer will be given to the finance company and deducted from the balance owing. The dealership should be reporting the consumer’s monthly payments, late payments, fees etc to the consumer’s credit reports like any other creditor. If the consumer decides to do a voluntary repossession or if the dealer repossess the car the consumer may still be responsible for the contract amount plus any repossession costs, attorney fees, and/or auction fees. On our website we have information regarding repossession at . The CRC may be able to help the consumer with our informal dispute resolution service, they can file a complaint with us online at choose the Online option and fill out the General Consumer Complaint Form. The consumer can also contact the Northwest Justice Project and see if they qualify for any of their legal services. Their phone number is (888) 201-1014 and they are open Monday to Thursday 9:30 am to 12:30 pm.]
Posted by: shannara ( Email ) at 4/26/2013 4:57 PM

I lost my job and now 8 months behind on payments i only owe 3700 what should i do. [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE -- Unfortunately I don’t have enough information to give a full answer. You should contact your creditor either by phone or by letter and explain the situation and see what type of payment arrangement can be made. You can also contact one of our Consumer Resource Centers Monday to Friday 10:00 am to 3:00 pm at (800) 551-4636 and speak with a staff member regarding their situation.]
Posted by: mike ( Email ) at 5/9/2013 5:57 PM

i got a car from carhop it had a warrety on it that didnt pay for anything after 20 days it kept breacking down it even cought on fire i called carhop and they didnt care this cost me over 10000 to fix it and know im late on my payment obout they keep on calling me and yelling at us they wont work with us what can we do [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: i really don't have enough information to advise you. Please call the Consumer Resource Center at (800) 551-4636 between 10:00 am to 3:00 om Monday to Friday. We will be able to get some additional information and advise them on their options.]
Posted by: kathy ( Email ) at 5/30/2013 2:32 PM

I recently brought a used car in Texas because that's where i worked at during that time. Cost of living was low and it was easy to keep up with the payments. I pay 599.00 for this car a month. My chevy trailblazer got stolen right off the lot in front of my apt. I was in the middle of preparing to go to yet another school and desperate for a car. Walked into the dealership and got me a jeep. More space and affordable at the time. The dealership fixed all the paperwork for the bank and sent them in. Two months later i receive a mail stating i have missed 2 months worth of payments. I called the bank and they checked the status. Apparently, the money was going into savings, not checking. Its been sitting there. So the person apologized and said he will fix it. I move out here to new York and the cost of living is ridiculously high and so i tried to trade my car in for something i can afford. Well they tell me my credit does not look good because i missed two payments on this car. So i call back and they act like i did intentionally not pay for this car when the dealership made the payment arrangements, not me. How can i fight this?? [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: Please call the Consumer Resource Center at (800) 551-4636 between 10:00 am to 3:00 pm Monday to Friday. We will be able to get some additional information and advise you on your options].
Posted by: Shelly ( Email ) at 5/30/2013 8:26 PM

We purchased a 2010 Jeep Patriot in late 2011, after taxes and tag etc.., the total purchase price was around $18,000. Since my credit was not that great, my wife and I financed the vehicle jointly (she cosigned) and the payment is a staggering $420 a month. We accepted the loan with the ridiculus a.p.r. because we were in a bind and needed a vehicle asap. At this time as well, we had two incomes, hers and mine. Everything was going great, payments were made ontime until we had our 1st child in February 2013. As most of us know, children are expensive and having a serious car payment,along with one income now because she is stay at home mother now, is not possible. For us at least, Ive contacted my lender on several occasions and they do not seem to care about my situation, they refuse to lower payment or refinance me. They advised me to try a different lender for a refi. I did just that, hit a brick wall everytime because of the negative equity. So im facing a voluntary surrender and ruin my credit even more or... I dont know!! Any help would be appreciated. Ive done tons of research and my options are to sell and pay off loan, no possible, the blue book value is $5000 less than what I owe, or refince, which again is impossible becase of the negative equity. Any advice would be appreciated. Ty [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: Unfortunately, we don't have any different options for you. However you may want to contact the US Department of Justice for a referral to an approved credit counseling service here in Washington. The US Department of Justice started reviewing and approving credit counselors and debt educators a few years ago. You can contact them directly at (202) 514-4100 or online at or by email at for debt educators or for credit counselors.]
Posted by: Alfred ( Email ) at 6/24/2013 6:30 PM

My car was repossessed in october of 2011 and since then I haven't gotten a notice about the sale or auction of the vehicle. My wife and I went to get a home loan and come to find out I had 5 90 day late payments on a balance from the car that I didn't even know that I owed it and iits destroying my credit. My loan is associated with csc logic in texas. Contacted them didn't get anywhere really a guy sent me to the repo dept to leave a message and no returned phone call. What can I do about this? [ALL CONSUMING MODERATOR'S RESPONSE: After repossession has occured the creditor needs to respond to the consumer and inform them if the car is going to be kept as payment in full or sold at auction. If the car was sold at auction the consumer may be responsible for any residual amount or if there is an overage that must be refunded to the consumer. We recommend that you file a complaint with our office via our website at]
Posted by: mike ( Email ) at 7/5/2013 8:18 PM

I just financed a car in June of this year my son got laid of his job and I must help pay the rent. do u think I can refinance my car it is a lease for 72 months. to cheaper payment. [All Consuming Moderators Response: Thank you for your question, unfortunately our office does not have any information regarding your specific question. However, you may want to contact your finance company and discuss your situation with them and see what options they may have available for you. You may also want to contact the US Department of Justice by calling (202) 514-4100 for a referral to an approved credit counseling service. The Department of Justice has referrals for credit counselors in all 50 states.]
Posted by: yvette ( Email ) at 8/20/2013 4:20 PM

can a repo company contact u thru facecbook? I bought my car from a buy here pay here no loan company. and I owe money but they have not tried to contact me...if I contact them to start payments up again can they deny this and just take my car [All Consuming Blog Moderator Response: Thank you for your question, in order to assist you with this question please call our Consumer Resource Center at (800) 551-4636 between 10:00 am to 3:00 pm Monday to Friday.]
Posted by: anonymous ( Email ) at 9/16/2013 4:53 PM

my husband took out a loan and had purchase the "GAP" insurance, I recently notified the financial institution regarding his passing, I also contacted the GAP insurance company and was told that Washington State has a non-refundable purchase on GAP insurance? I understand the fact regarding the GAP insurance as protection in the event your insurance does not cover the cost, does this apply to someone who had passed away? [All Consuming Blog Moderator's Response: Thank you for your question and our condolences for your loss. “GAP” can generally be cancelled on a percentage basis depending on the length of time between the purchase and cancellation. For the exact coverage terms you will need to review the plans terms and conditions to determine if the plan covers your husband’s passing. If you are unable to determine the coverage terms you may want to contact the Office of the Insurance Commissioner and ask if they have any services that may be useful to you.]
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Amount Needed:
Posted by: missmonica ( Email ) at 11/4/2013 4:17 PM

I bought a car from aaf auto i paid 10,000 for a 2003 sable a month after i had the car. The catilic coverter stop up they towed the car to their shop and told me they put on a new one .6 monthes later my car has blowen up the shop ssayes the catlic conver was stop up and caused my car to blow up.the shop told me my car was only blue book for 1,000 that it would cost about 3,000 to fix the car. If Ilet the car go back can they sue me for the whole amount or just what the car is blue booked at or do i need to file for bankrup.
AGO Blog Manager Comment (lw): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for help with your situation.
Posted by: Debbie ( Email ) at 2/24/2014 11:57 AM

thanks for sharing with us.
Posted by: aman ( Email ) at 3/3/2014 11:12 PM

I am about to be 16 days late on my car payment. I told my lenders that I can make my payment on the 16th day which will be my first check. But they said they cannot do anything. I mean, I never missed a payment, late but never missed. And I have paid all late charges on top ofy payment. I think it ia ao dumb and stupid that they would go with the repo. I gave up, I told them to do what they gotta do. I cannot believe they cannot hold out until the 16th day. :/ Ugh! what should I do? All those payments and it is paid off in a year. So upset that the lenders are dicks!
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lw): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm, Mon-Frid, for assistance.
Posted by: moe ( Email ) at 3/29/2014 12:06 PM

I cant find any law with the time deadlines that you have posted on your repo web page. (see below) Is your post outdated? What specific law are you refering to?
After an Item is Repossessed

AGO Blog Comment Manager (lw): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division for specific information regarding this post. 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm.
Posted by: jim ( Email ) at 4/10/2014 5:22 PM

we recently were both unemployed. my car was stolen, and hers is on the verge on repo. we got the call today that they will repo the car soon. we only owe 1,600 on the car and the company will not do a deferment or work with us. I am so lost. the company is green tree. they bought out the loan when she moved from PA. Anyone have any direction on what we can do?
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lw): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm Mon-Fri.
Posted by: james ( Email ) at 5/30/2014 2:43 PM

Are you kidding me??? Why didn't I ever receive any kind of written repossession notice from my lender? I'm still very shaken by the recent event that had occurred when someone came banging at my relative's door yesterday and again this morning when I saw a suspicious white truck pull in front of the house again. I've been for tge past few months receiving harassing calls from an individual claiming to be an investigator, but mentioning something about m vehicle. The vehicle is not even in my posession! In fact, someone else was supposed to have help me finance it, and he too went missing with the car. I really need an attorney, because this person whom I trusted took advantage of me and ruined my credit score.
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lw): While we cannot act as personal attorneys or refer you to an attorney, if you have questions concerning your credit score you may contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 and 3 pm Monday-Friday.
Posted by: Mari ( Email ) at 7/3/2014 7:47 AM

My car got repo on 32nd day. I called and made arrangements the same time I was paying my son's account. So I paid my son's account on Monday and going to Pay mine on Friday. On saturday I woke up and forgot and I have done this before and forget and I called at 7am and hey took the payment and the car was taken at 7am. so I have all these fee's that were paid the same day and they counted it as there mistake. But my credit drop because of there error. I ask for them to fix this so many times and they refused. How can I fix this? I had to pay storage fee's when everything was still in the car. Which they charged me for. The repo company didn't even get time to tell the Bank they had the car, since I paid the same day at the same time the payment was made. What can I do to fix this error on my credit?
AGO Blog Manager (lk): Please contat our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for more information.
Posted by: Daniella ( Email ) at 8/7/2014 7:09 PM

My son van was reposed the same day the payment was due and charged $100 dollars to get it back. Is this legal ?
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk) Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for more information
Posted by: JJ ( Email ) at 8/8/2014 9:30 AM

My brother lost his Job but still has enough in the bank to pay a couple payments before he geta another jib. The car dealership said he HAD to give back the car ASAP. Because he lost his job? I smell something funny here. He's had the car for almost a month now.
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for more information regarding your situation.
Posted by: alonzo ( Email ) at 8/12/2014 1:34 PM

I just recently put 1000 dollars down on an 01 sentra my payments are every two weeks mu first payment was due on the 18th and they wanted me to pay 400 on sales taxes by the 20th. My roommate moved out with out notice so that put me in a tight situation to be able to pay all that money at once. I called the dealer on the 16th and informed them what was going on and I was asking for just one more week to get them all their money. Well they took the car on the 19th and said I could have it back if I bright them all that I owed in one week and made me sign a hand written letter stating this. I explained to the man that without the car I have no way to work so it will make it difficult to get him that money now especially if I have no way to even pick up my check. Well I got fired today because I had no way to work so now I'm unable to pay them at all. What should I do? Why did they not let me keep the car for the week and repossess it if I didn't bring in the money on Friday. I feel like I just got ripped off I had the car for only two weeks. Can they do that?
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for more information.
Posted by: sam ( Email ) at 9/22/2014 12:15 AM

My 2010 honda accord was just repoed two weeks ago. The repo man told me it doesn't affect your credit score until three months after the repo. So with this information I went to a Toyota dealership in hopes to get a new car loan. My friend, who works at this dealership, showed me my credit bureau report with shock and confusion… my loan is still open with the bank that I took my car loan out with, it shows I have made 15 car payments to this bank but they only took $1,000 off of my car loan, and according to this bureau it says I am up to date with all of my payments. On top of the repo man trespassing to get my vehicle my friend informed me that all of this is illegal and said he doesn't understand how the repo man even thought it was ok to take my car with no proof of me being late on any payments? On top of all of this my car loan about 7 months ago changed my monthly payments from 217 to 398 a month due to a "collateral insurance" that they have because my car insurance was canceled without my knowledge. They said they add this on to people loans to protect themselves in case of an accident. My friend also said this is illegal, to change my monthly payments like that because i have a contract saying how much my monthly payments are which is the 217. Also 3 months into them changing my payments to almost 400 dollars i had my loan complaint rewrite my loan to lower my monthly payments because this was unaffordable for me and i even received a confirmation email saying that they lowered my payments and rewrote my loan. So i continued paying the new payments of around 248 after this email and then about 3 months later is when they said you are about $400 behind because your payments are still 398 and you've only been paying 248. I told them how my loan was rewritten and they said they have no record of that so i faxed them my confirmation email and they said sorry for the confusion but this never went through so you owe us this money. That is when my late payments began taking place since i was only paying 248 it would go towards the previous months 400 that is owed… leading me to just be back paying "late payments" instead of taking care of my payments which i thought. This whole thing is a mess and i am unable to take out a new loan with an existing loan still open. How is this happening? How did the repo man take my car with nothing on record of my being late in my credit bureau? Also with no 21 day letter how could they legally take my car on my own property? Is there anything i can do?
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for information regarding your specific situation.
Posted by: Samantha ( Email ) at 10/14/2014 7:46 PM

I have been behind on my car note going on 4 months now. It seems as though I can never catch up with them keep adding on ridiculous fees. My car was stolen on September 27th. Still no word from the police. My claims adjuster asked me have I ever been late... I stated No knowing the last 6 months have been hard for me. I recently had a 9 month old baby and other bills to catch up on, but I can't seem to catch up....Any advice...Should I call the claims adjuster and tell him up front
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for information regarding to your specific situation.
Posted by: Megan ( Email ) at 10/15/2014 1:45 PM

I am less than 90 days late on a payment- with one to arrive at the Lenders office in a few days (in the mail- so techically in a few days that payment should never make it to 90 late, and the next barely 60)
I have a plan in place that will allw me to catch up on payment within the next 60 days. My husband left me earlier this year, and I have been playing catcup for months.
I have recently moved, and am able to make payment on the vehicle. I contacted the lender but was told "too late"
I still have the vehicle. What happens if I just keep paying and they don't come get it? I have not updated address with them yet. Will they be able to take the vehicle after I catch up on payments?
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Please contact our Consumer Protection at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for more information regarding your specific situation.
Posted by: Rae ( Email ) at 10/20/2014 12:20 PM

Ok so i got this car in 2009 i was told it was a 5 year loan which means it should of been paid off in march 2014 so i made that payment thought i was done they call me saying i didnt make April payment i said my car should of been paid of as of last month they said no its not i said o well i need to check into this mind u this has been a rough 5 years for me even tryin to keep the car my father passed i had to pay out of pocket for his funeral got 3months behind because of that they came and repo'd the car then even after i explained i couldn't make the payments then this year i had a surprise baby i didnt no i was pregnant until it Was time to have him i was off from work then for 3months i got behind again they came and repo'd it then i get it back and some one runs into my car im out of work for 2 in a half months im a single mother i lost both parents so i am my only source of income i explained to them and they asked can i make any payment so im calling around and stuff i put a payment in now im tryin to trade the car in they said they could take it because my stupid financial company still have it as a repo mind u i was trading it in so the car is right there its saying its repo'd the company said it's not when they showed me it said repo they called them no response kept putting him on hold so i told them they need to fix it they won't i said well why am i makin payments on a car that's repod then they still didn't take it off so now its 2months behind they repo'd it again but my contract says i Have to be 3months behind b4 they can repo it on top if when i got the car i was trading another car in they let me take the new car i told them im coming back to get my stuff out the car the dealership sold it mind u i had to come back the next day because they couldn't get a loan person that night so i think they flipped my paperwork around i only owed in march this year 5500 in august they said i owed 5800 how can they do that im tired of this company then each time it got repod the ppl go in my car can i file a lawsuit on them for that
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Please contact our Consumer Protection at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm for more information regarding your specific situation.
Posted by: Nashante ( Email ) at 10/24/2014 2:49 PM

If you are struggling with your car payments
try to let your lendor know what's going on. Hiding or evading their attempts to contact you only make them less likely to want to work with you.
According to information i found in Washington state, when the owner of a car is unable to uphold their end of the contract with the vehicle's seller, or lien holder, the seller may issue a ten-day stop delivery notice.
If the issue remains unresolved after these ten days have passed, then the contract will default and the seller will be within their right to repossess the car.
Posted by: Russell ( Email ) at 10/31/2014 7:57 AM

My son in horrible accident, will be mentally disabled rest of his life, cannot pay for truck, what Can I do
AGO Blog Manager (lk): I am sorry for your son's accident. Our office can legally only act as attorneys for the state agencies. I would suggest contacting a personal attorney to discuss your son's legal responsibility to his truck loan.
Posted by: pansy ( Email ) at 11/7/2014 12:57 AM

I was done really bad by a loan officer here in town
I was even told he knew how I could make some money
as i waiting on the loan he said would be one week this was one month.. I know others he has done bad also and I thought i could go on but the thought of him doing that to another person is eating my up
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Please visit our website at to file a complaint
Posted by: donna ( Email ) at 11/25/2014 6:51 AM

I Have A Loan and I beHind Three Months What Should I Doo???
AGO Blog Comment Manager (lk): Here is a link to our website where it gives information about debt and credit counseling. There is a link for government approved credit counseling agencies.
Posted by: Stella Ovalle ( Email ) at 11/25/2014 8:42 AM

I have a car loan and im 2 month s behind the. Company called me and said i have til the 15th to pay the amount or there going to repo my car i get paid on the 17th and wondering if they try to repo but dont get my car in the 2 days i need.can i still jus pay it and continue my everyday life or?
AGO Blog Manager (lk): Please contact our Consumer Protection Division at 800-551-4636 between 10 am and 3 pm. Under state law the Attorney General's Office serves as legal advisor to state agencies and certain officials and is not authorized to advise private citizens on legal matters, however we may be able to provide you with some general information regarding your situation.
Posted by: chris ( Email ) at 12/13/2014 12:17 PM

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