Larger, costlier items, such as cars, are often purchased on a loan from a retailer or a third party lender. If a buyer defaults on his or her loan or neglects to make timely payments, the vehicle can be repossessed in order to cover the cost of the outstanding loan.
If you are facing the threat of a repossession, or if your vehicle has already been repossessed, filing for bankruptcy can stop the repossession, and may even allow you to get your vehicle back.
In order to do this, however, you must act quickly by contacting a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney who can handle these matters for you. Our Cincinnati repossession lawyers are experienced in handling these types of cases and can review the details of your contract and your situation to determine your best options for stopping a repossession. We are committed to protecting your rights during this difficult time.
How An Attorney Can Help
At O’Connor Acciani & Levy, we work with people at all stages of the repossession process, whether you have just received a notice that your property could be reclaimed, or if the repossession has already occurred. In some instances, we may be able to renegotiate or restructure the terms of your loan, but in most situations your best option for avoiding a repossession is to file for bankruptcy.
If you contact a bankruptcy attorney before your property is reclaimed, we can immediately file a bankruptcy petition on your behalf. This will put an automatic stay in place that will suspend all legal proceedings, including repossession. If your property has already been repossessed, a bankruptcy filing may still help you recover the vehicle before it is sold.
Bankruptcy is only a temporary solution, but it can give you time to consider your options and determine what you want to do with your vehicle and outstanding payments.
Our Cincinnati repossession attorneys know that your vehicle is vital to your livelihood and your ability to get to and from work. That is why we are committed to doing everything we can to ensure your rights are protected throughout this entire process.
Ohio Repossession Laws
Many states allow possessions to be reclaimed without notice, at any time or place. However, creditors are not permitted to confront the buyer or break the law when seizing property. These actions are interpreted as breaching the peace, and endanger the creditor’s right to the repossessed property.
Often, creditors hire a third party to repossess the property. This party too must obey the law during the repossession process or be subject to a penalty fee or a suit for damages by the buyer.
Property that has been seized may be retained by the creditor, but is normally sold to cover the expense of the buyer’s debt. Some rights, however, still belong to the buyer, even after repossession. Depending on the state laws where the buyer lives, he or she can request the following information:
- What will become of the property
- Where and when the property will be sold if a public auction is held
- When and to whom the property was sold
Buyers also have the right to buy the seized property back by paying the creditor the outstanding balance, including the cost of the repossession. If the creditor decides to keep the property, the buyer can insist that the property be sold and attempt to buy it back.
Frequently the value a creditor is able to recover from the sale of the property is less than the debt owed. In many states, the creditor has the right to sue the buyer for the difference between what the property sold for and the balance due, known as a deficiency.
Creditors have to abide by their states laws to recover deficiencies in a repossession sale. This means repossession was performed without breaching the peace, and the property was sold at fair market value.
Contact Our Cincinnati Repossession Attorneys Today
If you have fallen behind in making your car payment and are facing the threat of repossession, filing for bankruptcy may be in your best interest. Our Cincinnati repossession lawyers offer free consultations and can review the details of your loan contract, can negotiate with creditors and may be able to stop your vehicle from being taken away.
Contact O’Connor Acciani & Levy today to learn more about your legal options and to find out if bankruptcy is right for you.