If someone believes that their vehicle was wrongfully repossessed, they should immediately call an attorney or consumer advocate. The first thing to determine is whether or not it was in fact wrongfully repossessed. In addition, it will need to be determined whether or not the company that repossessed the vehicle broke into a garage or otherwise disturbed the peace in the process of repossessing it. The term wrongful repossession gives rise to many potential claims that will need to be identified as quickly as possible while the consumer’s memory is fresh and all of the information is available to them. It is important to remember that viable claims expire after one year.
Will I Be Notified If My Repossessed Vehicle Is Going To Be Sold? Do I Have Any Rights To The Vehicle Sale?
According to Michigan law, an individual must be notified that their repossessed vehicle is going to be sold. Oftentimes, these sales will be private, which means the owner of the repossessed vehicle will have no rights to the vehicle aside from the right to redeem it for the full amount that is owed on it.
How Do You Know If The Repossession Of A Vehicle Was Illegal? What Criteria Must Be Met?
In order for a company to legally repossess a vehicle, they must have a lien on the vehicle. The lien doesn’t necessarily have to be recorded with the secretary of state, but the company that has the lien must have a valid security interest in the vehicle. The second requirement for a legal repossession is that the owner be in default. Many people assume that to be in default means being late on at least one month’s worth of payments, but according to many contracts, a person can be considered in default even if they are only one day late on their payment. This is true even if the company or creditor tells the owner that they have no reason to worry about their vehicle being repossessed; in fact, they might tell them that just to prevent them from hiding the vehicle in anticipation of it being repossessed. It’s also important to know that failure to keep a vehicle fully insured can result in legal repossession.
Should I First Try To Work With The Bank To Get My Car Back, Or Should I Hire An Attorney Right Away?
If the bank acknowledges that an error occurred, then it may be beneficial to work it out with them rather than hire an attorney. If someone needs their vehicle for work or to get their children to school and it is their only form of transportation, then they may benefit from paying the fee to regain possession of the vehicle prior to obtaining an attorney who could help determine whether the repossession was even legal.
Can My Car Be Repossessed On My Private Property Or In My Absence?
A person’s vehicle can be repossessed on their private property. It can even be taken out of their garage as long as no one disturbs the peace in the process of repossessing it. This means that the company would not be able to break into a garage or cut a lock in order to obtain a vehicle, and arguably, they are not allowed to enter property that has “no trespassing” signs posted. A repossession company is allowed to disable a vehicle in order to ensure that the owner doesn’t take it.
Could I Sue Both The Lender As Well As The Repo Company For Wrongful Repossession Of My Vehicle?
If the repossession was wrongful, then the owner of the vehicle could potentially sue both the repo company and the lender. If a third company was hired to actually carry out the repossession, then they could potentially be sued as well. In all cases, the advice of an experienced attorney should be sought.
How Do I Prove That Wrongful Repossession Of My Vehicle Occurred?
In order to prove that the repossession of a vehicle occurred illegally, an individual will have to present proof that they were not in default at the time of the repossession. Alternatively, they could present evidence that the company disturbed the peace in the process of repossessing the vehicle, such as by breaking into the garage or cutting a lock. It is also not uncommon for a lender to simply forget to cancel a repossession order.
For more information on Wrongful Repossession Of Vehicle In MI, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (248) 843-0550 today.