Everything You Need to Know About Repossession in Rome
What Is Repossession?
If you sign a car loan agreement and use a certain property as collateral for the loan, that property can become subject to repossession if you fail to honor the loan agreement.
When making a large purchase like a car, people often take out a loan and enter into a contract with a car lender to make regular payments until the loan is paid off.
Sometimes, however, life situations such as health issues, divorce, loss of a job, or other unexpected problems can lead to financial strain and make you unable to pay your debts.
While the majority of repossessions in Georgia deal with cars or trucks, other property items may be vulnerable if they are encumbered by a loan.
We have experience dealing with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Our services include car repossessions, unfair debt practices, debt collector harassment, defending credit card and student loan lawsuits, inaccurate credit reporting, class actions, and auto dealer fraud.
What Acts Constitute A Breach Of The Contract And Lead To Repossession?
If you stop making payments or if you otherwise breach the contract agreement, the lender can accelerate the loan, which means they can demand that you immediately pay the entire balance of the loan.
If you don’t have the money to immediately pay the loan in full, the lender can repossess your vehicle. To recover their losses, the lender will likely sell your vehicle at auction.
If the sale price is not enough to cover the balance of the loan, you might be held liable for the deficiency.
This is why it’s important to understand your rights and obligations under the contract agreement before you sign it.
What Does a Repossession Attorney Do?
Repossession attorneys are legal professionals who assist individuals whose property has been repossessed by a lender. A lawyer can protect your legal rights identify your options, speak to the lender on your behalf, save time, and advise you about the best course of action.
Repossession lawyers also help enforce the repossessed items and ensure they are sold at a fair price. A repossession lawyer can be hired by either the owner or the lender (if it is a securitized loan).
Repossession is a stressful process that hurts your finances and credit score. It may also cause issues with your family, which can lead to marital problems resulting in divorce.
However, if you have a repossession attorney on your side, they can help you in navigating Georgia repossession laws. Moreover, they will ensure that they follow all legal requirements and procedures for repossessing your vehicle or property.
A repossession attorney with history and experience in this field will be familiar with the repo process and can offer you the best chance to recover your property or receive a fair price for it.
Georgia Law Regarding Repossession
Georgia repossession laws ensure that agents may not enter your home uninvited or use any form of violence to repossess your property.
Repossession agents, however, do not need to notify you before repossessing your vehicle. This means that they may come at any time and legally take it away.
By filing for bankruptcy, you can initiate an active stay, which temporarily prevents agents from repossessing your property and gives you extra time to figure out a solution to deal with your debts.
Active stay also prevents creditors from harassing you through phone calls or emails. Our experienced Northwest Georgia bankruptcy attorneys can help you file bankruptcy and seek a positive solution for your case.
Common Property Items Subject to Repossession
Repossession also may apply to personal property items, including TVs, appliances, jewelry, and furniture. If you fall behind on loan payments and fail to uphold the contract terms, the repossession company has the legal right to repossess your property.
With the legal assistance of a Northwest Georgia bankruptcy lawyer from Bournakis & Mitchell, P.C., you can get quality legal advice and explore your options to help avoid repossession.
How Do You Negotiate a Repossession?
If you default on your auto payment or lease, the lender will likely send someone to pick up your car.
The repossessor may arrive in a tow truck or a vehicle marked “Repo.” He will be armed with paperwork that gives him legal authority to remove your car from wherever it’s parked and take it away.
Here are some tips for negotiating a repossession:
Make Contact Before the Repossession Starts
You may be able to stop the repossession of your vehicle and property before it starts by talking directly to the repo man — this is called negotiating a repossession.
This allows you to explain why you are having trouble making payments on time — perhaps you lost your job or had an unexpected medical bill — and ask if there is anything that can be done about the situation.
Make Contact After the Repossession Starts
If calling doesn’t work, stop by the repo company’s office after your property has been taken. There may be a way to get your property back or make arrangements for its return.
Find Out if the Repossession Was Legal
In some cases, the repossession may not have been done legally. You may get your vehicle back or sue the repo company for damages if it is a wrongful repossession.
How Bankruptcy Can Help You
Bankruptcy can help you negotiate a repossession. When you file bankruptcy, your lender notices that you are having financial difficulties. This gives you more leverage when negotiating with the lender; hence, you are protected from repossession.
Contact a debt relief agency if you have been served with a repossession notice and are considering filing bankruptcy.
How to Reclaim Repossessed Property
If you have been the victim of repossession in Rome and have lost your car or property, there may be a way to reclaim it.
Here’s how to reclaim repossessed property:
Check with Your Lender
Contact your lender first to learn about the process for reclaiming repossessed property. Some lenders will work with you if you can pay off some or all of the balance on your loan. Other lenders will only give you one chance and then sell off their assets to recoup as much money as possible.
Consult an Attorney
If your lender isn’t willing to help you reclaim the repossessed property, contact an attorney who practices in this area of law and ask them what steps are available for regaining possession of your belongings.
Consulting an attorney can be a costly option, but it may be worth it if there is any hope of getting back what was taken from you by a debt collector who had no right to take it in the first place.
Go to Court
If you’ve exhausted all other options, your last resort may be to take your lender to court. This is risky, as you will likely need to hire an attorney, and the outcome is never guaranteed. However, getting your property back may be worth taking this route if you have a strong case.
Do You Need a Dedicated Lawyer for Repossession Cases?
If you are having trouble making car payments or are behind on your mortgage, it is essential to know your rights. A repossession attorney can help protect your property and ensure the process is as smooth as possible.
Bournakis & Mitchell P.C. offers a free consultation. We are happy to answer any questions you have about the repossession process.
What Repossession Lawyers Cannot Do
Repossession lawyers cannot file for bankruptcy on your behalf. They can help you with the process and ensure that you follow all the correct procedures, but they cannot file for you.
Repossession lawyers also cannot guarantee that you will be able to keep your car or property. They can ensure you have done everything necessary to protect yourself from repossession, but they cannot prevent it from happening.
Repossession lawyers can also not give you legal advice on how to avoid being repossessed in the future. Such advice would cover things like refinancing your loan or finding another loan so you can make payments on time again.
How to Hire a Lawyer for a Repossession
Here are some tips for hiring a lawyer for your repossession case:
- Get referrals from friends and family members who have previously gone through the same situation and have established an excellent attorney-client relationship. Then interview at least three different law offices before choosing one to represent you in court.
- Ask each attorney about their experience with repossession cases. How many repossession cases have they handled? What was the outcome of those cases? What percentage of cases did they win?
- Ask each attorney about their fees and payment plans. Lawyers sometimes charge by the hour, while others charge by the case or require an upfront retainer fee with monthly payments.
- Ensure you and your lawyer understand what will happen during the repossession process. As a result, you will be prepared for court appearances, mediation sessions, or other legal matters related to your case.
Get Help From Experienced Rome Bankruptcy Lawyers
Falling behind on securitized loan payments can leave you vulnerable to repossession. Bournakis & Mitchell P.C. provides compassionate and diligent legal services for cases dealing with the car repossession process and other property items.
If you are in danger of having your belongings repossessed, call us today to schedule a free consultation. We will review your case and help you understand your options moving forward. We are here to help you protect your assets and get back on track.
Call us at (706) 295-7376 today to speak with a knowledgeable Rome bankruptcy attorney.