What are my options if my car was repossessed by a dealerbecause I’m in a Chapter 13 butI had the trustee’s approval to purchase?

O/17 I bought a car from a “Buy here, pay here” no credit check dealer. I put $1900 down. 4 days later the dealer repossed the car stating he found out ithat I am in Chap 13. I informed the dealer that the bankruptcy court had approved me buying the car. Also, the credit application did not ask if I was in bankruptcy.

Asked on July 24, 2010 under General Practice, North Carolina


MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Repossession can only occur if you did not pay or were late in your payment.  So if one of those two occurred, the dealer could say whatever the reason is but if you were indeed late on a payment (even by one day), the dealer has a right to repossess your vehicle.  That being said, ensure this buy here pay here dealer is licensed in your state to be a sales finance company.  Check with your attorney general or banking department for licensing status.  If he is not licensed and must be, you may have a way out. If it was illegally repossessed (meaning you paid on time), you need to simply file a small claims suit or again file a complaint through the attorney general regarding basically what amounts to conversion of your property.

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