Can a mechanic hold a vehicle that has been filed under Chapter 13 Bankruptcy if they are owed money?

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Can a mechanic hold a vehicle that has been filed under Chapter 13 Bankruptcy if they are owed money?

A mechanic is holding my vehicle hostage for repairs done to the vehicle. However, I filed a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in order to reaffirm payments on the vehicle, and the mechanics bill was filed under the Chapter 13 Bankruptcy as well. Does the mechanic have the legal right to continue to hold my vehicle hostage? I thought the mechanic had to give me the vehicle back the moment bankruptcy was filed.

Asked on August 2, 2011 Florida

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

When the bankruptcy petition was filed by you it sets the status quo of all disputes between you and your creditors. Under the laws of all states in this country, your mechanic has a statutory lien for work done on your vehicle where he or she is a priority creditor.

Until there is an order from the bankruptcy court ordering the mechanic to release your vehicle, the mechanic is entitled to retain possession of it.


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