If Ileased a car in a family member’s name and now they have voluntarily repossessed it, is there anythingthat Ican do?

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If Ileased a car in a family member’s name and now they have voluntarily repossessed it, is there anythingthat Ican do?

My sister in-law volunteered to lease a car in her name for me. Now about 1 1/2 years later she had called the loan company and told them to come take the car back. I’ve made every monthly payment so far and now I have no idea what to do.

Asked on November 5, 2010 under Bankruptcy Law, Illinois

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

How terrible.  That was not a very nice thing to do but I am unsure how to resolve this in your favor.  Although you could argue that there was a "sublease" as a contract to you. those type of sublease are probably not permitted under the primary lease with the finance company and/ or dealership.  So your "sublease" would be void or voidable.  Second, that type of sublease could be a violation of the Statute of Frauds, which states that certain contracts must be in writing to be valid.  In some states if the contract could not be performed within one year that could be a violation.  The only consolation you may have is that they will be going after her for the remainder of the lease money and not you.  Good luck.


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