What are our rights if my spouse and I went into a contracted agreement with a friend and agree to take over the payments on a vehicle that she was financing?

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What are our rights if my spouse and I went into a contracted agreement with a friend and agree to take over the payments on a vehicle that she was financing?

The vehicle was to remain in her name until was paid off then she has to sign the titles over to one of us. We gave her $7080 10 months ago to go towards the car payments and insurance for a whole year because she had the finance company and insurers set up on auto pay with her bank. Now the insurance on the vehicle expired about 5 months ago and wasn’t renew until approximately 3 weeks ago. So for 5 months the insurance was not on the vehicle. And now all of a sudden she wants the van back. Are we entitled to be reimburse our money back. And is she able to take back the vehicle if we have a sign contract.

Asked on December 5, 2014 under Business Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

As a general rule, a written contract to sell a vehicle at some point in the future (such as when it's paid off) is enforceable, so you should be able to do one of the following: make her transfer the title to you; get your money back; or get some other monetary compensation (e.g. say that the $7,080 you gave her was a particularly good deal, and normally a van of that make, model, year and condition would cost $17,000. Since you would have saved $9,020, you could theoretically get the $9,020 which her violating the agreement would cost you, instead of the $7,080.)

To do this, you'd have to sue her and win.

The reason this answer starts off by sayig "generally" is that contracts are dependent on their specific terms: it is impossible to say exactly what would heppen without an attorney reviewing the actual written agreement as well as the facts in detail.


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