What are a co-signers rights if the loan goes into default?

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What are a co-signers rights if the loan goes into default?

I bought a car for my dad. He is no longer making the payments and it’s ruining my credit I plan to dip into my saving and pay the car off. The problem is, I don’t know where the car is. My name is on the title and the loan is in my name only, but he has paid for the car for two years. Do I have rights to this car. Can I report it as stolen? If so, is he required to give it back to me?

Asked on May 14, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Oklahoma

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Once you pay off the loan that you apparently co-signed for with respect to your dad, under the law he owes you reimbursement of all money paid for his behalf as well as accrued interest. Since your name is on title to the car, it is yours as its registered owner.

If your father cannot advise you of where the car is located, you should report it missing to law enforcement and be factual over what has happened with it and your father. From what you have written, your father is obligated to let you know where your car is located.

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You realize that reporting it stolen will be placing your dad in danger of being arrested and a problem for you for really filing a false report.  It is not a "stolen" car.  Now, you definitely have rights to the car.  You are on the title as an owner so you are an owner.  And you are on the loan. Many co-signers on an account are not on the title.  Your agreement between you and your father will be an issue that will need to be resolved. Paying off the loan is a good idea to protect your credit.  Good luck.


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