When you purchase a new car with a loan or some other type of financing in Nevada, the creditor that loans you the money gains an interest in your vehicle. This security interest, also known as a lien, empowers your creditor to seize the car if you default on your loan payments. In fact, most loans allow your creditor to repossess your vehicle after one missed payment. In reality, it typically takes several months of missed payments for a lender to initiate repossession.
One obvious way to halt repossession is to get current on your payments. That would mean not only making all of the missed payments but covering any late fees and interest that accrued due to your default. Curing your default will bring repossession attempts to an end. In fact; it is possible to get caught up after your vehicle has already been repossessed if you act quickly.
For many people, though, catching up isn't an option. Circumstances change, and a loan that seemed reasonable a few years ago may be out of reach given your current finances. If you are in a position where you can't simply cure your default on your auto loan, bankruptcy may be the answer for you.
Filing for Bankruptcy Protection
Just by merely filing for protection under the bankruptcy code, all repossession efforts will be immediately halted. This is due to what's known as the “automatic stay.” According to bankruptcy law, all of your creditor's collection efforts are automatically stayed the moment you file, at least temporarily. A bankruptcy filing can give you the time that you need to reorganize your debts in a way that has you financially stable going forward.
During the course of a bankruptcy, your attorney may be able to reorganize your car loan. This can include spreading out your defaulted payments over the next few years so that you exit bankruptcy caught up on your loan. If the interest rate you are paying is high, your plan may be able to modify the rate going forward.
In some cases, you may even be able to reduce the total amount of the debt. This is especially true if you own an older vehicle and owe more money on it than its market value. In that case, the court may allow you to “cram down” the amount of principle to match the market value. For example, if you owe $10,000 on your loan but your car is only worth $4,000, it is possible that your total loan could be reduced by $6,000. With a lowered interest rate and a principle amount that matches your car's market value, you have a shot at a fresh start financially.
Facing Repossession? Discuss Your Options With an Experienced Bankruptcy Attorney
There are a lot of possibilities when it comes to restructuring an auto loan, but every repossession case is different. That's why it is important to discuss your case with an experienced Nevada bankruptcy attorney. To discuss your case with Nevada bankruptcy lawyers you can rely on, contact Vohwinkel Law today for your free consultation at 702-735-1500.