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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Default Texas Auto Reposession - Can I Be Sued for the Deficiency?

    First, thank you for taking the time to read about my situation.

    A few years ago, I divorced and kept the house. The payments were more than I could handle but, I managed to stay afloat for the past two years.

    About three months ago, I had to replace the heater/air conditioning in the home and I began to fall behind on my car payment. My father gave me a fairly new Toyota to drive (the title's free and clear, there is no loan associated with the car).

    So, I voluntarily surrendered (repo) my Honda. They sold it at auction for $12,000 and I owed $18,000. I have been contacted regarding the deficiency amount ($6,000) and asked to make payment arrangements to take care of it. After attempting to work out a payment plan, I still wasn't able to afford the monthly payments to clear up the deficiency amount.

    The lender hasn't said anything about suing me for the amount. The letters are very vague and say, "To avoid further action" etc. I have tried to located specific information about if Texas will allow the lender to sue the debtor for the deficiency amount. A few websites have indicated that Texas has certain laws that protect the consumer from being sued for the deficiency amounts on certain items. Yet, I can't locate any information that specifically pinpoints whether or not I could be sued.

    Lastly, I have a friend (here in Texas) that had her car reposessed after a messy divorce. She was asked to make payment arrangements to take care of the deficiency amount but, like me, she wasn't able to. She wasn't "sued".

    I'm concerned that if I'm sued, they will garnish my wages and I'll be right back in a bad spot, again. Or, that they'll try and put a lien on my home. Is that possible if I still have a mortgage on it?

    My questions:

    1. Does Texas protect the consumer from being sued for the deficiency amount of a repossed auto (loan)?

    2. If I am sued, since I don't have anything of real value other than my home (that I'm paying the mortgage on), can they place a lien on my home?

    Any advice you could offer would be great.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Texas: Auto Reposession. Can I be sued for the deficiency?

    Of course you can be sued for the deficiency. You breached your contract and cost them a lot of money.

    They can't garnish your wages in Texas. They may be able to put a lien on your home once they obtain a judgment.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Texas: Auto Reposession. Can I be sued for the deficiency?

    Hey sorry to hear your having a hard time with the bills lately.
    To answer your question yes you can be sued in Texas for the balance owed and for all additional costs ie: lawyer fees court cost etc.
    However in the state of Texas they can only garnish your wages for child support or I.R.S.
    But you should know that they can and will seize your bank accounts and take the money in there. They will then release the account wait for you to put money in it then do it again.
    If you only own one house in the state of Texas they cannot take it regardless if it is paid off or not!
    The same goes for one vehicle in your name!
    Although the judgement will last 10 yrs. and can be renewed after that, if you have a judgement against you when you sell your house or car they will get their money off the top.
    Basically they have to serve you then you will have 10-20 days to respond or they will automatically place a judgement against your general name and can take quite a bit without asking extra t.v.'s etc.
    If they do serve you make sure you respond you can always get an agreed judgement which will be structured payments or possibly a settlement and after you pay it will be removed from your credit report =~)

    by the way they only have a certain period of time to sue I think 3 yrs on auto in Texas see statute of limitations also take some time to familiarize yourself with the F.D.C.P.A. laws which can be found on the internet if they violate it during collection and you can prove it not only can you get their lawsuit dismissed but you can sue them

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