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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Default How To Repossess Car We Sold Privately

    My question involves an auto loan or repossession in the State of: WI

    We bought the car for my 18-yr-old niece for $4000 while she was living w/ us for 8 months before she graduated high school. We drew up a contract outlining payment due dates, amounts, interest, late fees, repossession, requiring full insurance at all times, must notify us if she moves, changes jobs or cannot pay, etc.

    Just before graduation, she moved out & in w/ a friend about 15 minutes away. At that time, due to many stints of her lying, drinking, skipping school, etc., we had her sign over the title w/ the understanding that we would not take it over unless she defaulted on the loan as per our contract. This was put into the contract as well. We are not listed as lien holder, but we do have the signed title & the spare key.

    4 or 5 months later, she ends up in the hospital (self-induced), gets fired & cannot make her payments. We tell her to get well, get counseling, get back on her feet & keep us posted. She let us know when she was "on her feet", that she was moving in w/ her parents 2 hours away & getting a new job. Great. She got a job. Months later, still no payments, no phone calls, no updates, etc.

    Phone calls, text messages, letters & emails from us were not returned by her. We let her know that we were repossessing the car as per the contract. She finally texted w/ a story of another new job, another new place to live, etc. & to give her more time. Gave her more time...nothing. Tried contacting her again...nothing.

    3 weeks later, we get a text msg from her stating she wasn't ignoring us, her cousin died & that she'd call us "when it was all over". I told her we would let her keep the car long enough to get to the funeral 2 hours away. Gave her two weeks. Contacted her again and nothing.

    So, now we are done and want to go pick up the car. We had to look up her last known address on police public records site (on a whim that she may have had some violation and sure enuf there she was from May) & we have the last place of employment that she told us. Our mail person left us a stack of her mail w/ a note stating "this person has moved so much & put in so many mail-forwarding requests, we don't know which one is current anymore".

    Is there anything else that we need to do legally before driving up there, letting local law enforcement know what we're doing, hopefully finding the car at either her work or last known address, and taking possession of the car?

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: How To Repossess Car We Sold Privately

    The car is titled in whose name? If it's solely in hers, your remedy is to sue her for the money she owes.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Default Re: How To Repossess Car We Sold Privately

    Thank you very much!

    The title is in her name; however we had her sign it & give it to us when she moved out with the understanding that if she defaulted, we would put it in our name & repossess. That was in the contract as well. So at this time, we have the signed title & can take it to the DMV & have it placed into our names tomorrow.

    Does that change your answer?

    Thank you again!

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