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Topics addressed on August 22, 2007:
What you owe after a vehicle is repossessed
If a vehicle is repossessed, do I still have a balance for the vehicle in the full amount that was owed on it? What if I didn’t sign for the vehicle, only as a cosigner? Am I responsible for it?
When you cosign for a loan, whether for a car or any other purchase, you are agreeing to take full responsibility for the debt if the other person fails to pay. Because you cosigned for the car loan, the lender can come to you for payment of the debt.
In this instance, the lender repossessed the car. I suspect it sold the car for less than the remaining amount due. If so, they should not be collecting the entire amount of the debt. Instead, they can collect the amount remaining after the car was sold. That is likely what the lender or collection agency is trying to do now.
I always caution people to be very careful when cosigning for someone else. When you do, you risk your own credit history if they don’t pay as agreed.
Thanks for asking.
- The "Ask Experian" team