I receive many calls per week in my San Diego debt relief law firm asking for a free consultation about debt relief problems.  Last week someone asked me, “should I hire a wrongful repossession lawyer to get back my repossessed car?”  So I will tell you what I told him.   Let’s say you owe money to an auto lender. If you cannot pay back that loan, then the lender will most likely seek to retake possession of the car. There is no need for them to file a lawsuit. They just send out a company to pick up the car upon default. This happens routinely once you stop making payment on your car loan. But what makes the repossession wrongful?


Whats A Wrongful Repossession

A wrongful repossession happens when the creditor takes your car back without an actual default under the loan agreement. The most common default is failure to make payments when due. But other defaults under a loan agreement can trigger a repossession, such as failure to maintain proper insurance. However, not only must there be a default. There must also be a breach of the peace in the repossession of your car. There are several forms of breach of the peace and you should consult with an attorney to review your situation to see if it meets this test.


Whatever the case may be, when a car is being repossessed, certain legal guidelines must be followed or the repossession is unlawful. The person who called me felt that his car has been wrongfully repossessed and wanted to know if he should hire a lawyer to get his car back.   It turned out that he had not received proper written notification after the car had been repossessed. Right there I knew he had a potential case against the lender.  You need written notification about the repossession and what is going to come next. The lender also needs to give you paperwork about how they can remedy the default to get the car back.  Since this was not done, we are moving forward to seek damages and other relief he is entitled to.  So in this case, it made sense to hire an attorney for an illegal vehicle repossession.


If the lender does not provide proper written notification after the repossession, then the consumer may seek statutory damages under the California and federal fair debt collection laws. This may also include can also get an award for attorney’s fees and costs. You may also be able to have the deficiency balance (the amount remaining due on the loan after the sale of the car) waived. Under a theory of conversion (civil theft) you may be able to seek punitive damages as well as damages for loss of use of your car.


Wrongful Repossession Lawyer In San Diego

If you have questions about a wrongful repossession or other debt relief problems, then contact me for a free debt consultation to go over your options.


Daniel R. Gamez, an attorney focusing exclusively in debt relief, is licensed to practice in all state and federal courts in California and Texas. Mr. Gamez owns and operates the Gamez Law Firm in San Diego, CA. For more information, please contact Daniel Gamez at 858-217-5051, daniel@gamezlawfirm.com or use our online contact form. Stay updated with the latest debt relief tips by following on Facebook and Twitter!