Vehicle ownership and Chapter 13 bankruptcy
On Behalf of O’Brien Law Firm, LLC
Posted on: February 28, 2018
If they have a steady stream of income, debtors in Mississippi may use a Chapter 13 bankruptcy to pay off their substantial debts. They will have three to five years to use their disposable income to resolve their debts. If individuals currently have a vehicle or would like to purchase one during any stage of the bankruptcy process, this still can be achieved. However, there are some factors that have to be considered.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy filers who possess a vehicle before they file a petition may keep their vehicle except in certain cases. If the payments for the vehicle are extremely costly, the court may prevent the debtor from including the payment when calculating their disposable income. The expensive payment may be considered unreasonable as filers are only permitted to retain living expenses that are necessary and sensible.
Debtors who have an upside down auto loan and purchased their vehicle at least 910 days before submitting a bankruptcy petition may opt to cramdown the loan for the bankruptcy process. This allows the loan to be reduced to the amount of the vehicle’s cash value. The excess amount is included with the unsecured debts.
For debtors who are not current with their vehicle payments, filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy stays most collections, including repossession of the vehicle. The payments in arrears may be included in the bankruptcy plan, and if the debtors make the remaining payments, they may be able to retain ownership of the vehicle.
Individuals who have substantial debt may consult a bankruptcy attorney about their legal options. A lawyer may advise individuals how a Chapter 13 bankruptcy may apply in their case if they have a regular income. People may be advised of how a bankruptcy may help them have a fresh financial start by reducing interest and stopping creditor harassment.