Can a collection agency take your vehicle?

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Can a collection agency take your vehicle?

Asked on January 8, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There are two circumstances under which they can take the vehicle:

1) They are collecting on a debt for the vehicle (e.g. the financing you used to buy it), in which case there is almost certainly a security interest in the car which allows them to repossess in the event of a default. (This would also apply if you used the car as collaterol for a loan.)

2) They sue you on some other debt and win (or someone else sued you and won, and either transferred the debt to the collections agency or hired them to collect on it); you do not pay; they then get a court order enabling them, via the sheriff or a constable, to "execute" on your car--that is, to have it seized and auctioned or sold, and the proceeds applied to the judgment.


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