What to do if someone has defaulted on an installment purchaseloan so has returned the itembut badly damaged?

UPDATED: Dec 26, 2011

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What to do if someone has defaulted on an installment purchaseloan so has returned the itembut badly damaged?

A contract was written. The man would make monthly payments over the winter for my motorcycle. He told me he could not make the payments and I told him to bring the bike back. He did but it arrived looking like it had been in an accident. I will not take the bike back because it will cost me a lot to fix and I can’t let him keep it because he owes me the money. Can I sue him in small claims court?

Asked on December 26, 2011 under Business Law, Wisconsin


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You can sue for breach of contract for the buyer's failure to make the payments according to the terms of the contract. 

Depending on the contract price, you may be able to file your lawsuit in Small Claims Court.  Your damages (the amount you are seeking to recover in your lawsuit) would be the amount the other party owes you plus court costs.  Court costs would include the court filing fee and process server fee.  You can find process servers in the Yellow Pages or online listed under attorney services.

If you obtain a judgment against the buyer, to enforce the judgment it would be advisable to obtain a wage garnishment.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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