A man stressing out after his car was taken by the primary lienholder.

How Much Time Before A Title Loan Company Can Repossess My Vehicle?

Are you worried your lender will repossess your vehicle because of a lack of payment? Falling behind on your loan is not ideal, and there’s always a chance your car will be repossessed. However, it helps to know your rights and take action to avoid repossession. Even if fall behind on the payments, you still have time to fix the situation!


Avoid Repossession After Taking Out A Title Loan

While some online title loan lenders want you to believe they can push you around, repossession hurts them almost as much as it hurts you. Therefore, if you can work with them, many lenders will respond positively because they would rather you get back on track than force their hand and initiate a repossession. You can best contact your lender and let them know if you face sudden financial difficulty.

It is uncomfortable to call a lender and tell them that you lost your job or are temporarily experiencing hardship, so most people dig their heads in the sand instead. However, maintaining contact and letting a lender know that while you may default this month, you can get back on track shortly could mean the difference between one missed payment and a repossession.


A man stressing out after his car was taken by the primary lienholder.


Title Loan Repossession Laws

The repossession laws for car title loans vary from state to state. In some states, your lender has to wait two weeks before they can even consider taking your vehicle. Other states make them wait a month or more before they can start the repossession procedures. This means that after accounting for the state regulations, it’s entirely up to your lender on how they want to handle your situation.

Check your loan documents to review what happens if you miss payments and default. All lenders need to break down your rights explicitly, and there should be language in the contract that specifies how much time you have to avoid a vehicle repossession.


What Happens After A Title Loan Company Repossessed My Vehicle

After a repossession, most people are shocked and want to know what happens to their vehicle. Will it be immediately sold, or is it just sitting in a lot somewhere unused? While this often depends on the state law, which can force lenders to follow a strict process before selling a vehicle, there is a general process that most lenders will follow.

Part of the shock of repossession is when the lender takes possession of the vehicle. No one will knock on your door or tell you the time has officially come. Repossessions are not enjoyable for either party and usually happen quickly and stealthily. One day, you may walk your door to work, and your car is not there, or it may even be repossessed from the workplace parking lot, leaving you stranded.

Following the repossession, the auto equity lender may allow you to make payments and get up-to-date to get your vehicle back. Do your part and talk with the lender, see if there’s any way they will work with you to lower the amount owed, and negotiate a new payoff contract. Once again, state law plays a role here, but it is usually in the lender’s best interest to accept your payments if you can settle your account versus finding a new buyer at an auction. Develop different approaches and settlement amounts to see how the loan can be paid off more quickly. After the cooling-off period ends, the lender will auction your vehicle to recoup some losses.