A common question that our clients ask us is whether they can purchase a vehicle either during or after their bankruptcy and, if so, who can they contact to do so? Several lenders and car companies advertise the ability to finance someone either during or after a bankruptcy. Do your research carefully and choose someone that you trust and that provides what you believe to be a sound running vehicle. Make sure you inspect a vehicle that you are purchasing, especially if it is a used vehicle. Also, be aware that you will, many times, buy a used vehicle as is, meaning that the seller makes no warranty with regard to the vehicle itself.
Here in north Alabama, we are frequently asked how someone can obtain a vehicle either after their Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy has been discharged or, if even if someone is currently in an active Chapter 13 bankruptcy. One person that we know has over 13 years of sales experience in helping people locally in the automotive business is Bridget Beane. She is located at Honda of Decatur, Alabama and can be contacted confidentially here (address Bridget in your message) or by calling 256-355-3636, ext 2435. While we don’t specifically endorse any particular dealer/dealership/broker/salesperson, Ms. Beane has experience in dealing with people from all different types of financial backgrounds. According to Ms. Beane, “both we and our lenders recognize the need for customers either in or discharged from bankruptcy to purchase vehicles and I will do my best to help them.” Again, always do your research in buying a vehicle and performing a detailed inspection of any vehicle that you are purchasing is always a prudent idea. Please feel free to contact Ms. Beane since she has expressed an interest in assisting our clients, if she can, in order to help them obtain a vehicle.
As always, our lawyers try to provide services where we can to our clients and this is just one of the ways that we would like to let people know that it is possible to purchase a vehicle after bankruptcy and while in a bankruptcy. Please note that it is our advice to not purchase a vehicle while in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy prior to the discharge and that you are well advised to wait until after the bankruptcy is discharged in order to purchase a vehicle. With regard to a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, since it is an ongoing bankruptcy case for the period of up to sixty months, it sometimes becomes inevitable that you will need to purchase a car during that time. In most jurisdictions you need either Court or Trustee permission in order to purchase a vehicle while in a chapter 13. This vehicle will not be allowed to be included in the Chapter 13 plan since it is a post-petition debt that was acquired after the bankruptcy filing and any payment arrangement you enter into will be required to be paid directly by you to the new creditor that holds the vehicle title. It is important, however, to remember that you must get the Court or Trustee permission, as the jurisdiction dictates, before you enter into any type of contract to purchase a vehicle that you will pay for on your own outside of your Chapter 13 plan.
If you are having trouble with your finances and would like to explore your situation, please feel free to contact our office nearest to you to set up a free consultation visit to speak with one of our licensed attorneys about your financial situation in a confidential and private setting.
Ron Sykstus is a Managing Partner of several of the Bond & Botes Law Offices throughout Alabama. He holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Arizona, Tucson, and a Juris Doctorate from the Northern Illinois University College of Law. Ron has served in numerous positions throughout the U.S. Army and now utilizes his expertise in the areas of VA issues, security clearances, military law, and bankruptcy to assist his clients when they need it most. Read his full bio here.