Keep Your Car During Bankruptcy


Repossession Lawyer in Bend & Portland Oregon


“Will I be able to keep my car in bankruptcy?” Our Portland repossession lawyers and bankruptcy attorneys will often get this question from people considering bankruptcy, followed by “They can’t take my car! How would I get to work!”

The reality is that most people do not lose their car when they file for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Portland, Oregon. Like most things in bankruptcy, the law behind reality is much more complex so a true lawyer’s answer would be “It depends”, It depends on whether you have equity in your car and if so how much equity. It also depends on whether you have other assets which require protection from the Chapter 7 Trustee or not. To keep this as simple as possible let’s go through a flowchart:

OBrien Bankruptcy Flow Chart_v2

The risk of losing your car in Chapter 7 bankruptcy goes up as the value or equity in the car goes up. It also depends on whether you have more than one car and what other assets you own. If you went through the above flowchart and are concerned that you would lose your car but need to explore bankruptcy protection, our Portland repossession lawyer can help.

To understand this more clearly, we will parse the benefits of applying for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy and how it can help you save your car.

Chapter 7: Car Repossession / Car Loans


The primary purpose of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is to put the debtor in a much more convenient financial situation after going insolvent. This means when you apply for Chapter 7, most of your debts will be cleared – which is also called Debt Relief.

After successfully applying for Chapter 7, the Automatic Stay takes effect immediately. This means that debt collectors must stop any collection activities, and that includes car repossession. However, there are still some exemptions on that.

Repossessing a car in Chapter 7 is still possible when:

  • you have a car that is of high value
  • you own more cars which can equate to your debts.

If you have an impending car repossession, there are a few possible options for your to consider. Consult with a reliable car repossession lawyer so we can help you with your case.

Reaffirmation Agreement


This option means you have to make another agreement with your car creditor to make continuous monthly payments on your car loan. Although this might not be the best solution since the debtor is in a financial crisis, you can apply this if you have an ongoing or continuous reliable source of income for its monthly payment or agreed-on payment schedule. This may, however, become another problem if the debtor entered into a payment agreement after filing Chapter 7.

Another thing is that the Reaffirmation agreement mostly happens if the debtor is updated on the balance or payment schedule. If you are left behind with the monthly payment, most reaffirmation agreements don’t work.

On the other hand, if the debtor is completely updated with the payment schedule even after declaring Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, then a reaffirmation agreement might be considered on both the debtor and creditor sides. However, to fully implement this, there are specific legal procedures to take place.

A Portland car repossession lawyer might help and give insights on whether this type of action is preferred. Our experienced bankruptcy attorneys in Portland can also help with signing papers and negotiation to keep your car and help you reaffirm secured debts required by the United States Court.

Redeem Car Possession


When a debtor filed for bankruptcy, the car credit can still expect payment from the debtor. Redeeming your car means that you will undergo an agreement to pay the car’s value to the creditor in a lump sum. Since the debtor filed Chapter 7 mostly doesn’t have enough cash to pay for the car’s value – it can also be agreed upon and negotiated for payment restructuring.

For redeeming your car possession, primarily, through the help of a reliable car repossession attorney, they will help you find the significant value of the car on its current market. Because the debtor applied for bankruptcy, you will only pay for its current market value instead of paying the deficiency balance or debt.

Although this method seems easy, it can still be complex due to legal steps and proper procedures. Since you filed for bankruptcy and the court expected you to be insolvent, redeeming a car needs legal steps. Make sure to work with your local Portland bankruptcy attorney for filing the motion to redeem.

After Filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, a debtor needs to apply for Secure Debts reaffirmation, especially if a property such as a car loan is prone to repossessing because this can be considered a secured debt. Failing to do so might lead to your car getting repossessed.

Consult a car repossession lawyer in Portland today to know how you can keep your car through filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Car Repossession


Filing for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy may result in a higher chance of getting your car back, which depends highly on your repayment plan approved by the Bankruptcy Court.

According to the U.S Courts, the benefit of filing for Chapter 13 is to give the debtor another chance to secure some of their assets or personal property through an efficient repayment plan or Debt Settlement.

After a successful file for bankruptcy, just like in Chapter 7, an “Automatic Stay” will also occur. This means that no other collection or foreclosure of property shall take place under its duration. However, if your car has already been taken back before filing for bankruptcy or right after your filing, you may still be able to get your car back.

Consult a Portland car repossession lawyer today to know how you can keep your car through filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Car Repayment Plan


When the creditor or lender has already taken your car, you might still get them back by paying back the car on a much lower interest or value. You can do this with the help of your car repossession attorney. This method is also known as a cramdown.For example, if a car you bought three years ago is worth $8,000, after applying for bankruptcy, you might be able to only pay your car on its current market value (ex: the value now will only be $6,000.).

If, however, the car repossessed has been sold by the lender or creditor, there’s nothing much you can do. Getting your car back from the person they sold it to will be another problem and give more problems than it’s worth.

To know whether you are eligible for filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, consult a reliable Portland bankruptcy attorney. Chapter 13 offers many benefits to the debtor to keep most of their personal property by reducing the interest and total debt owed.

Consult a Portland car repossession lawyer today to know how you can keep your car through filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Talk to a Car Repossession Attorney Today!


Repossessing your car is one of the stressful events that might happen after filing for bankruptcy. It serves many purposes to continue with everyday life, such as commuting to and from work, picking up kids to school, and running essential errands. When your car has been repossessed, or on the verge of losing it, it is essential to seek help from reliable car repossession attorneys.

At Michael D. O’Brien & Associates, Our Oregon bankruptcy attorneys are ready and able to advise you on how best to protect the assets you own while still receiving the protection of the Oregon bankruptcy Court. Call us today to get legal assistance in filing bankruptcy Chapter 13, Chapter 11, or Chapter 7 and guidance in exploring other debt alternatives in Bend, Clackamas, Portland, and more communities in Oregon.

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Whether you're dealing with overwhelming debt, stopping foreclosure or repossession proceedings, or looking for a way to protect your assets, our Portland bankruptcy attorneys are here to help you overcome your financial hurdles!

Please be aware that submission of this no-obligation form does not establish an attorney-client relationship. By filling out the form, you agree to receiving emails from our firm regarding your case evaluation and other helpful resources. 

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Disclaimer:By submitting this form you consent to our privacy policy. If you prefer contact via text you understand that *regular text message rates may apply. The information presented on this site should not be construed as formal legal advice and your submission of this form does not establish a lawyer/client relationship. We are proud to be a debt relief agency who frequently, but not always, helps people get relief through bankruptcy.

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FACING COMPLEX DEBT PROBLEMS?

Whether you're dealing with overwhelming debt, stopping foreclosure or repossession proceedings, or looking for a way to protect your assets, our Portland bankruptcy attorneys are here to help you overcome your financial hurdles!

Please be aware that submission of this no-obligation form does not establish an attorney-client relationship. By filling out the form, you agree to receiving emails from our firm regarding your case evaluation and other helpful resources.