Personal Property In My Repossessed Vehicle
Most people have stuff in their vehicles - sunglasses, paperwork, tools, child car-seats, and other items. This is very normal - very few people have an empty car! Many consumers wonder about their rights related to the "personal property" in the vehicle after it has been repossessed. Many worry their belongings are gone and that they have no rights to the belongings. Rest assured, that is not the case - you can get the items back.
How To Get your Personal Property Back after a Repossession
Here are the steps to follow to get your personal property back after a repossession:
1. Contact the Lender: the first step is to find out the identity of the repossession company. You'll need this info so you know where to go to pick up your belongings.
2. Contact the Repo Agent: most places require you to schedule a time to pick up your belongings. We recommend calling the repossession agent to ask, versus attempting to drop by unannounced.
3. Picking up You Belongings: most places will have your belongings in a box and/or bag. Be polite to the agent: if there are items missing, document the missing items.
4. Signing Documents: you may be asked to sign documents when reclaiming your items. You should not (nor do you have to) sign away any rights to reclaim your items. Many repossession agents try and force consumers to sign away any rights related to the repossession, missing personal property, or damage claims during this stage of the process. READ everything they ask you to sign, and if faced with some documents talking about waiving rights, you should refuse to sign such a documents. You can also ask about crossing out the offending language before signing the form.
What if I Am Missing Items?
If you are missing items, ask the repossession agent if they have a form to report missing personal property. You should also document what's missing. You can also ask the repossession agent for the contact information for their insurance carrier, so you can file a claim.
What if They Want to Charge me a Storage or Personal Property Fee?
If you are asked to pay a fee, please contact our office right away for a free consultation. There are a variety of facts, laws, and issues surrounding the charging of fees in these situations. Attorney Nathan DeLadurantey would love to speak to you regarding your specific situation if this occurs.
Do I have Other Rights?
Wisconsin consumers have many rights in a repossession situation. These rights include required pre-repossession notices, how to stop an active repossession, the involvement of the police in the repossession process, return of vehicles after repossession, and trespassing on private property during a repossession.
If you feel your rights have been violated, we can discuss your rights to bring a lawsuit against the lender or repossession company. It is important that you act quickly as the law only provides a short amount of time to sue these companies. Schedule your free consult today.
We provide representation in automobile and vehicle repossession cases in Wisconsin, including Racine, Kenosha, Green Bay, Appleton, the Fox Valley, Milwaukee, West Allis, Waukesha, Walworth County, Dane County, Madison, La Crosse, Eau Claire, Superior, Ashland, and anywhere in-between.