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4 min read Published October 25, 2022

Written by Mia Taylor Written by Contributing Writer Mia Taylor is a contributor to Bankrate and an award-winning journalist who has two decades of experience and worked as a staff reporter or contributor for some of the nation’s leading newspapers and websites including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the San Diego Union-Tribune, TheStreet, MSN and Written by Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor Rhys has been writing and editing for Bankrate since the beginning of 2021. They are passionate about helping readers to control their finances with concise, well-researched and informative facts that break down complicated topics into bite-sized pieces. The Bankrate promise

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So, this compensation can influence the manner, place and in what order products appear in listing categories and categories, unless it is prohibited by law. We also offer mortgage home equity, mortgage and other products for home loans. Other factors, like our own website rules and whether the product is offered in the area you reside in or is within your own personal credit score may also influence how and where products appear on this website. Although we try to offer an array of offers, Bankrate does not include details about each credit or financial product or service. If you’ve got an auto loan that has fallen behind the lender could decide to charge off the loan that is, the lender believes that you won’t be able to repay the debt. Having a loan charged off doesn’t mean that you’re no longer on the obligation to pay. The charge doesn’t affect the original terms of your loan. In many cases, the lender may that will be pursuing repayment with you. Understand your responsibilities and what procedures will take place prior to and after the charge-off. What an auto loan charge-off is During a charge-off, businesses transfer an account, such as an , from their asset column to a liability for accounting purposes. The majority of lenders make this move after unsuccessfully trying to collect a debt for an extended period. For record-keeping purposes it is the lender is declaring the debt insolvent. Auto loans generally have to be paid off within 120 days of the non-payment. An auto loan may be charged off in as little as 60 days, if the lender receives notice by the lender that the debtor has declared bankruptcy. When lenders or businesses take over a debt, they are able to write off the debt for tax purposes. However, you still owe the amount and nothing regarding the terms of the loan is altered due to the lender adopting this method. You are still fully responsible to pay back the loan. How does an auto loan charge-off process works If a lender finds an auto loan indebtedness uncollectible, it may decide to start the charge-off process. The steps involved in this process have an impact on you the customer. The debt shifts from liability to asset. The first step of an auto loan charge-off is merely an accounting classification. The lender moves the loan from its asset column, and then officially classifies it as a liability, meaning that the loan is no longer considered income to the lender. Instead, it is considered to be a loss. Notification of default. Depending on your state the lender may be required to mail you an official notice of default, and offer you the chance to repay the loan. This is not the case for every state. A third-party collection agency may take over the collection. Often when the original lender takes charge of a loan the loan is then transferred to a third party, like a collection agency, who will pursue the repayment of debt. Collection efforts may include suing you to collect. If there’s a judgment against your the amount of your wages may be garnished to pay. The charge-off is reported to credit bureaus. Once a debt is charged off by the lender, your credit score also takes a reduction. This is because the charge-off is usually not reported to any credit bureaus. The charge-off will appear on your credit profile as charged off as a grave negative signal that you didn’t meet the obligation. This negative mark may remain on your report for up to seven years. You may see as much as a 100-point decline on your score. Additionally, you can have trouble securing an auto loan in the future. Repossession of a vehicle. Secured auto loans and the car serves as a security for the debt it could be . A vehicle for a long time. Cars that are charged off car loan is typically secured using the vehicle bought with the loan. If you don’t make payments in time, the lender may take possession of and sell the car in order to make up the difference. However, if you are charged a lender is able to charge off an auto loan and you don’t pay it back, you might be able to keep driving the vehicle — at the very least, for a short time. Based on the location you reside in the lender must issue a default notice and allow you to get the loan up to date prior to repossession. In these instances, you can if you or make satisfactory payment arrangements. However it is not the case in all states. this requirement. If you decide to purchase the vehicle, it doesn’t back the loan and cannot be repossessed from the lender. What should you do in the event that your car loan is charged off When your car loan has been charged off There are a few ways to proceed. If your account has not yet been turned over to a collection agency, you may contact the lender and ask whether you could make a one-time payment to clear up the outstanding debt. This is referred to as a You might also try to negotiate loan terms that are more manageable for you. It is also possible to research the laws for your state to find out how long the lender or a collection agency will continue to try and collect from you. The time limit for a statute of limitations is between three to 10-years from when you default dependent on the location you reside in. Be aware that the charge-off will remain on your credit report for seven years, and will affect your ability to get more car loans. Charge-offs on loans can also impact the rates you pay for future loans Therefore, you should pay off the debt immediately if you are able. If you’re experiencing financial problems, you may be considering the possibility of filing for bankruptcy. All charged-off loans are required to be considered in the bankruptcy filing. The next step depends on the type of bankruptcy you decide to file. Options may include: Reaffirming the loan and continuing to make payments. Redeeming the car by paying off the loan in one lump sum. Surrendering the car to the creditor, who will then sell it to pay off the outstanding debt and then discharge the rest. The bottom line When the vehicle loan is discharged but you’re still accountable for the repayment of the debt. Once a lender has charged off an auto loan, you’ll likely be dealing with a third-party collection company. Your car can be repossessed or you could be sued for repayment. Credit card debts that are repaid off also affect your credit score. If you are behind on auto loan payments The first step is reaching out to your lender or collection company to settle the debt or negotiate manageable repayment terms. You may even seek a car loan settlement. If you’re being sued to repay, you must most likely speak with an attorney.


Written by Contributing Writer Mia Taylor is a contributor to Bankrate and an award-winning journalist who has two decades of experience and worked as a staff reporter or contributor for some of the nation’s leading newspapers and websites including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the San Diego Union-Tribune, TheStreet, MSN and The article was edited by Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor Rhys has been editing and writing for Bankrate since the end of 2021. They are passionate about helping readers gain the confidence to take control of their finances by providing clear, well-researched facts that break down otherwise complicated topics into digestible pieces.

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