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I am not sure if I did this right yesterday. I bought a car in TN last August(1999). I needed a co-signer so my step-father co-signed with me. I made the down payment and every payment after that for one year. One month i had asked him to come with me to sell my car because I couldn't afford that months payment. He refused saying he would rather keep the car in the family then sell it. So he made the payment for that month. While I was moving to college, he took my car and used it as a trade-in on a car for himself in Alabama. I was unaware he was planning on selling or that he had sold it. I signed no paper work releasing my name from the contract. The dealer told my mother that she could sign in my place. My question is how valid is the sale of the car without my signature on any of the paper work? I was 18 when i bought the car and 19 when he sold it. Thank you, furious in TN


Senior Member
This sounds more of a family dispute than a legal one, and as if a lot more is going on..... And the possible ramifications are most significant in a family sense.

If you were the registered owner on the title only you could have given title to a thrid party. But if he was, and he may have been, he could sign. If you missed a payment you would have lost the car to the finance comany and he would have had to make up the difference between the loan balance plus costs and the sale price; and you would be entitled to have received any equity in the car (if the sale was higher than the loan balance plus costs although I doubt that would be the case -- the finance companies stick it to you on defaults).

I suggestthat you try to get a 3rd party, like aclergy member, to help resolve this amicably because it can get ugly and your Mom is in the middle.

To retain a lawyer, I suggest you go to http://AttorneyPages.com which is endorsed by the Association of Trial Lawyers of America. This response is intended as general information only and NOT LEGAL ADVICE. As you are not my client I have no obligation of any kind to you.

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