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creditor issue--what are my rights?

Discussion in 'Other Debt, Collection, Garnishment' started by ebharris, Sep 28, 2001.

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  1. ebharris

    ebharris Law Topic Starter New Member

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    This is confusing and I hope I posted in appropriate forum. I leased a Jeep through GE Capital with a now ex-girlfriend (not married) in 11/96--I was the primary signor, the ex was secondary. Term was to run to 11/99-we split up before then on good terms. Supposedly, she bought out lease in 8/99 and later traded the vehicle around 8/2000 and purchased the vehicle. GE claims this never happened and the title history supports GE. They claim I owe excess rent and associated repo fees totaling $5500 for the use of vehicle between 11/99 (when lease ended) and 9/2000 when they sold at auction (whereas supposedly the ex traded in this vehicle for new vehicle).
    1. I never received any notice from GE that there was a problem to begin with. Their records show they sent 2 mailings with my name, but the exgirlfriends address--they were both returned to sender because postmaster did not recognize as valid. They claim they called me, but I never received a message stating who, and why they were calling--as if they assume i am a deadbeat that they have to be stealthy with. It then gets turned over to collections over the summer--I was in europe all summer, so I dont get these messages until Sept. So I am upset because I feel GE never adequately or sufficiently attempted to make contact with me in the first place--do I have any legal grounds to stand on that they turned over to collections before making a real attempt to contact me? The collection agency sure had no problem finding me! Meanwhile this has also been reported to credit bureaus, ruining my credit. They also are not to helpful because they have already turned over to collections so they do not want to deal with me.
    2. Assuming exgirlfriend is telling truth and she can furnish documentation that supports her story (yes, i am an idiot for not getting this stuff at the time these transaction supposedly occurred) Im sure I can get matter settled. Problem is that she is now not returning my calls or otherwise being forthcoming in providing this documentation and I am getting frustrated and collection agency continues to call me. This going on for month now. Since GE considers me responsible for the car, and I am taking all the heat, what rights (legal, and is she possibly guilty of any criminal activity like auto theft or something) do I have as far as the ex is concerned? Diplomacy does not seem to be working--how can I make her help me or determine for sure if she lied or otherwise messed up the transaction she claims happened?

    I know I am guilty of assuming everything was taken care of appropriately by her.. Hope I am not screwed here also. Thanks!
     
  2. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

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    You may be able to sue her for indemnification (responsibility to reimburse you for all your costs, including attorneys fees, etc.) or even enjoin her as a party to any lawsuit you may be involved (add her name to a suit as a party). You may want to inform her that if she does not provide you with adequate documentation, that may be exactly what will happen. It doesn't mean that you are off the hook -- since you are primary signator, you are responsible.

    1. The problem with your notification from GE is that, as primary signator, I'm sure that there is a clause that you are required to notify them if you change your address. Check your agreement -- this is VERY important. They lent you the money and it isn't their responsibility to have to track you down when they don't receive the money that you promised them they would receive.

    2. Call up the ex and send her a written letter, certified mail return receipt requested, stating the above. You'd like to do this the amicable and easy way -- just send all necessary documentation. However, she should know that she is responsible to you for the car and that you will be forced to enjoin her to any lawsuit or collection proceeding. She may be ultimately responsible for any and all costs that you are associated with this matter and which you will be liable to pay.

    I find that people are more prone to cooperate when they realize that they may be on the hook for liability. Not so easy to blow off! ;)
     

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