Is It Legal to Protest a Rightful Car Repossession?

When you protest a repossession, the repo agent must listen, otherwise it is a breach of peace. You have consumer protection rights that need to be protected here and deserve justice.


Perhaps money has been a little tight and you’re waiting on your next paycheck to send your car payment. Some states allow vehicle repossessions after just one missed payment while others are more lenient. Regardless, when you’re defaulting on your loan, the contract you have states that the car can be taken from your possession.

However, you may not realize that even in these circumstances, you have the right to protest your repossession. It’s a stressful situation for any vehicle owner, one that is often embarrassing. Even still, you can stop the repossession by simply saying so and the repo man must obey the legal boundaries. If they do not follow the law, it is considered a breach of peace.

Actions Considered Breaching the Peace During Car Repossessions

The term “breach of peace” is important to understand as it protects your rights. When a breach of peace occurs, it involves repo agents using forceful or unlawful tactics during the repossession. They must conduct themselves peacefully throughout the process or they are breaching the peace.

Using physical force, threats, intimidation, or trespassing onto locked property are just a few examples. However, it is also a breach of peace if you catch the repo man in the act of recovering your car and ask them to stop.

Since many consumers are unaware of this, they often cow down to the hostile methods that repo men engage in out of fear. Knowing your rights can save you a great deal of stress and trouble down the road.

Protesting Your Repossession

While there are many other ways a repo man can breach the peace, if you protest or object to them taking your vehicle, they must stop. Failing to do so is a breach of peace on their part and you may be able to recover damages.

When you come out of your home and ask the repo man to stop or tell them that you do not consent, this signals your objection. If a repo man is following the law, they will immediately cease the process and let this matter be resolved in a civilized legal process.

In many cases though, repo men will continue on with their job with no regard for the laws. If you find yourself in this situation, you should immediately start recording video with your phone as evidence. Better yet, start the moment you encounter the repo man to object to your repossession.

Woman on cell phone. Image via flickr/user:Scott Ableman. (CCA-BY-ND-2.0). Not modified or changed.

Some repo men can get nasty with physical confrontations. They may cause property damage to your home or land, or even damage the vehicle. Even if they do take your vehicle, they are not allowed to take any of your personal items from it. There are very clear laws on this, and the best course of action will be securing legal representation. An attorney who specializes in consumer rights will be able to review your case and determine if a breach of peace was made.

When you protest a repossession, the repo agent must listen, otherwise it is a breach of peace. You have consumer protection rights that need to be protected here and deserve justice.

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