Legal Question in Credit and Debt Law in California


I have not made 3 pmts. on a commercial truck and traile and I'm being threatened that they going to report it stolen and going to file felony charges and going to be arrested onthe road and going to jail, can they do that???.

They did not tell me that, they told that to the person who answer the phone, can they disclose that info. to other people???????? other than my husband and I.?????

Asked on 9/12/08, 8:03 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

David Gibbs The Gibbs Law Firm, APC

Re: debt

The fact that the loan is on a commercial vehicle, even though it sounds like you and your wife took out the loan, probably remove it from the protections given to consumer credit transactions. Those types of protections would include making it a violation of the law for them to communicate details of your account to a third-party, making threats, etc...

As far as having made the threat to report the truck stolen, and to have you arrested, there are a couple of issues here. First, the truck cannot be considered stolen unless and until they take steps to repossess the truck and you fail to return it. Second, in California it is illegal to threaten criminal prosecution in an effort to get something you want (money, etc...). It falls along the lines of blackmail. That being said, being in the right on this issue isn't going to help save the truck. You need to contact the lender, communicate with them and work something out. Alternatively, if you are just not in a position to do so, then contact the lender and arrange a voluntary surrender of the truck. You cannot keep the truck and not pay them, so something has to be done to resolve that situation. You can use the violation described above as leverage, but its not going to solve your problem.

*Due to the limitations of the LawGuru Forums, The Gibbs Law Firm, APC's (the "Firm") participation in responding to questions posted herein does not constitute legal advice, nor legal representation of the person or entity posting a question. No Attorney/Client relationship is or shall be construed to be created hereby. The information provided is general and requires that the poster obtain specific legal advice from an attorney. The poster shall not rely upon the information provided herein as legal advice nor as the basis for making any decisions of legal consequence.

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Answered on 9/15/08, 1:15 pm

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