Office of the Commissioner of Financial Regulation




Motor vehicles are one of the most common types of consumer goods repossessed. A creditor may repossess your vehicle if loan payments become delinquent, even after one missed payment. Failure to abide by other terms of the contract may also be grounds for repossession. Creditors may not use force in seizing the vehicle. The buyer will forfeit all rights under Maryland Law if the buyer is guilty of fraudulent conduct, intentionally and wrongfully concealing, removing, damaging or destroying the vehicle, or attempting to do so in order to prevent repossession.

Please review the full contract of the loan to determine under which Maryland law the loan was written. Typically, a creditor may:

  • Issue a Discretionary Notice at least 10 days prior to repossessing the vehicle to all signers on the loan by personal delivery or by certified or registered mail. You are not required to pay any repossession expenses if the creditor failed to issue you a Discretionary Notice.

  • Send a Required Notice to you by registered or certified mail within 5 days after the repossession of the vehicle.

  • Retain the repossessed vehicle for 15 days allowing you the opportunity to reinstate the contract.

If your complaint is against a car dealership, please contact the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) at 410-768-7541 to file a written complaint.

To file a complaint concerning repossession of your vehicle

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