What is Considered “Breaching the Peace” During a Repossession?

Laws for repossessions prohibit repo men from committing what is known as a “breach of peace” during the process. While they vary from state to state, breaches of the peace are not permitted. 

The repossession company can’t violate these laws or any others during the auto repossession process. If they do, you may be entitled to damages. You may be behind on your car payments and expecting a repossession or perhaps it has already occurred. You should know more about your rights and what is deemed a breach of peace. 

Actions During Repossessions That Breach the Peace

There are many actions that can be deemed a “breach of the peace” during a repossession. For one, if the repo man causes someone injury during this process, it is a breach. They can’t take the vehicle over protest either, or use unlawful force in any way. This includes lifting an occupied vehicle. 

Repo men can’t use intimidation or threats to repossess a vehicle. They also may not cause property damage or damage to the car. 

What Actions Can You Take During Vehicle Repossession?

Most people don’t realize that they can stop a vehicle repossession in a peaceful way if they catch the repo man doing it. A simple protest of stating that they may not take the car will be considered an unequivocal protest, which by law, requires the repo man to stop. If he continues, he’s breaching the peace. 

If you’re in this situation, the best way to handle it is to take video of your encounter with the repo man. Even better, have another person in your household record what’s happening. In the event this turns loud and rowdy, write down the names of those who witnessed the incident. Some states require a police officer to attend a repossession, and if that is the requirement in your state, you will want to get their name and a copy of the report.

 You may find that after all is said and done, your vehicle was taken from a locked area of your property. Make sure you take a video of this area and capture broken, cut, or removed locks and chains or any damages to points of entry. 

What to Do If Breach of Peace Occurs During Your Vehicle Repo?

Even though the laws regarding repossessions are strict, repo men violate the rights of consumers. It can be incredibly frightening, especially when they use intimidation tactics or force to take back your vehicle. 

You may have directly encountered the repo man engaging in these behaviors, or you may have woken up in the morning to find your property damaged and your car missing from your garage. You should know that they can’t enter closed garages or get into a gated neighborhood without legal access. They also can’t take your personal belongings that are in the vehicle. 

It’s important to protect your rights when repo men cross the line. The next step is to contact an attorney specializing in breach of peace to have someone advocate on your behalf.