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I have a real problem here, my friend at the time helped me Co-sign for a car loan. I want to take him off my title and loan...I just got the car 3 months ago. What do I do? He keeps threatening to take the car.

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    Why does he threaten to take the car? Have the relationship changed? Are you not making the payments and the lender is going after your friend for the missed payments? – Dilip Sarwate Sep 25 '16 at 16:20
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Co-signing the loan puts him at risk.

Having his name on the title puts you at risk.

To take him off the loan, you will need to refinance into a new loan based entirely on your own credit.

To take him off the title, you need his cooperation; he needs to agree to transfer his partial ownership of the car to you. Or you need to take him to court, but I'm not convinced you could win such a case.

See past answers regarding co-signing loans. This is a high-risk practice and should be avoided unless the co-signer is willing to risk losing their money. Doing this for a friend us a great way to destroy a friendship.

  • If he is on the title, you legally share ownership of the car with him. You need to ask a lawyer to find out whether that gives him the right to take it. If it does, it probably also gives you the right to take it back... but you really, really don't want to get into that kind of battle. – keshlam Sep 25 '16 at 4:58
  • What kind of lawyer would I call? A consumer lawyer? – Mary Janachovsky Sep 25 '16 at 5:04
  • If you needed a cosigner 3 months ago why do you think you can get your own loan now? – Loren Pechtel Sep 26 '16 at 18:30
  • The OP might be willing to pay a higher interest rate now that they understand that borrowing from a friend has its own risks. Or might not.... – keshlam Sep 26 '16 at 18:39
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To answer your question, just because he's a co-signor doesn't give him the legal right to just take the car from you as long as you can demonstrate you've been making the payments as agreed and are being responsible for the car and maintenance of the car.

Several people have noted that he is a co-owner with you, which is true, but he doesn't have more rights to the car than you. If it was agreed that his only role in the transaction was to be the guarantor of the debt then that's the only actionable claim he'd have -- that somehow you've breached the terms of the loan and he needs to secure possession of the vehicle to protect his legal and financial interests.

Several people have noted you'd need to refinance the loan in order to remove him from it, but as also noted, he's on the title, so he'd have to agree to sign away his ownership. On the flip side, why not offer to let him take over the payments and the vehicle and you can step clear of the whole mess? It might be the wiser choice in the end.

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    Unless the agreement was on paper -- which I doubt given the question -- it isn't clear who can or can't do what. Lawyer needed. – keshlam Sep 26 '16 at 2:14
  • Good point, Keshlam. I agree that a lawyer really would be the best option in this situation, and I would hope that one or both parties here have some kind of written agreement on this or it'll turn into a real mess. – Daniel Anderson Sep 26 '16 at 2:21
  • In my experience, people who ask this sort of question do so because they didn't have adequate legal advice when they established the co-signing/shared-title relationship. I could be wrong. – keshlam Sep 26 '16 at 18:42

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