History: (US/Wisconsin) Chapter 13 filed in 2012, completed in December 2017. In March 2017 my car died and I was forced to purchase a car with the Chapter 13 still OPEN. One (1) company (located in TEXAS) agreed to finance me. Everything went well, Trustee approved purchase, and I set myself up to pay using finance co's online payment portal. For 9 months I paid religiously, early and above & beyond amount due. Went to make a payment and my account has been disabled.

Customer service tells me it's because of the Chapter 13. They knew about this when they agreed to finance, and it was only after 9 months of payments that they stripped me of access to my account. Now I am ONLY allowed to pay using direct pay through my bank. This is not that big of an issue, but they are also refusing to send me paper monthly statements, refusing to allow me to have any access to my account. My only way of monitoring is to call and ask if a payment has posted.

While the entire entity appears rather, shady, is it legal for them to refuse to send me monthly statements?

  • "legal" is more-or-less outside the scope of this site, though questions like this are sometimes considered on topic. At minimum, please mention your country and state/province in the tags or in the question. – Joe Feb 14 '18 at 17:44
  • Thank you. I edited to include (US) and the finance company is located in Texas. – Judy Feb 14 '18 at 17:52
  • Not sure we care where the loan company is. Where are you? Your location is what drives what laws they must follow in terms of things involving you. (Their location affects their own corporate regulations, and they likely also have to follow that state's laws in corresponding with you, but they must follow your state's laws either way.) – Joe Feb 14 '18 at 18:02
  • I am in Wisconsin – Judy Feb 14 '18 at 18:02

I'm not an expert in law, nor in Wisconsin law, so do not consider this legal advice.

However, the law that seems most relevant is the Truth in Lending act, also called Regulation Z, or 12 CFR Part 1026. Your auto loan is most likely a closed-ended loan, meaning you have a specific amount borrowed (at a single time), and a specified repayment schedule with payments that are identical in amount. (For example, you borrowed $1000, with 12 monthly payments of $100.)

The Truth in Lending act requires periodic statements for open-ended credit, meaning things like credit cards or home equity loans (see 1026.7). It does not require periodic statements for closed-ended credit (1026.17-1026.24). I cannot speak to why, and will not speculate here. Suffice it to say that it's not required in the act.

What would be required is that your lender proactively communicate any changes in your account that cause your monthly payment to change, such as if it is a variable rate loan and that variable rate increases (or decreases).

It is possible that either Wisconsin or Texas law might require your lender to supply periodic statements, or control how they may respond to your requests for statements. It is unlikely that any of the above laws have anything to do with online accounts, however. You may wish to contact your state's attorney general's office to find out whether you have resources available to help you, or your more local government body's resources (many cities and towns have people who will help you with things like this).

  • Much thanks for your comment! You've given me some direction here as to who to contact for help, and that's very much appreciated. – Judy Feb 14 '18 at 19:04

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