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Quigley: Used car dealers may not be able to track and disable vehicles for …

February 25, 2015 - Author: Bradley

Been making your car payments on time? Good for you! You dont need to read any further.

But if youre finding those payments harder to make or you got your kid a cheap set of wheels from a street-corner used car dealer with the understanding Junior would make the payments, you might want to know about a proposed law in New Jersey that would prohibit the installation of payment assurance devices as a condition of securing motor vehicle funding.

Whats a payment assurance device? I didnt have any idea either until I checked out the internet and found more than I really cared to know about ways self-described sub-prime lenders make certain you continue paying for the car you lease or buy. Payment assurance devices seem to be growing in popularity, as more than two million vehicles across the country already are equipped with them.
They are small pieces of technology that allow the dealer to track and remotely disable your car if youre even one day late in making a payment. If you have one, you know its there. Most of them require the driver to enter a code provided by the dealer each month after making a payment. If payment hasnt been received or you forget to enter the code, the device will prevent you from starting the car.

Then the GPS part of the device allows the repo man to pick it up without confronting you.

Assemblymen Paul Moriarty and Angel Fuentes, both D-Camden, introduced A4033 to make the devices illegal in New Jersey. Wed be the second state to outlaw them. Only Wisconsin has banned them, but it wasnt done through legislation. Instead that states Department of Financial Institutions ruled that shutting down a car before a creditor has the right to actually physically repossess it is improper.

Several states briefly touched on the topic of payment assurance devices when they instituted Right to Cure laws allowing periods of time during which late payments can be made, with or without additional fees. Two states, Colorado and Connecticut, established guidelines for using the devices, thus effectively approving their use.

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