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I am disabled. My husband took care of all financial things until he deserted me and our children without warning in the middle of the night. I don't know where he is. He left me with a car that has out of state plates. I am not positive, but pretty sure that he stopped making payments on it maybe many years ago. I think he got some check from them, but I don't know if it was related to the car or not. I called the state the license plate is in and they said that the car was in both mine and my husband's name and that wells fargo is the lienholder. I don't know what to do. I just want to resolve this situation and make it right. I am terrified everytime I have to drive. I am in Georgia. What do I do?

 

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Are the out of state plates current? Is you husband in military ? Do you want to keep car or have bank take it? Did you have a joint checking and savings did he leave anything? Do you have joint credit cards? Have you called a divorce attorney see what your options are on deserted partner?   I would also reach out to your county social services for help.   So sorry this has happen to you as I have a disabled wife albeit our relationship is not the greatest,  I wouldn't leave unless it was agreed to do so and arrangements were set in order. What he did was cowardly in my opinion.  

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21 hours ago, BsharpC said:

I am disabled. My husband took care of all financial things until he deserted me and our children without warning in the middle of the night. I don't know where he is. He left me with a car that has out of state plates. I am not positive, but pretty sure that he stopped making payments on it maybe many years ago. I think he got some check from them, but I don't know if it was related to the car or not. I called the state the license plate is in and they said that the car was in both mine and my husband's name and that wells fargo is the lienholder. I don't know what to do. I just want to resolve this situation and make it right. I am terrified everytime I have to drive. I am in Georgia. What do I do?

 

The first thing you need to do is consult a good divorce attorney.  Most will do a first consult for free.  There are many options available to track his worthless a$$ down and make him pay temporary support as well as your legal fees as the separation and divorce is hashed out.  DO NOT wait for him to file in another state.  The attorney can advise you on the best way to handle the issue with the car with the least risk to you and your children.  You can use the site Lawyers to find a good competent attorney near you.  I  have used the site twice to hire lawyers (once in GA) and both times got excellent representation at a very reasonable price.  Best of luck and sorry this happened to you.

Edited to add:  if you have ANY joint bank accounts stop any payments coming in to you like SSDI immediately.  Open a separate account in your name only so that he cannot steal your money.

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The plates are not current. Not military. I don't think I can get it registered which is the problem. We had one checking account together, it was withdrawn, as soon as it was current I canceled my part as he took my economic payments. No joint credit cards. My main concern is the car. It is from 2006. I don't know what my options are but I have to fix it somehow. I can't deal with that stress. Contacted a consumer/bk attorney who said he didn't know what to do or who I could talk to for help which led me here. I really appreciate the supportive comments. How do I find out what would be involved in keeping the car and what happens if I need to give it back to the bank? I don't know anything about this. I know I need to contact a divorce attorney. Hard to know who is good. My son also has a car that is in my husband's name, but son paid for it. My husband stopped making insurance payments on it when he left so they canceled his registration too and so he can't register it either. So I have both car issues and trying to find solutions. I would really appreciate help.

 

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23 minutes ago, BsharpC said:

The plates are not current. Not military. I don't think I can get it registered which is the problem. We had one checking account together, it was withdrawn, as soon as it was current I canceled my part as he took my economic payments. No joint credit cards. My main concern is the car. It is from 2006. I don't know what my options are but I have to fix it somehow. I can't deal with that stress. Contacted a consumer/bk attorney who said he didn't know what to do or who I could talk to for help which led me here. I really appreciate the supportive comments. How do I find out what would be involved in keeping the car and what happens if I need to give it back to the bank? I don't know anything about this. I know I need to contact a divorce attorney. Hard to know who is good. My son also has a car that is in my husband's name, but son paid for it. My husband stopped making insurance payments on it when he left so they canceled his registration too and so he can't register it either. So I have both car issues and trying to find solutions. I would really appreciate help.

 

You REALLY need a lawyer.  This is very complicated.  Use the link I provided to find one or more to consult and get opinions.  A divorce attorney has likely seen this before and knows what to do.  The son's car is complicated.  Your car less so.  My guess is you would start with Well's Fargo.

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You need to talk to a divorce attorney before doing anything. This situation is too complex for consumer attorney. Make sure that you have your husband's SSN as you will need that to track that SOB down.

What I think will happen is that sooner or later, Wells Fargo is going to send a repo company looking for your car. If they visit before you are able to get an attorney, let them have the car. You can deal with the aftermath of that issue later then (especially if all you get is SSDI and government benefits). If your SSDI is deposited at Wells Fargo Bank, change that immediately so that there is no offset.

As for your son, unless that can be wrapped up with the divorce proceedings, he will probably have to get his own attorney and force the judge to put the car title in his name. He may be able to get current insurance and car registration on his car without the title. Again, we will need to talk to an attorney too.

In the mean time, DO NOT DRIVE THE CARS without valid insurance and registration. Those are actual crimes that can include jail time it you are caught.

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What do you mean they are crimes? Neither of us have any other car to drive and no other option. I have 3 kids and have to get medication or I will die, and go to doctors, etc. We have to drive places. So, you're saying a divorce attorney is the one who is going to fix all this? Do I call Wells Fargo? What do I tell them? Is this going to affect my credit? My husband ruined my credit for 26 years. It is finally clear. My mom died on top of everything else and I am under so much stress. What am I supposed to do to fix this quickly? I need specific advice and help on what to do. I obviously need quick solutions. Now I am more than terrified.

 

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1 hour ago, BsharpC said:

What do you mean they are crimes? Neither of us have any other car to drive and no other option. I have 3 kids and have to get medication or I will die, and go to doctors, etc. We have to drive places. So, you're saying a divorce attorney is the one who is going to fix all this? Do I call Wells Fargo? What do I tell them? Is this going to affect my credit? My husband ruined my credit for 26 years. It is finally clear. My mom died on top of everything else and I am under so much stress. What am I supposed to do to fix this quickly? I need specific advice and help on what to do. I obviously need quick solutions. Now I am more than terrified.

 

What he means is, driving without insurance is a crime and so is driving without valid registration. In other words, you're only going to make your situation worse if you are caught driving without either or both insurance and registration. Yes, you need a divorce attorney. One thing you definitely will want is for the attorney to specify in the appropriate section of the petition that governs property division is that you get that particular vehicle, or whichever vehicle you want to try to win in court. I would think it would be the same in GA as it would be in TX, in that so long as the judge signs the decree, you get whatever vehicle the papers say you get, regardless whose name the vehicle is registered in or whose name is on the note. If you have no idea where your estranged husband is, the short answer is that you won't have a quick divorce. One big issue will be serving him to let him know you are filing for divorce unless GA law is different from TX law in that respect. If its the same, you will have to exhaust most every other avenue of serving this husband whom you have no idea where he is, and then run an ad in the paper under public notice, stating that you are divorcing him and all this stuff. But again, GA could be different from Texas. I wouldn't know where to begin with registering the vehicle in the state you live in now. If you don't have the title and it wasn't registered in your name in the other state its registered in. I wouldn't think you need the title as you and/or your husband probably didn't have it to register it in the state it was last plated in to begin with but I am not certain.

 

To add, most states have requirements in terms of time in the state before one can file for divorce. Have you lived in the state you are currently in long enough to file for divorce? If you don't know where your husband disappeared to, the requirement in the state he went to could be more or less than the time required of residency where you are.

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2 hours ago, BsharpC said:

What do you mean they are crimes? Neither of us have any other car to drive and no other option. I have 3 kids and have to get medication or I will die, and go to doctors, etc. We have to drive places. So, you're saying a divorce attorney is the one who is going to fix all this? Do I call Wells Fargo? What do I tell them? Is this going to affect my credit? My husband ruined my credit for 26 years. It is finally clear. My mom died on top of everything else and I am under so much stress. What am I supposed to do to fix this quickly? I need specific advice and help on what to do. I obviously need quick solutions. Now I am more than terrified.

 

I lived in GA for YEARS.  Yes, it is illegal to drive a car without proper registration and insurance but they are not going to arrest you.  The major problem is if you are stopped for a traffic violation they will impound the car at that time.  Getting you and the children home would be your responsibility.  At that time if they think the children are at risk they could also get CPS involved.  The more likely scenario is you go out shopping and running errands and parking control scans the tag as they are patrolling.  Once it hits as no registration no insurance they impound the car.  You exit the store to discover car gone.  You will not be allowed to retrieve it without a registration and insurance and paying towing/storage fees which all totaled would amount to thousands of dollars for lapse/late fees at GA DMV, towing and storage plus new registration and first insurance payment.  Worse:  the lien holder would be notified and if they have a repo order you won't get it back at all the.  Wells Fargo will.  

Pharmacies and grocery stores deliver.  Start using it.  The small fee they charge is nothing compared to the thousands you could be hit with if you are caught driving uninsured/unregistered.

There is NO quick fix to this mess.  We all realize you are hoping that we can tell you to simply get these forms and file them with these agencies and it will all be straightened out.  We can't. This involves multiple agencies.  If you are struggling financially file for food stamps and public assistance on line immediately.  See if a neighbor can drive you to any appointments with those agencies and a lawyer.  Another option might be Legal Aid for the car issues.  They will not handle the divorce.  The stress must be enormous but you are going to have to pull it together and focus to clean this up and start over.  The sooner you do this and you NEED A LAWYER to do it the sooner you can rebuild you and your kids' lives.

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41 minutes ago, alwayswinning36 said:

I would think it would be the same in GA as it would be in TX, in that so long as the judge signs the decree, you get whatever vehicle the papers say you get, regardless whose name the vehicle is registered in or whose name is on the note.

The major issue isn't just that the car isn't registered or insured.  The major issue is he stopped making payments on it a LONG time ago so the odds are high that Wells Fargo the lien holder is looking to pick the car up.  The court cannot award her a car that has been repossessed.  

43 minutes ago, alwayswinning36 said:

One big issue will be serving him to let him know you are filing for divorce unless GA law is different from TX law in that respect.

Not a big issue in GA.  A good attorney can use alternative service methods easily but also likely has reliable methods to track this a$$hole down.

44 minutes ago, alwayswinning36 said:

If you don't have the title and it wasn't registered in your name in the other state its registered in. I wouldn't think you need the title as you and/or your husband probably didn't have it to register it in the state it was last plated in to begin with but I am not certain.

The vehicle has a lien on it therefore they would not have the title.  GA requires the registration (even if lapsed) from the former state, application for registration, signed form indicating who the lien holder is, smog check, proof of insurance, valid GA ID, DMV fees and Ad valorem taxes.  While there MIGHT be ways around the forms that would need to be signed and filed, the problem comes in to play is the form Form T-17 Statement of Title Held by Lienholder, Security Interest Holder, or Leasing Company.  Once this is filed the state of GA will contact the lien holder and if they have a repo order on it they will come seize the car so the OP would have spent all that money to have them take the car. 

50 minutes ago, alwayswinning36 said:

To add, most states have requirements in terms of time in the state before one can file for divorce. Have you lived in the state you are currently in long enough to file for divorce? If you don't know where your husband disappeared to, the requirement in the state he went to could be more or less than the time required of residency where you are.

The circumstances of the husband abandoning a disabled spouse and 3 minor children means the GA courts will allow her to file there on an emergency basis if they have not been in GA long.  She would be using the courts for survival at this point not forum shopping.

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What am I supposed to do to fix this quickly? I need specific advice and help on what to do. I obviously need quick solutions. Now I am more than terrified.

Go to craigslist or facebook market place and look for a cheap running car.  I bought my car which I been driving for 3 years for $350.   I sold the hubcaps for $100 on ebay. so it only cost met $250. I only had to change the oil twice and I put a $20 mp3 player in it as it had original tape deck.  I only drive about 2500 miles a year now that I work from home.  The car before that I bought on Ebaymotors for $300 dropped $500 fixing it and drove it for 5 years 80,000 miles was commuting then. Before that I bought a pickup truck at auction for $110 with fee.  Drove that four years 80 miles each way to work clutch went out sold it for $200. Don't pay any attention how car looks what matters are the mechanicals.    

Prices are high now for cars, but you can still find cheap ones like this one https://atlanta.craigslist.org/eat/cto/d/clarkston-toyota-corolla-gas-saver/7354543005.html

This is a good buy, https://atlanta.craigslist.org/atl/cto/d/smyrna-bulck/7346132199.html  it has the buick 3.8 L V6 known to go over 400,000 miles they get good gas mileage on highway close to 30mpg and 17 in city parts are cheap been up for 27 days so you can negotiate price down. 

 

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What do you mean they are crimes? Neither of us have any other car to drive and no other option. I have 3 kids and have to get medication or I will die, and go to doctors, etc. We have to drive places. So, you're saying a divorce attorney is the one who is going to fix all this? Do I call Wells Fargo? What do I tell them? Is this going to affect my credit? My husband ruined my credit for 26 years. It is finally clear. My mom died on top of everything else and I am under so much stress. What am I supposed to do to fix this quickly? I need specific advice and help on what to do. I obviously need quick solutions. Now I am more than terrified.

 

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41 minutes ago, BsharpC said:

What do you mean they are crimes?

In EVERY state including GA it is ILLEGAL to drive without insurance.  The penalty in GA is fines up to $1000 and possible jail.  It is a criminal conviction.  If you are stopped and do not have insurance and are charged and convicted you will end up with a criminal record.  The penalty for driving without a valid registration on the vehicle is $1000 fine and up to 12 months in jail.  Both convictions are misdemeanors.  ALL of that is based on your getting pulled over because the tag triggers the pull for being invalid or you are stopped for a moving violation.  If you are involved in an accident the criminal charges could potentially escalate to felonies.

41 minutes ago, BsharpC said:

Neither of us have any other car to drive and no other option.

The law does not have an exception for this.  Have the pharmacy and grocery store deliver your stuff.  Get a neighbor to drive you.  Take an UBER or LYFT.  If you continue to drive the consequences will be lifelong.  

41 minutes ago, BsharpC said:

So, you're saying a divorce attorney is the one who is going to fix all this?

YES.

41 minutes ago, BsharpC said:

Do I call Wells Fargo? What do I tell them? Is this going to affect my credit?

Get a lawyer FIRST.  Let them guide you on who to call and when.  Your credit is the least of your worries right now.

41 minutes ago, BsharpC said:

What am I supposed to do to fix this quickly?  I need specific advice and help on what to do. I obviously need quick solutions. 

ONE MORE TIME:  There is NO QUICK FIX TO THIS.  You keep repeating this as though the answers are going to change.  The answers have been the same from all of us:  GET A LAWYER.  This is way too complicated and really not a credit issue as much as family and criminal law.  This is beyond our scope and you need to HIRE A LAWYER.  Repeating the same pleas for a quick fix isn't going to change your situation.  You either start calling lawyers or Legal Aid or nothing is going to change.

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Back in the mid 1980s I was in a situation where I had to quickly get medicine for a sick loved one.  I drove an unregistered, unlicensed car, and got in an accident. 
 

I was extremely lucky. 
 

1. The cops decided to be nice and not mention the accident on the ticket, which made the change much less serious  

2.  I was in NYC.  That was a civil, rather than criminal, charge. 
 

3. There was no proof that the accident was my fault, although in retrospect I was distracted and it probably was my fault.  So I avoided a law suit from the other car.  
 

4. Nobody was injured.  Otherwise I would have gone to jail.  
 

5. No kids in either car.  
 

6.  The judge was nice and gave me the lowest penalty.  I still lost my license for a year, and had to pay a big amount to get it back a year later.  
 

7. I was in a place where losing my car and license wasn’t that big a problem. 
 

If I hadn’t been so lucky, I would have a criminal record.  My current job would be impossible to get with a record.  
 

For the OP, what would happen if you needed to go to the drug store and had a kid in the car with you and got in an accident with the kid in the car?   
 

That could easily be a felony conviction, jail and /or prison time, and loss of custody of any children. 
 

These days meds can be delivered. Don’t take the risk.  

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On 7/31/2021 at 5:33 PM, BsharpC said:

What do you mean they are crimes? Neither of us have any other car to drive and no other option. I have 3 kids and have to get medication or I will die, and go to doctors, etc. We have to drive places. So, you're saying a divorce attorney is the one who is going to fix all this? Do I call Wells Fargo? What do I tell them? Is this going to affect my credit? My husband ruined my credit for 26 years. It is finally clear. My mom died on top of everything else and I am under so much stress. What am I supposed to do to fix this quickly? I need specific advice and help on what to do. I obviously need quick solutions. Now I am more than terrified.

 

Yes, driving a vehicle without valid registration and/or without insurance is illegal, especially without insurance. Now most states make a first offense a fine and license loss but that is not what you need right now. UBER/Lyft and home delivery will be much cheaper than the fine/license loss/possible jail time. Not only that but if you get into an accident, you will really be in trouble. Besides criminal penalties, you will also probably be sued with the other driver or insurance company if you are at fault (and in some states, you are automatically at fault if you are driving an uninsured/unregistered vehicle as you should have never been there in the first place). Many states allow for creditors to take away your drivers license until you pay off the debt which you cannot do with your income situation. Trust me, you do not want to drive those cars until things are settled.

Now you mentioned that you have a car and your son has a car. I would suggest that since the son's car is paid for, that you and your son work on getting valid insurance and plates on that case. It will probably be cheaper. Your son may not be happy but right now, he has to do what is best for the family. As for the car with the lien on it, just keep it on the property. Either Wells Fargo will come and get it or the attorney will call Wells Fargo and tell them go go get it. There is no way you are keeping that car with your income situation.

Also, if you need assistance, you will need your husband's SSN. Social Services will want that to hunt him down to make him pay child support (and you get assistance for your children, they will go to the ends of the earth to hunt him down).

Finally, you need a lawyer ASAP. There are no simple quick fixes to this issue and this is way more than what an internet group can handle legally. However, a lawyer will tell you the same thing I did when it comes to the cars. Do not drive them until they are legally insured and registered.

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Also, if you're disabled and low income, social services may provide you with transportation to and from medical appts, etc.

They do so for a friend of mine here (Virginia).  My son is on Medicaid due to a disability (severe mental illness).  I take him to his doctor's appts, but if I couldn't, social services would take him and I think his Medicaid has a transportation provision as well.

United Way and other charities sometimes offer services like that as well for families in need. 

The nice thing about United Way (and I am far from a United Way fan) is that they have a central number you can call to explain the situation, then they can put you in touch with multiple agencies under their umbrella.

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