Massachusetts law about repossession

A compilation of laws, cases, and web sources on repossession law by the Trial Court Law Libraries.

Table of Contents

Massachusetts laws

Consumer credit

 MGL c.255, § 13I Default; curing default
 MGL c.255, § 13J Repossession

Motor vehicles

 MGL c.255B, § 20A Default; curing default
 MGL c.255B, § 20B Repossession
 MGL c.255B, § 20C Repossession notice to police
 MGL c.90D, § 17 Title transfer following repossession

Retail installment sales

 MGL c.255D, § 21 Default; curing default
 MGL c.255D, § 22 Repossession

Vessels (boats)

 MGL c.255, § 17 Liens on vessels; enforcement

Selected case law

Williams v. American Honda Finance Corporation, 479 Mass. 656 (2018) 
The fair market value of a repossessed car is not the fair market retail value. The pre- and post-sale notices "must describe the deficiency as the difference between the fair market value of the collateral and the debtor's outstanding balance." See U.S. First Circuit Opinion at Williams v. American Honda Finance Corporation, __ F.3d __ (October 2018)



Affidavit of Repossession, Registry of Motor Vehicles.

Web sources

My car was taken from me. What do I need to know?, Mass. Attorney General.
Learn your rights if your car is repossessed.

Vehicle Repossession, Federal Trade Commission. Not specific to Massachusetts, includes general information on what happens if your car is repossessed, including details such as what happens when a creditor sells your car, what happens to your personal property inside the car, and more.

Print sources

Collection Law (Mass. Practice v. 48-48A), by Jordan Shapiro, 2015 with supplement

Repossessions, 9th ed, by Carolyn L. Carter. National Consumer Law Center, 2017 with supplement.


Last updated: January 16, 2020