My ex-romantic partner of over a year (back in 2021) faked their vehicle breaking down and said they needed a new one and was having trouble finding housing. They needed a vehicle for the nature of their work, so I co-signed a vehicle and an apartment lease because I cared about them deeply and didn’t want them to lose their job or move away. Several weeks after signing onto these things they left me and took the vehicle. Due to the nature of the co-signed loan and Indiana state law, we have 50/50 ownership of the vehicle, meaning I could not repossess it even if they failed to make payments on it. They knew they could just not make payments and I would be forced to, so they didn’t and I ended up spending thousands of dollars throughout the year for them to drive a vehicle. They did the same thing with housing, and were 11 months truant on rent. Between these two payments, I couldn’t afford to pay consistently. I managed to get the rent sorted out, but the late payments ruined my credit. As a result I don’t qualify for any sort of refinancing.
I had some savings at first to take the brunt of the financial damage, but eventually my old vehicle broke down and I needed a new one. After a year of the vehicle being in their possession, they contacted me and said they’d be willing to hand the vehicle over to me since they were having trouble making payments. By this point I had already bought another used vehicle. I tried to sell it to get extra money for car loan payments, but there was a critical issue with the engine which cost more to repair than I could resell the vehicle for. I also got the co-signed car returned to me with so much mileage and damage that I can’t sell or trade in the vehicle without owing a significant amount of money.
I eventually found out from another ex of theirs that they have a habit of doing this sort of thing: jumping from person to person and manipulating them into dependency and once they get a handful of financial favors they move on to the next person (not before cheating on them, of course). I also found out from their most recent ex that the entire time they had the vehicle and told me they needed it for work, they actually had a remote job and only worked a week or two out of every month because all of their other expenses were being paid for. So even that was a lie.
I have thought about taking them to court over this, but there isn’t any money to go after. I got duped, and went from having stellar credit and a positive net worth to terrible credit and a negative net worth in the span of a year. I work full time, but I only make $12/hr before taxes. The interest rate on the vehicle is killing me and preventing me from making meaningful dents in the balance. After my expenses related to rent, food, utilities and medication, I basically break even every month and can’t save, but even then I still have student loans which will eventually need to be paid off.
I am looking for help paying off my vehicle so I can actually save some money every month and stop living off scraps. I have an interview to go on food stamps in a couple of weeks, but even then it won’t be enough. If you read all of this, thank you for your time. Any amount of money is deeply appreciated. The image I posted is the current balance of the vehicle with a 14% interest rate.