? asked in Cars & TransportationBuying & Selling · 1 decade ago

Can my dad force me to pay him? Can he really have me arrested?

My dad had an old van and truck. Both of them had bad motors. I didn't have a car so he said that I could have either one. I didn't get either when he told me i could. A couple months later I went to my uncles house and took the truck. I sold the truck for parts for $1000. A few days ago he came to me and he was mad saying that he only told me I could get the van and not the truck and he wants his truck back. I explained to him what i did with the truck and told him there is no way i could get it back. So now he's saying that i have to pay him for the truck. He wants me to pay him $7000. He told me that he is getting legal documents stating that I have to pay him $200 every two weeks until he is paid back and if I miss a payment I will be arrested. Is this legal and can he force me to pay him?

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    He can't have you arrested or successfully sue you for the money if he really did tell you that you could have either the van or the truck. Still, since it is basically his word against yours he might be successful in suing you for the value of the truck if the judge believes him and not you. However, he can only get what the fair market value of the truck was. Considering you sold it for $1000, I doubt the truck was worth anything near $7000.

    He cannot get any "legal documents" stating you owe him anything without you getting notice and an opportunity to be heard. Check your mail carefully. If he really does take you to court and you don't show up then he could get a default judgment against you.

    It would be best for you to consult a real attorney, not Y!A. If you cannot afford one, call your local legal aid office. Any major metropolitan area will have one. It's a basically a non-profit legal organization that deals with civil matters for people who can't afford an attorney. They deal with stuff like this all the time.

  • 1 decade ago

    No he can't force you to pay him $7000 unless you willingly agree to pay him by signing a legally binding document (DO NOT sign whatever document he presents to you or you're bound by it). He CAN have you arrested for selling stolen property if the truck was titled in his name and he never signed that title over to the guy you "sold" the truck to.

    If the truck was titled in your dad's name, the only way you could sell it to the guy was to either forge your dad's name on the title (illegal) or sell it without a title (also illegal when it wasn't titled in your name).

    Your dad can technically go get his truck back if he is still the owner on the title....but the guy you sold the truck to is going to want his $1000 back and he's going to come looking for you to get it.... Your best bet might be to offer your dad the entire $1000 you made on the truck (or to pay him that $1000 over a short period of time if you already spent it) and see if that is a satisfactory compromise to him. I'd have a hard time telling anyone to agree to give anyone else $7K for a truck that was worth only $1K just to avoid getting the police involved, but that's ultimately your choice not mine.

    If you ask me your dad is trying to take advantage of your terrible judgement by trying to make 7 times what the truck was worth just to keep quiet about what you did. What he's doing is bordering awfully close to what the legal system considers extortion. Extortion is illegal too.

    Sounds like it would be in your best interests to seriously consider finding a lawyer no matter whether he gets the police involved or not at this point unless he agrees to accept the $1000 you got for his truck.

  • 1 decade ago

    How did you sell a truck that wasn't legally yours? Where was the title and who's name was on it.

    I think what you did basically was commit auto theft. You took something that was clearly not your property, you sold it illegally and now you refuse to pay for it. How could you do this without even a single phone call to your father asking him if it was OK. To me that indicates you knew you were wrong when you did it or you're too selfish to even care.

    Your dad is right. You owe him for the truck (at least the cash you got for it should be handed over to him). The only part that is untrue is he can not have you arrested unless he files charges against you for auto theft. He can't put you in jail for not paying him back. That is a civil matter not a criminal charge.

  • 1 decade ago

    How old are you?

    If I am understanding your story correctly, the only way you could have sold your dad's truck is if you forged his name on the title in order to sell it.

    That is called fraud, which is a felony in all states. You are lucky you aren't in jail.

    Getting the truck back for your Dad will be your cheapest solution.

    If you can't get it back, you owe him the market value of the truck you illegally sold. At this point, you may as well wait until after you lose in court.

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  • Derek
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    well unfortunatly you sold a vehicle without having ownership of it...therefore you do owe some sort of compensation.. the total of compensation however could be very different then what hes asking for. (he can charge you for theft or something similar) but the amount whould be a matter for the courts if it were to be pushed that far...or you and him could agree and a much more reasonable payment. Also saying that you will be arrested for missing a payment is false...maybe he could charge you for theft (which was the first issue) but not for actually missing a payment on a "contract" that he made up in his own head.

    Just remember that hes your dad...i would strongly recommend sittign doqwn and finding a much more mature and reasonable solution to this problem.

  • 1 decade ago

    The guy buying truck should have needed a title when buying. If your dads name is on title its his truck til he signs. You can't sell something that isn't yours.Smooth things out with him or he could have you arrested for stealing his truck. Cops could arrest you for steeling truck and transferring stolen property. Nobody likes felony charges and jail! Just buy a cheap vehicle next time.

  • 1 decade ago

    well you did sell his truck you should have asked him before you did that

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    There is no such thing as a debtor's prison in the USA, so he cannot have you arrested.

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