Real life MMD: Should I reclaim the car?

Former_MSE_Penelope Posts: 536 Forumite
edited 30 August 2011 at 8:46PM in MoneySaving polls
Money Moral Dilemma: Should I reclaim the car?

My daughter has three kids and is training to be a midwife. She needed a car to get to uni. Unlike my daughter, I had a good credit rating, so took out the loan at a low interest rate. She paid me back regularly until she had a nervous breakdown. Her husband now looks after the bills and payments have been sporadic - there's always an excuse. They still owe me £2,500.
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  • bogwart
    bogwart Posts: 117 Forumite
    My short answer would be: No. But you don't give us enough information about "a nervous breakdown". Is her prognosis able to indicate a recovery? If so you should attempt to work out a payment plan with her husband, but I imagine if they have three children and your daughter is not working money will be hard to come by.

    I suppose you could consider asking for the car back in an attempt to minimise your loss, but it seems a bit mean to me. She's your daughter - she's cost you a lot more than £2,500 to raise - and unless there are extenuating circumstances that you haven't mentioned then why not just swallow the loss? It's not like it's a life-changing sum of money and it could take some pressure off the family - including your grandchildren.
  • And? Where's the dilemma?

    Tell them you need the money, so their payments must be regular until the loan is paid off.

  • Are you in dire straits and desperately need the money? How can you even think to put additional stress your own daughter while she's having a nervous breakdown? Or on her husband who must be struggling to cope with his wife's illness and bringing up their children. I'm glad I come from a family where members help and support each other.
  • I guess you just have to put it down to experience. She's your daughter. You could ask that they still make regular payments, no matter how small (even £5 or £10), but it doesn't sound like you'll get the money back in full any time soon. If you're not in any financial hardship yourself then why make their situation worse by demanding it back.

    Perhaps one day when you are a pensioner they will look after you...
  • Tortle
    Tortle Posts: 24 Forumite
    edited 30 August 2011 at 11:56PM
    So your daughter was trying to better herself to give her & her family a better life. She met all payments to you until she tragically fell mentally ill & now you want our blessing to heap even more anguish on her. Your real moral question should have been "Am I fit to call myself a parent?". When you have children you love them unconditionally, you're prepared to give everything you have for them, your life if necessary & most certainly your money.
  • If you can afford it, then no. She is your daughter and is unwell, do you want to kick her when she's down? If you are struggling then you need to have a sit down with her and her husband and explain your situation and find a way of setting up a DirectDebit even for a smaller amount.
  • bouncydog1
    bouncydog1 Posts: 2,696
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Post
    Sorry - I can't believe you are asking the question. This is your daughter and her family, who by the sounds of it, are struggling to cope with her illness, one wage and looking after three children. On top of all of that she is probably worried about her job and career prospects. Unless there is something you haven't told us - e.g. she has got over her illness, is working full time and has help with childcare - then you should be trying to be more supportive. If they are no longer struggling then I would broach the subject of setting up regular repayments.
  • Can you spare the money and they desperately need the car (either for the kids or for work?), or can they totally spare the car and you need the money.

    Unfortunately when you lend to relatives you have to consider it more of a gift than a loan, but at the same time they have a responsibility to ensure you do not lose out through the loan.

    Follow your head, not your heart.
    What is this life if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare
  • Mumto2
    Mumto2 Posts: 1,348 Forumite
    I would talk to them & help work out what they can afford to pay each month, then get it on a standing order so there's no more missed payments.
    Now proud Mumto3 :j
  • You took out the loan therefore it is YOUR debt with just an informal arrangement with your daughter that she pays you so much each month. The question is : does she just have the use of the car or does it belong to her (and her husband) ? No doubt they regard the latter to be so, in which case you may encounter difficulty reclaiming the car. Even if you do get the car back you will receive no more payments and you will have made a loss on the whole deal. The only sound advice here is - never lend money to anybody - ever.
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