What happens if I stop paying on a car loan and I've moved to Mexico?

I still owe on my car loan, but I recently moved to Mexico. I learned that once you're in Mexico, the lender can't repossess your vehicle. Will anything happen if I stop paying for my car loan?

Answer
“Sure, if you’re in Mexico, the lender certainly can’t repossess your car. But the collateral damage you’ll face if you ever return to the US could be catastrophic, and there are issues that may arise in the near future as well.
If you don’t pay your car loan, this will damage your credit extensively. If you are thinking of buying a home, you can probably forget about it for the next seven years.
And even if you keep paying for the registration and car insurance, the lender is still the lienholder, giving them legal rights to the car.
Furthermore, if your loan is written off by the lender, they’ll report it to the IRS as income at some point. That means you’re responsible for the income tax on that amount. So if you’re doing your taxes, don’t be shocked if you have a tax liability for thousands due to essentially stealing the car.
Lastly, it’s a question of ethics. You could escape debt by leaving the country, but think about your reputation. You wouldn’t steal from your mom, so why would you steal from someone who trusted you? Think long and hard about that.”
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Eric Schad
Answered on Apr 28, 2021
Eric Schad has been a freelance writer for nearly a decade, as well as an SEO specialist and editor for the past five years. Before getting behind the keyboard, he worked in the finance and music industries (the perfect combo). With a wide array of professional and personal experiences, he’s developed a knack for tone and branding across many different verticals. Away from the computer, Schad is a blues guitar shredder, crazed sports fan, and always down for a spontaneous trip anywhere around the globe.
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