My Mom Signed Our Truck Loan. What Happens if She Dies?

Dear Penny,

We have terrible credit. My mom financed our truck. My husband was supposed to be put on the loan as a co-signer but wasn’t.

My mom is older and now has serious health conditions. She is concerned about what happens to the truck if she passes. We can’t currently refinance the loan in our name. What would happen if she did pass? We have made all the payments . The registration and plates are in our name. Her name alone is on the loan.


Dear T.,

Practically speaking, it’s unlikely that the lender would repossess the truck as long as someone is making the payments. So if your mother dies with the loan outstanding, I’d continue making payments while her affairs are sorted out in probe.

Right now, your mother is legally on the hook for the loan even though you own the car and make the payments. Should she die with the loan outstanding, the only thing that would change is that her estate would be responsible for the loan. Probate laws vary by state, typically an estate’s executor is required to notify creditors of someone’s death so they can file a claim.

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