Secured party’s liability when taking possession after default
- legislative declaration
(a)The general assembly recognizes that, in the past, certain debtors may have been disadvantaged by the actions of repossessors and that such debtors were then unable to obtain just redress for their losses in the courts, especially in cases in which the creditor who initiated the action by employing or contracting with the repossessor was shielded from liability because the repossessor was categorized by the courts as an independent contractor. The general assembly wishes to ensure that the repossessor is bonded or that the secured party or assignee is held responsible at law as a principal under the general principles of agency law for the actions of a repossessor who is acting at the behest of the creditor in the event that no bond has been posted.
(b)A secured party or such party’s assignee who wishes to contract with a person to recover or take possession of collateral upon default, including a motor vehicle repossessed pursuant to section 42-6-146, C.R.S., shall contract to recover or take possession of collateral only with a person who is bonded for property damage to or conversion of such collateral in the amount of at least fifty thousand dollars. Such bond shall be filed with and drawn in favor of the attorney general of the state of Colorado for use of the people of the state of Colorado, and shall be revocable only with the written consent of the attorney general pursuant to rules promulgated by the office of the attorney general. The office of the attorney general may charge a fee to be paid by the person filing such bond in order to cover the direct and indirect costs incurred by such office in fulfilling its duties under the provisions of this section.
(c)A secured party or secured party’s assignee who employs or contracts with a person who has not complied with the requirements specified in subsection (b) of this section shall be liable as principal for the actions of any person the secured party or assignee employs or contracts with to recover or take possession of the collateral after default as provided in section 4-9-609 in the same manner as if such person were the agent of the secured party or assignee, whether or not such person has been or may be deemed to be acting as an independent contractor in law.
(d)A repossessor shall not engage in repossessing, recovering, or removing collateral or personal property on behalf of a secured creditor or assignee without first disclosing to such secured creditor or assignee whether such repossessor is bonded pursuant to this article. Any person who fails to disclose or misrepresents to a secured party such person’s bonded status or fails to file such bond with the attorney general shall be in violation of the “Colorado Consumer Protection Act”, article 1 of title 6, C.R.S., and shall be subject to remedies or penalties or both pursuant to said article.
(e)Any person who knowingly falsifies a repossessor bond application or misrepresents information contained therein commits a class 2 misdemeanor and shall be punished as provided in section 18-1.3-501.
(f)All moneys collected by the attorney general pursuant to this section shall be transmitted to the state treasurer, who shall credit the same to the general fund.
(g)Notwithstanding any provision by contract or common law, in exercising its rights after default, a secured party or lessor taking possession of a motor vehicle may not disable or render unusable any computer program or other similar device embedded in the motor vehicle if immediate injury to any person or property is a reasonably foreseeable consequence of such action. Any secured party or lessor who disables or renders unusable such a computer program or other similar device in such circumstances shall be liable in accordance with applicable rules of law to any person who sustains an injury to person or property as a reasonably foreseeable result of the secured party’s or lessor’s action.
Section 4-9-629 — Secured party’s liability when taking possession after default - legislative declaration - fund,
https://leg.colorado.gov/sites/default/files/images/olls/crs2023-title-04.pdf (accessed Oct. 20, 2023).