Leasing a car -- what to do

I am the executor of my father-in-law’s will. He was halfway in on a lease from GMAC. There was no insurance on the lease, so when he died he left us with a $8,500 bill. GMAC and the dealership the car is leased from have been no help so far. I looked online and saw a place that will allow you to advertise the lease and someone will take it over, etc. Has anyone had experience with this? Is it worth looking into? I went over the options with GMAC, but all the options sound pretty fruitless, mostly that we have to pay it off. I leased a car years ago and I thought I remembered a clause that said if you can no longer pay the lease there was a penalty, but I didn’t remember that you had to pay off the entire amount. Thanks for any information!

I do not believe that having someone “take over” the lease is going to eliminate your liability if they don’t pay (check with your attorney). I think you are going to have to figure out the least expensive way to get out, either return the car with a payment, buy the car and resell it to someone else, or buy the car and keep it.

This is one of the many reasons never to lease a car.

check with your Attorney, but as long as you weren’t cosigned on the lease how can you be responsible? You may only have to simply return the vehicle, but check with a Attorney.
very sorry for your loss

I would assume that the estate is responsible, just like any other debt, but I agree that you need to talk to your attorney.

Every state has their own lease laws. You need to check your state’s laws. The best bet here is to bring all the information you have and seen an attorney. It should not cost much. Frankly I doubt if any state allows a claim against the family unless they signed the lease. However they may make a claim against the estate. Again that is a matter for your attorney.

Thanks to you all – I’m sitting down with my attorney next week and go over this. This is definitely different from state to state from what I can glean from the Web. but you’ve pointed me in the right direction. Thank you!

Its not a claim against the family but a claim against the estate of which the executor has the responsibility to settle all claims or notify the creditors that there are no assets and the person is deceased.

I find it hard to believe that there is no death clause in the lease though allowing for canceling the lease. There are also repurchasers of leases but you are still on the hook through the lease.


Your best bet might be to buy the vehicle from the leaseing company and then use it or sell it. What ever costs the estate the least amount of money. Your attorney will advise you…