Auto loans are the most common secured debt in the U.S. If a debtor defaults on an auto loan, the creditor can typically repossess the asset – the car – securing the loan. But if the asset is in a state of disrepair or otherwise diminished in value, the creditor cannot recoup the total balance owed by selling the car. So a deficiency balance is due from the debtor, with the balance becoming a receivable on the creditor’s books.

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