1. Notwithstanding any term or agreement to the contrary, the obligation of a consumer in a consumer credit transaction is enforceable by a creditor only after compliance with this section, except that in a consumer rental purchase agreement, default is governed by section 537.3618.
2. A creditor who believes in good faith that a consumer is in default may give the consumer written notice of the alleged default, and, if the consumer has a right to cure the default, shall give the consumer the notice of right to cure provided in section 537.5111 before commencing any legal action in any court on an obligation of the consumer and before repossessing collateral. However, this subsection and subsection 4 do not require a creditor to give notice of right to cure prior to the filing of a petition by a creditor seeking to enforce the consumer's obligation in which attachment under chapter 639 is sought upon any of the grounds specified in section 639.3, subsections 3 to 12.
When property is attached without the giving of notice of right to cure as permitted by this subsection, the creditor immediately shall give notice of the attachment to the consumer in the same manner as prescribed by the rules of civil procedure for service of an original notice. The notice shall advise the consumer that the attachment may be discharged by the filing of a bond as provided in sections 639.42 and 639.45, or by the filing of a motion with the court to discharge the attachment pursuant to section 639.63. The notice required by this paragraph is in lieu of the notice requirements of sections 639.31 and 639.33.
When a motion is filed to discharge an attachment made without the giving of a prior notice of right to cure, the court shall hear the motion within three days of the filing of the motion to discharge. If the court finds that the attachment should not have been issued or should not have been levied on all or any part of the property held, the attachment shall be discharged in whole or in part and property wrongfully attached shall be returned to the consumer.
If the court finds that there was no probable cause to believe the grounds upon which the attachment was issued, the consumer may be awarded damages plus reasonable attorney's fees to be determined by the court.
3. A consumer has a right to cure the default unless, in other than an insurance premium loan transaction, the creditor has given the consumer a proper notice of right to cure with respect to a prior default which occurred within three hundred sixty-five days of the present default, or the consumer has voluntarily surrendered possession of goods that are collateral and the creditor has accepted them in full satisfaction of any debt owing on the transaction in default.
4. If the consumer has a right to cure a default:
a. A creditor shall not accelerate the maturity of the unpaid balance of the obligation, demand or take possession of collateral, otherwise than by accepting a voluntary surrender of it, or otherwise attempt to enforce the obligation until twenty days after a proper notice of right to cure is given.
b. With respect to an insurance premium loan, a creditor shall not give notice of cancellation as provided in subsection 6 until thirteen days after a proper notice of right to cure is given.
c. Until the expiration of the minimum applicable period after the notice is given, the consumer may cure the default by tendering either the amount of all unpaid installments due at the time of the tender, without acceleration, plus any unpaid delinquency or deferral charges, or the amount stated in the notice of right to cure, whichever is less, or by tendering any performance necessary to cure any default other than nonpayment of amounts due, which is described in the notice of right to cure. The act of curing a default restores to the consumer the consumer's rights under the agreement as though no default had occurred, except as provided in subsection 3.
5. This section and the provisions on waiver, agreements to forego rights, and settlement of claims under section 537.1107 do not prohibit a consumer from voluntarily surrendering possession of goods which are collateral and do not prohibit the creditor from thereafter enforcing the creditor's security interest in the goods at any time after default.
6. If a default on an insurance premium loan is not cured, the lender may give notice of cancellation of each insurance policy or contract to be canceled. If given, the notice of cancellation shall be in writing and given to the insurer that issued the policy or contract and to the insured. The insurer, within two business days after receipt of the notice of cancellation together with a copy of the insurance premium loan agreement if not previously given to the insurer, shall give any notice of cancellation required by the policy or contract or by law and, within ten business days after the effective date of the cancellation, pay to the lender any premium unearned on the policy or contracts as of that effective date. Within ten business days after receipt of the unearned premium, the lender shall pay to the consumer indebted upon the insurance premium loan any excess of the unearned premium received over the amount owing by the consumer upon the insurance premium loan.
7. If a creditor in a consumer credit transaction commences an action for money judgment prior to giving the customer notice of right to cure as required by this section and fails to follow the procedures set out in this section, the court shall dismiss the action without prejudice. If the action was commenced as a small claim under chapter 631, the creditor shall not be found to be in violation of this section for purposes of section 537.5201 and the penalties provided in that section shall not apply if the creditor proves by a preponderance of the evidence that the creditor did not at the time of the violation have either knowledge or reason to know of the requirements of this section, and for this purpose the court shall consider all relevant evidence, including but not limited to the education or experience of the creditor with respect to the collection of debts arising from consumer credit transactions and any representation of the creditor by legal counsel and any legal advice rendered to the creditor with respect to the collection of debts arising from consumer credit transactions.
[C75, 77, 79, 81, § 537.5110; 82 Acts, ch 1025, § 1, 2]
87 Acts, ch 80, §49
Referred to in § 537.5201
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Last update: Thu Mar 18 15:00:31 CST 1999