Credit union settles lawsuit over military car repossessions

BAY CITY, Mich. (AP) – The federal government and a Michigan credit union have settled a lawsuit over the repossession of cars belonging to members of U.S. armed forces.

COPOCO Community Credit Union in Bay City has agreed to pay $10,000 to three people and $7,500 to a fourth person. Some money can be withheld for overdue payments before the repossessions.

Federal law protects service members while they’re on duty. The government says a court must review vehicle repossessions if a loan was obtained before military service. COPOCO didn’t obtain court orders before seizing the vehicles.

The U.S. Justice Department began investigating in 2015 when Alyssa Carriveau lost her car and daughter’s car seat in Lacey, Washington. She believed the car had been stolen. Her husband was away at training.

The settlement was announced Thursday.

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