Can a Car Be Towed for a Violation Committed by Someone Other Than the Owner?


Quick Answer

In some cities, a vehicle can be towed for a violation committed by someone other than the owner. An example is Portland, Oregon, where authorities can tow a car when the vehicle is stolen or is in possession of someone a law enforcement officer takes into custody, according to the city's Auditor's Office. In California, authorities can tow vehicles illegally parked, or suspected of criminal involvement, states Van Lingen Towing. Towing laws vary between states, notes Green Towing San Diego.

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Full Answer

Authorities may tow a stolen vehicle from private or public property and store it at the vehicle owner's expense, explains the Auditor's Office for the City of Portland. They may also tow a vehicle posing an immediate danger to public safety.

Under Arizona law, when a driver has committed certain offenses, such as driving with a revoked or suspended license, or under the influence of intoxicants, authorities can order towing of the vehicle immediately, according to Chandler Police Department in Chandler, Arizona. Reckless driving, speed racing, attempting to elude an officer, solicitation of prostitution and sale of illegal drugs are among the many offenses for which authorities can tow a vehicle without notice to the owner, states the Portland Auditor's Office.

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