How Does a Car Get Impounded by the Police?

by Julie Boehlke
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Reasons why a Car may get Impounded by the Police.

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There are several reasons why police may impound a car. Perhaps the car's driver has accumulated too many unpaid traffic tickets. If a driver gets pulled over upon suspicion of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the officer will order that the vehicle be impounded to the police lot. If a vehicle owner fails to make the scheduled payments, a repossession order will be placed. If the vehicle has been involved in a crime or an accident, police may impound it until a full investigation has taken place. If police impound a car, the only way to get it back is to pay the fines or, if necessary, meet certain requirements set forth by a judge.

How does a Car get Impounded by the Police?

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When a repossession order has been placed, a towing company subcontracted by the police department will follow through. Information is provided by either the police officer who made the police report, the financial institution that owns the vehicle or the court that holds the repossession order with the judge's signature. The towing company then takes possession of it. The repossessed vehicle is taken to the police impound lot and locked to prevent access by unauthorized users.

Retrieving a Car from the Police Impound Lot.

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In order to retrieve the vehicle, the vehicle owner will need to first meet certain requirements. Follow the instructions on the court order. If the driver is behind on payments, all arrearages, plus any late charges and towing fees, must be paid in advance and approved by the lender. In cases where the vehicle is severely damaged and needs repair work, communicating with the impound lot and the auto body shop is essential so that everything is done on a timely basis. In situations where foul play is concerned, all possession orders must be signed by a judge. Owners are charged for each day the car is stored at the impound lot, so act promptly.

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