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Possible Reasons Your Car Was Towed Without Your Consent

Did your car disappear from its parking space? If so, perhaps your vehicle was towed without your consent. You should first call your local police department and ask whether your car was actually towed. The towing company is supposed to notify the police about the tow. That way, you’ll know your vehicle wasn’t stolen.

However, there are some cases when the police will tow your car right in front of you. This could happen after they pull you over and discover something wrong with your driver’s license or vehicle documentation.

It is essential to learn about the common reasons why the police and other entities may have the legal right to have your car towed without your consent. Then you can do whatever you can to prevent it from happening in the future.

Below are the top 6 reasons why your car was towed without your consent.

Parked on Private Property

You cannot park your vehicle on someone else’s private property without their consent, and if you do, the property owner has the right to have your car towed without your permission. The worst part is that all the towing service costs get charged to the vehicle’s registered owner, which is you in this scenario.

A homeowner’s association manager may also tow your parked car if it violates the community’s rules on parking. For instance, if a town-home community doesn’t allow more than two parked cars per property, they would have the right to tow away any excess vehicles on its driveway or land.

1. Suspended License or No License

If the police catch you driving with a suspended driver’s license or no driver’s license at all, they will likely arrest you and tow your vehicle away without your consent. It is a crime to drive without a valid driver’s license. So, the police aren’t about to let you go away with a warning if you don’t have a valid license.

2. Expired Vehicle Tags

The police will pull you over if you have expired tags on your vehicle’s license plate. It indicates that your vehicle registration surpassed its expiration date. If you don’t renew your vehicle registration and you let it expire, the police have the right to tow your car away.

3. Unpaid Traffic Tickets

Do you have a glove compartment filled with unpaid parking tickets or speeding tickets? If so, you need to pay off the tickets or appeal them in court as soon as possible. Otherwise, the police may decide to tow your vehicle as collateral for all the unpaid traffic tickets that you let accumulate over time.

4. Illegal Parking

Public parking spaces have their own rules too. For instance, you cannot park in handicapped parking spaces without an official handicap tag or sticker showing in your vehicle. You also cannot park in front of a fire hydrant or any public space deemed a tow-away zone. Failure to comply with these local laws will result in your vehicle getting towed.

5. Unsafe Vehicle for Driving

Police may determine that your vehicle is unsafe to drive on public roads. If they see it has broken brake lights, missing side-view mirrors, and other forms of damage that make the vehicle dangerous for driving, they will pull you over immediately. Then your vehicle will get towed to any destination of your choice.

A traffic accident is another way a vehicle can be made unsafe to drive. When a vehicle suffers damage from an accident, it may have suffered mechanical or functional issues which limit your ability to operate it properly. That is why most vehicles get towed after they get into a traffic accident.


The most common reasons for having your car towed without your consent are illegal parking, illegal driving (suspended license, DUI, or vehicle that is unsafe to drive), or unpaid tickets. If you understand the local parking and property laws of your town or city, then you should be able to avoid getting into these circumstances. Just remember to keep your vehicle in drive-able condition and avoid parking in areas where you’re not allowed to park. And, of course, make sure you pay for your vehicle registration renewal, driver’s license renewal, and outstanding traffic tickets.

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