TexasJul 12th, 2010 | By Editorial Staff | Category: Features
Texas City to Begin Towing Vehicles with No Insurance
The Lufkin, Texas, City Council will begin enforcing a new ordinance that will allow vehicles of uninsured drivers to be towed beginning Monday, September 20, according to a news report. The ordinance was originally passed in July, and for the next week, officials will be spreading the word about the new law.
Motorists must be able to provide evidence of financial responsibility, which includes a copy of a motor vehicle liability insurance policy covering the vehicle, an insurance card, an insurance binder form covering the vehicle, an insurance surety bond certificate, a certificate of a deposit with the comptroller, a certificate of a deposit with the appropriate county judge or a copy of a certificate of self-insurance. If the driver claims to have financial responsibility but fails to provide proof, reasonable efforts will be made by the officer to verify responsibility for the driver, the report states.
The officer has the option to not tow the vehicle even if proof is not shown if mitigating circumstances exist, such as weather conditions, location and the ability of the driver to safely leave the location. An officer must make reasonable efforts to provide for the safety of the driver and any occupants, according to the report.
Towing of the vehicle does not prohibit the officer from also issuing a citation, and the officer will provide the driver with a Municipal Court Insurance Violation information sheet. The sheet explains that the driver may save $865 by taking the following steps: obtaining Liability Insurance for the vehicle or by bringing a copy of the insurance or policy to Lufkin Municipal Court and paying a $5 fee to the Court for them to verify the driver’s insurance, the report states.
If the court has verified insurance, the court fine will be reduced to $192. The original fine is $312. The court will then also grant a deferred disposition and the $750 state no-insurance surcharge will be waived.
A vehicle towed under this ordinance will be towed by the on-call tow truck from the normal rotation towing list and taken to the towing company storage facility.
The 2009 Legislature passed HB2571 to amend the Towing and Booting Act.
The bill requires TDLR’s Commission to adopt rules to establish the maximum amount that may be charged for private property tows in Texas. The bill also requires the Commission to specify the type and amount of any fee that may be charged in connection with a private property tow, other than the tow fee.
After months of review and input from the public and industry, the Towing and Booting Advisory Board made recommendations to TDLR’s Commission. On August 9, 2010, the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation established the statewide maximum amounts for private property tows and specified that a drop fee may also be charged.
The private property statewide maximum tow charges go into effect on September 1, 2010. A tow company performing private property tows may not charge more than the private property statewide maximum tow amounts on or after that date.
Please review these Frequently Asked Questions for further information: http://www.license.state.tx.us/towing/towingfaq.htm#ppmaximum
Phone: 1-800-803-9202 or 512-463-6599
SOURCE: Texas Towing and Storage Association
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