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Yesterday my car was nearly towed away and I ended up spending $61 to have the tow truck driver unhitch my car while it was still on private property.

Short story: Yesterday I parked my car in the guest parking spots for 10 minutes because the tow truck (I thought it was an auto club truck) was blocking my way to my house. I walked down the street to vote. When I got back, that tow truck driver had my car hitched and just started moving it. I stopped him and demanded he unhitch it. He absolutely refused to and insisted he was leaving with my car unless I fork up $61. After arguing I gave him the $61, and stated the vehicle code requires him to unhitch the car if I didn't pay (they could sue me for $61 if they want). I didn't know the exact vehicle code, but believe it's CVC 22658 (B) http://www.expertlaw.com/forums/showthread.php?t=138437 . He had me sign a form, which he gave me a copy. He didn't notice, but I signed it "F*** You" (not my name).

I'm trying to get the money back but the towing company is ignoring me. I hate to give up, but I may. Any OT legal advice?

Now that I think of it, I should have entered my car and locked the door. That would make a good YouTube video if they towed me while in my car to their lot.

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Small claim court. Did you took video or picture of the location and the "blocking". I can't understand how it block your way to your house and neither would a judge so you need to make the judge understand.

Dash Cam? ( I keep spreading the word that everyone needs one on FW).

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Next time lean on the horn until they get their pos wrecker out of your way

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scrouds said:   Next time lean on the horn until they get their pos wrecker out of your way
  and next time you need a wrecker in the middle of winter [or Summer, in FL], be thankful if they can rescue you in a reasonable time.

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mikebeets said:   
scrouds said:   Next time lean on the horn until they get their pos wrecker out of your way
  and next time you need a wrecker in the middle of winter [or Summer, in FL], be thankful if they can rescue you in a reasonable time.

  Keep the phone numbers of  some tow companies that mostly service commercial vehicles instead of retail customers.  They tend to respond sooner during busy periods than other tow companies do.  

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What is the $61 fee for? Extortion? Was it paid on credit card? If so, dispute the payment?
Although on private property, are there signs posted about towing away and that it is at the driver's expense to retrieve their vehicle once towed, etc?

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Serious answer: bitch and moan to your apartment complex. Make them pay you back. They are the ones that allow the tow companies to come on the property to fleece people. And they're getting good kickbacks to do it too.

You'll get no traction from the tow company.

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burgerwars said:   Yesterday I parked my car in the guest parking spots for 10 minutes because the tow truck (I thought it was an auto club truck) was blocking my way to my house. I walked down the street to vote. When I got back, that tow truck driver had my car hitched and just started moving it. 
  What do you mean by guest parking spots? You parked at a hotel? Then walked of the property? If so, you're SOL. 

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Get a bigger truck and wait for one of their tow trucks to be left unattended, go to tow away their truck and extort $122 out of them?

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thumpergeek said:   Get a bigger truck and wait for one of their tow trucks to be left unattended, go to tow away their truck and extort $122 out of them?
 and make sure you have all the towing equipment needed to do that job.

Equipment that will cost you more than $122 

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thumpergeek said:   Get a bigger truck and wait for one of their tow trucks to be left unattended, go to tow away their truck and pee on it?
 

  

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mikebeets said:   
thumpergeek said:   Get a bigger truck and wait for one of their tow trucks to be left unattended, go to tow away their truck and extort $122 out of them?
 and make sure you have all the towing equipment needed to do that job.

Equipment that will cost you more than $122 

  Sometimes, it's a matter of principle.

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atikovi said:   
burgerwars said:   Yesterday I parked my car in the guest parking spots for 10 minutes because the tow truck (I thought it was an auto club truck) was blocking my way to my house. I walked down the street to vote. When I got back, that tow truck driver had my car hitched and just started moving it. 
  What do you mean by guest parking spots? You parked at a hotel? Then walked of the property? If so, you're SOL. 

Yea. Where did you park, exactly?

If you pay for my CA bar exam fees, I'll represent you pro bono.

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I don't see the part of the statute that says the drop fee can't be demanded on the spot. I see a part that says the "regular charge," which is the regular towing charge, cannot be charged until the car is actually towed off the property. You could sue towing company in small claims court or if he violated some parts of the statute, it could be a misdemeanor and you could contact the police. However, I would just take it up with the landlord/HOA.

The statute requires the towing company to get specific written authorization before removing your vehicle. A general authorization is only good if your car is in a fire lane or near a fire hydrant.

"A towing company shall not remove or commence the removal of a vehicle from private property without first obtaining the written authorization from the property owner or lessee, including an association of a common interest development, or an employee or agent thereof, who shall be present at the time of removal and verify the alleged violation, except that presence and verification is not required if the person authorizing the tow is the property owner, or the owner's agent who is not a tow operator, of a residential rental property of 15 or fewer units that does not have an onsite owner, owner's agent or employee, and the tenant has verified the violation, requested the tow from that tenant's assigned parking space, and provided a signed request or electronic mail, or has called and provides a signed request or electronic mail within 24 hours, to the property owner or owner's agent, which the owner or agent shall provide to the towing company within 48 hours of authorizing the tow. The signed request or electronic mail shall contain the name and address of the tenant, and the date and time the tenant requested the tow. A towing company shall obtain, within 48 hours of receiving the written authorization to tow, a copy of a tenant request required pursuant to this subparagraph. For the purpose of this subparagraph, a person providing the written authorization who is required to be present on the private property at the time of the tow does not have to be physically present at the specified location of where the vehicle to be removed is located on the private property."

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