Towed Vehicles 

Find a Towed Vehicle


A vehicle might be towed to either to an NYPD or NYC Sheriff/Marshal tow pound for several reasons:

  • You owe more than $350 or more in parking summons judgment debt
  • Double-parked car
  • Parked on a fire hydrant
  • Unpaid parking meter
  • Blocking an intersection or tunnel
  • Blocking a driveway
However, a vehicle may be towed by the police department for any parking violation anywhere in the city.

NYPD and NYC Sheriff/Marshal tow pounds are closed, and vehicles cannot be retrieved, on the following days:

  • New Year's Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day

Stopping a Tow in Progress

The owner of the vehicle being towed, or a person entitled to possession, can request the release of the vehicle before the tow truck is in motion.

In that event, the car must be unhooked and released and a binding agreement must be executed in which the owner consents to pay the vehicle release penalty.

The owner must present a current driver’s license and the registration, title, insurance identification, and car keys. If the vehicle is a rental, you must produce a rental agreement and car keys. If it is a company car, you must present your company identification.

To review the City of New York's parking summons penalty schedule, visit our Fines page.

Find a Towed Vehicle

To locate and retrieve your towed vehicle, use the Towed Vehicle Locator or contact 311.

The procedure to get your vehicle back depends on whether your vehicle was towed by:

  1. NYC Police Department because you were illegally parked; or by
  2. Marshal / Sheriff after booting because you owe more than $350 in outstanding judgment debt and the boot on your vehicle was not removed within 48 hours. For more information visit the booting page.

Redeem a Towed Vehicle

 

  • Locate the address of the NYPD Tow Pound in the borough where your vehicle was towed. If you also owe $101 or more in judgment debt, to get your vehicle back you will need to pay all your outstanding judgment debt as well as the tow fees and any other fees the tow company may charge while handling your vehicle.
    at the NYPD Tow Pound.
    • NYPD Tow Pounds accept major credit cards, cash, certified checks and money orders.
    • You cannot pay the ticket that resulted in the tow at the NYPD tow pound. You will need to resolve that ticket that caused the tow by either paying to or requesting a hearing from the Department of Finance online, by mail or in-person within 30 days of the date of the ticket.
Stopping a NYPD Tow in Progress
If you come across your illegally parked car in the progress of being towed by the NYPD, you can stop the tow by signing a “Field Release Agreement.” You must have a valid license as well as the registration or lease agreement for the car. By signing this agreement you are agreeing to pay the penalty for the parking violation that caused the tow, in addition to a release fee of $100-$200 (depending on size of vehicle) and any other fees the tow company may charge while handling your vehicle within 30 days.

 

 

  • You can pay your judgment debt either by calling the boot release line at 877-207-2134 or in person at a Finance Business Center.
  • If you do not have a valid credit card, you must pay your judgment debt and the fees at a Finance Business Center.
  • If you pay at a Finance Business Center, request a Vehicle Release Form. If you pay over the phone, you do not need a release form.
  • You will be informed where to go pick up your vehicle after you pay. Take the release form with you.
  • Finance Business Centers accept cash, money orders, certified checks, Visa, Discover, MasterCard, American Express and Mobile Wallet. Credit cards must be in the registered vehicle owner’s name.
  • If you do not redeem your vehicle within 24 hours after you pay, you may be charged additional storage fees.
Stopping a Judgment Tow In Progress

If you come across your car being put on a tow truck after being booted, you can stop the tow if you call the boot release line at 877-207-2134 immediately and pay your judgment debt and fees over the phone. You will not be charged the full tow fee but must pay a tow dispatch fee of $67.50. You may also be responsible for other fees the tow company may charge while handling your vehicle.

If you want to have a hearing you must visit a Finance Business Center. For more information click here.
Auctions
If you do not pick up your vehicle within 72 hours of the tow, the auction process will begin.  The vehicle may be auctioned off as soon as 10 days after being towed.

You can request a “Sale Hold” at any Finance Business Center.

Charges
 
Boot Fee:    $159.00
Sheriff/Marshal Execution fee: $80.00
Tow Fee (If applicable): $135.00
Tow Dispatch fee
(If applicable):
$67.50
Judgment Amount*  
Additional Fees*  
* Depending upon the amount owed. You may also be responsible for other fees the tow company may charge while handling your vehicle.

If you need a hearing to contest one or more of the outstanding parking tickets, you must ask for one at a Finance Business Center. You cannot have a hearing on tickets in judgment more than one year.

 

You will not be able to retrieve your vehicle if you do not have valid registration or insurance.

If you do not have a valid driver’s license you will not be able to retrieve your vehicle unless you have another driver with a valid license with you.

You must settle all Department of Motor Vehicle offenses, as well as parking ticket and camera violations that have gone into judgment before you can get your vehicle back.

You may need a registration clearance in order to retrieve your vehicle from the tow pound if your registration was suspended for having 5 summonses in judgment within a 12-month period and no other registration suspension on the vehicle exists. A registration clearance certifies that you have no parking debt and allows you to obtain or renew your vehicle registration at the DMV in person.

On the following days the NYPD tow pounds are closed and people will NOT be able to redeem vehicles:

  • New Years Day
  • Memorial Day
  • 4th of July
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day
For a list of NYPD Tow Pound locations and hours visit the NYPD Tow Pounds page.

For additional assistance locating a towed vehicle:
 
Contact 311
Call 212-NEW-YORK (Out-of-City)
TTY 212-639-9675 (Hearing Impaired)


Frequently Asked Questions

Vehicles that are not picked up are sold at auction.

Registrant’s with special legal circumstances may include:

  • A deceased registrant’s surviving spouse, heir or administrator
  • A registrant who filed for bankruptcy
  • A registrant whose car cannot be properly registered
Registrants who meet any of these circumstances must appear at the Parking Enforcement Unit located at 210 Joralemon Street, 9th Floor, Brooklyn, NY to speak with an attorney for redemption instructions particular to their circumstance.

Financial institutions holding a lien or title to a vehicle that has been booted and/or towed who are interested in recovering the booted/towed vehicle must prove their legal standing. To prove this, the lien holder should contact the Parking Enforcement Unit at 718-488-2976. (Have the plate number and vehicle description ready.)

You will be asked to send documentation with original copies overnight to:

Parking Enforcement Unit
Legal Affairs Division
NYC Department of Finance
210 Joralemon Street, 9th Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Once documentation is approved, a Notice to Release will be issued and emailed to the lien holder and their agent, as well as to the Marshal/Sheriff restraining the vehicle. Upon receipt, lien holder can then go to a Finance Business Center, pay the fees and then to the pound with the Notice to Release and payment receipt to pick up the vehicle. The lien holder is not responsible for the judgment debt.

If the towed vehicle is registered in the Finance Fleet or Rental Program, you must email the Fleet/Rental Assignment Unit.

You must have a current insurance card to get your vehicle back from any impound location. Your vehicle will not be released if you do not have valid insurance.

You can request a property release for personal property, like luggage or a baby car seat. However, tires, radios, batteries, and other parts of the vehicle may not be removed. Non-owners must bring a notarized letter signed by the vehicle owner allowing them to remove personal property. If a vehicle belongs to a firm or business, proof of employment must also be presented.

Yes, but they must have a notarized letter from the registered owner and the original title or registration (no copies).

You will need:

  1. A valid Driver's License
  2. The original vehicle registration stub (or the title)
  3. The vehicle's valid Insurance Card, and
  4. If you paid your judgment debt at a Finance Business Center, the Vehicle Release form.

Related Information

What are "Tickets in Judgment"?
Vehicle Auctions
Vehicle Booting