Towed Vehicles 

Find a Towed Vehicle (NYPD towed vehicles only)


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 (NYPD towed vehicles only) 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

Your booted vehicle may be towed if the DMV does not lift the suspension of your registration or if the license plate on the vehicle does not match the license plate listed on the registration. In that event, you should visit a Department of Finance business center (locations at www.nyc.gov/visitdof). You must bring the following documents:

  • A valid driver’s license

  • The original title for your vehicle (your name must appear on the front)

  • If you are not the titleholder, a notarized authorization from the titleholder, along with the titleholder’s driver’s license

    • If the car is financed: Contact the bank holding the title and request that they send you a certified copy of the title for purposes of retrieving the vehicle. An electronic title is acceptable and can be uploaded through our Customer Service Portal.

    • If the car is leased: Contact the bank holding title in their name. The bank must send you a notarized authorization along with a certified copy of the title. The authorization must acknowledge that the vehicle has no valid registration. The bank can also send the authorization and title through our Customer Service Portal.

    • If the vehicle has an unregistered plate: You must appear at a Department of Finance business center with a valid driver’s license and original title. (See above if your name is not on the front of the title.)

If all is in order, you will be able to retrieve your vehicle after you have paid the judgment debt and fees.


  • 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 646-517-1000 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 646-517-1000 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 (see Charges below). 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:    $136.00
Sheriff/Marshal Execution Fee: $80.00
Tow Fee (If applicable): $140.00/$180.00/$1500.00*
Tow Dispatch Fee
(If applicable):
$70.00/$90.00/$750.00*
Judgment Amount**
Additional Fees**
* Fee based on size and weight of vehicle
** 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



Related Information

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