Can my apartment complex legally tow my car from the lot for having expired registration?

I was given no notice that my car would be towed, or that it had been towed. The leasing office told me that there was a sticker placed on my car, but I did not receive anything in writing or even a phone call. They tell me that this is within the terms of my lease, but I cannot believe that it can be legal. I had no idea that I was without transportation until I tried to leave for work. I almost reported the car stolen but was told that a tow truck had come through that day, which led me to visit the leasing office and inquire.

Asked on July 29, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Georgia

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It was definitely not good business practice of them to have the car towed but it may not have been illegal.  The complex is private property, correct?  They may have been within the law to have an unregistered car towed from their property.  As for the terms of the lease, read the lease as soon as you can.  A lease is a binding contract as between two parties.  If you agreed to the terms generally you are bound to abide by them and to suffer the repercussions of a breach (not abiding by them).  Terms are generally enforceable unless they are illegal or a court finds them "against public policy."  READ THE LEASE CAREFULLY.  Make sure that THEY followed the notice rules that they set forth in there and they are reasonable (stickering the car after someone has come home from work and having it towed the next day before they leave is not reasonable).  If you think that they have not followed their own procedures or that there procedures are unreasonable seek legal consultation in your area.  Good luck.


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