Are you a tow operator in Texas and looking to stay on the good side of the law? Understanding the Texas towing laws can be quite beneficial in such circumstances. These laws are designed to protect you and vehicle owners. Here is a comprehensive guide to everything you should know about Texas towing laws.

Understanding Texas Towing Laws

The state of Texas towing laws are stipulated under the Texas Transportation Code Chapter 2308 and Occupations Code Chapter 2303. These laws outline the legal procedures for towing, penalties for violations, and the rights of vehicle owners. For instance, it is illegal for a tow truck operator to tow a vehicle without the owner’s consent unless it is parked illegally or abandoned. Violation of these laws can result in penalties or even jail time.

Breakdown and Violation Penalties

Texas laws on towing are specific about what warrants a legal tow. Towing in Texas is governed by strict guidelines, which dictate when and under what circumstances a vehicle can be towed. Some of the primary reasons for towing a vehicle in Texas include:

  • Parking violations: Vehicles parked illegally, such as in handicapped zones, no-parking areas, or in violation of meter-parking regulations, are subject to impoundment.
  • Abandoned vehicles: A vehicle deemed abandoned by the local authorities may be towed and impounded, provided specific criteria are met. For example, the absence of a valid registration or license plate.
  • Accident scenes: Vehicles involved in accidents that obstruct traffic or impede roadway access may be towed to facilitate traffic flow and ensure public safety.
  • Private property: Property owners have the right to authorize the removal of illegally parked vehicles on their property.

What Happens Once You Tow a Vehicle

Texas vehicle impound laws offer clear guidelines on what happens to a vehicle once an operator has towed it. Your tow truck company must report the tow to the police within two hours. The vehicle owner has the right to retrieve their car from the impound lot, but they will need to pay towing and storage fees. If the vehicle remains unclaimed after a certain period, it may be auctioned off to cover the costs.

It is very important to know that you cannot tow vehicles if you don’t have a TDLR towing license.

Understand Texas Towing Laws

Understanding Texas towing laws is essential for tow operators. Knowing the regulations governing vehicle impoundment and towing can help you stay updated on the legal requirements. Contact Texas State Approved Continuing Education for courses to help you understand Texas towing laws and licensure.