Palm Beach County regulates non-consent towing businesses in Palm Beach County by requiring them to be licensed and by setting maximum rates such businesses can charge for conducting non-consent tows.
A non-consent tow is defined as the recovery, tow, removal or storage of a vehicle or vessel without the authorization of the owner or authorized driver. There are two types of non-consent tows:
- Private Property Impounds - includes vehicles/vessels that may be illegally or inappropriately parked (i.e., against condominium rules etc.) on private property (or public/government property where a contract exists).
- Police Directed - includes vehicles/vessels incapacitated as a result of an accident or involved in a crime -- and the owner cannot or will not secure the services of his/her own towing service. The law enforcement agency involved, calls a towing company that is either under contract or on a rotation list.
The owner of an incapacitated vehicle/vessel has the right to contact his/her own towing company or service (i.e., AAA, etc.) if that company can respond and remove the vehicle in a timely manner. In such an event, the maximum county rates do not apply. The owner should communicate his/her intentions very clearly to the police officer(s) conducting the accident investigation.