If the vehicle was impounded as part of a criminal investigation, it can be held while the investigation is in progress. The department will be responsible for any storage fees after the first five business days. In most cases the vehicle are held for only a few days.
If the vehicle was impounded for another reason, the easiest way to get your vehicle out of impound is to correct the “situation” that created the need for towing the vehicle. For the most common reasons for vehicle impounds this would require the driver at the time of the impound to obtain a valid driver’s license, or the vehicle’s owner to obtain current registration for the vehicle, or the vehicle’s owner to pay off the outstanding parking tickets. Whatever the reason, once you have corrected the situation, the vehicle can be released. If the vehicle was impound due to a driver’s license issue that cannot be corrected, the vehicle will still be released after thirty (30) days.
The towing or storage fees paid to the tow companies will vary depending on the time it took to tow your vehicle, if any special equipment was needed, and how long the vehicle was in storage. The minimum tow and storage fees are based by the cost of doing business for the individual tow company. These fees are approved by the Oceanside office of the California Highway Patrol. The tow fees currently vary from $180.00 to $210.00, while the daily storage fees vary from $38.00 to $45.00.
When you come to the police department to obtain a release for a vehicle, the vehicle’s registered owner must be present. The registered owner will need to have their driver’s license with them. If they do not have one, then they will need to bring a licensed driver with them. Remember, if you live or work in California, the driver’s license must be issued by this state (active military is exempt).You will have to pay the “Vehicle Release Fee” to our Records Unit. Depending upon the reason for the impound, the fee varies between $100.00 and $165.00 for impounded vehicles. Once that fee is paid, you will have to pay the tow company for the towing and storage of your vehicle. Upon the payment of that bill, your vehicle will be released.