Abandoned vehicles and vessels are vehicles or vessels that are left unattended on public property. A person who leaves a vehicle or vessel on public property is guilty of a misdemeanor. Persons who receive notice of a local law enforcement officer that a vehicle or vessel has been left on public property are responsible for removing the vehicle or vessel. If a person receives notice and fails to remove the vehicle or vessel, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor. Liability for the cost of towing and removing abandoned vehicles or vessels is waived for any person who removes a vehicle or vessel without being paid.
The owner of a vehicle or vessel removed from public property with the owner's consent is responsible for removal of the vehicle or vessel. A law enforcement officer has the authority to remove a vehicle or vessel from public property if the vehicle or vessel is being used or stored in a dangerous or hazardous manner or if the vehicle or vessel is a fire hazard or a threat to the public safety. It is illegal to tamper with public works, to erect or maintain a structure or place a vehicle or vessel on public property, or to store a vehicle or vessel on public property without a permit. The driver and owner of a vehicle or vessel removed from public property must be present, and the vehicle or vessel must be removed within 24 hours of its removal.
Anyone who removes an abandoned or unclaimed vehicle or vessel from public property is responsible for disposition of the vehicle or vessel at the owner's expense. If the vehicle or vessel is a motor vehicle or vessel that is titled, a motor vehicle or vessel certificate of title must be obtained before the vehicle or vessel can be disposed of. The removal of a vehicle or vessel that is not titled in Georgia, or a vehicle or vessel that is not titled in a state or country that requires a title certificate, must be reported to the Georgia Department of Motor Vehicles.
You may find more information about the Abandoned Vehicles Act, Abandoned Vehicles Law and Abandoned Vehicles Towing and Storage Fees at the following website: http://www.governor.vermont.gov/files/documents/AbandonedVehiclesAct_1894.pdf .
The Abandoned Vehicle Hotline provides information to the public, law enforcement and towing agencies regarding abandoned vehicles. It also provides information to the DMV if the vehicle involved in an accident causing injury or death has been abandoned.
Abandoned motor vehicles are prohibited on private property without the consent of the property owner. The Act specifically provides that a property owner may deny consent for a vehicle to be removed from the property, and the vehicle may be arrested and impounded if the owner does not consent to its removal.
The Abandoned Motor Vehicle Act, and particularly the exemption for battery operated vehicles, raises serious questions about the legality of seizing vehicles like ATVs and snowmobiles. These vehicles are essential tools for much of the public and are used for their livelihood for a wide variety of reasons. They are also used for recreational purposes. The Act can be used to justify the seizure of vehicles and might lead to confiscation of property other than vehicles. 827ec27edc