Tenants car left behind...PA

6 Replies

From Nolo: "Motor vehicles. Occasionally, a departing tenant will leave an inoperable or “junker” automobile in the parking lot or garage. Motor vehicles are often a special category of personal property to which state rules on abandoned property don’t apply. If the tenant has left a car or other vehicle behind, call the local police, giving the vehicle’s license plate number, make, and model, and indicate where it’s parked. The police will probably arrange to have it towed after determining that it is abandoned."

In your state, it appears you have to send notice to the tenant's last known address giving him 10 days to pick-up his property. If he responds, you have to hold onto it for another 30 days. 


I knew an owner who had the car towed to a mall and left - to get rid of it. A few days later, he receives a notice telling him he is being fined $100 a day for storage (the parking lot cameras recorded the towing company who then ratted him out).  What was a pain became an even bigger one.

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I call my local magistrate and get guidance. I have been able to call a local tow company after an eviction. I tell them the people were evicted and they will come get it.

In PA, you need to post a ‘no parking - current tenants only’ sign for I think 5 or 10 days. Then you can call a local tow company to tow the car.

Call one of the local tow companies and they will tell you the rules on that - they do that all the time and will do it at no cost to you.

Call the police and find out what the rules are. In my state, the police will tag a car on private property but towing is at owner's expense.

You always have the option of pushing the vehicle out onto the public street and then reporting it. If it's on public property, it's the responsibility of law enforcement. There's possibly a law against this so do it at your own risk.