Code of Ordinances

of Union County, Illinois.

Ordinance Chapter: Article VII - Abandoned, Lost, Stolen or Unclaimed Vehicles

(A) Any per­son who vio­lates Sec­tion 24–7‑1 of this Arti­cle or who aids and abets in that violation:

  1. shall be sub­ject to a manda­to­ry fine of Two Hun­dred Dol­lars ($200.00); and
  2. shall be required by the court to make a dis­po­si­tion on the aban­doned or unclaimed vehi­cle and pay all tow­ing, stor­age, 
    and pro­cess­ing charges and col­lec­tion costs pur­suant to Sec­tion 24–7‑3(A) and (E).

(B) When a vehi­cle is aban­doned, it shall be pre­sumed that the last reg­is­tered own­er is respon­si­ble for the aban­don­ment and shall be liable for all tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges and col­lec­tion costs, less any amounts real­ized in the dis­pos­al of the vehi­cle.  The last reg­is­tered owner’s lia­bil­i­ty for stor­age fees may not exceed a max­i­mum of thir­ty (30) days’ stor­age fees.

The pre­sump­tion estab­lished under this para­graph may be rebutted by a show­ing that, pri­or to the time of the tow:

  1.  a report of vehi­cle theft was filed with respect to the vehi­cle; or
  2. the vehi­cle was sold or trans­ferred and the last reg­is­tered own­er pro­vides the tow­ing ser­vice with the cor­rect iden­ti­ty and address of the new own­er at the time of the sale or transfer.

If the pre­sump­tion estab­lished under this Sec­tion is rebutted, the per­son respon­si­ble for theft of the vehi­cle or to whom the vehi­cle was sold or trans­ferred is liable for all tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges and col­lec­tion costs.  (625 ILCS 5/4–214)

(A) A law enforce­ment offi­cer or agency, a depart­ment of munic­i­pal gov­ern­ment des­ig­nat­ed under 625 ILCS 5/4–212.1 or its offi­cers or employ­ees, or a tow­ing ser­vice own­er, oper­a­tor, or employ­ee shall not be held to answer or be liable for dam­ages in any action brought by the reg­is­tered own­er, for­mer reg­is­tered own­er, or his legal rep­re­sen­ta­tive, lien­hold­er or any oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled to the pos­ses­sion of a vehi­cle when the vehi­cle was processed and sold or dis­posed of as pro­vid­ed by this Article.

(B) A tow­ing ser­vice, and any of its offi­cers or employ­ees, that removes or tows a vehi­cle as a result of being direct­ed to do so by a law enforce­ment offi­cer or agency or a depart­ment of munic­i­pal gov­ern­ment or its offi­cers or employ­ees shall not be held to answer or be liable for injury to, loss of, or dam­ages to any real or per­son­al prop­er­ty that occurs in the course of the removal or tow­ing of a vehi­cle or its con­tents on a lim­it­ed access high­way in a des­ig­nat­ed Inci­dent Man­age­ment Pro­gram that uses fast lane clear­ance tech­niques as defined by the Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion.  (625 ILCS 5/4–213)

(A) When a vehi­cle locat­ed with­in the cor­po­rate lim­its is autho­rized to be towed away by a law enforce­ment agency hav­ing juris­dic­tion and dis­posed of as set forth in this Arti­cle, the pro­ceeds of the pub­lic sale or dis­po­si­tion after the deduc­tion of tow­ing, stor­age and pro­cess­ing charges shall be deposit­ed in the trea­sury of the County.

(B) The pro­vi­sions of this Sec­tion shall not apply to vehi­cles dis­posed of or sold at pub­lic sale under sub­sec­tion (k) of 625 ILCS 5/4–107 of the Illi­nois Vehi­cle Code.  (625 ILCS 5/4–211) 

When a vehi­cle in the cus­tody of the Coun­ty or law enforce­ment agency is reclaimed by the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­son, or when the vehi­cle is sold at pub­lic sale or oth­er­wise dis­posed of as pro­vid­ed in this Arti­cle, a report of the trans­ac­tion will be main­tained by that law enforce­ment agency for a peri­od of one (1) year from the date of the sale or dis­pos­al. (625 ILCS 5/4–210)

In an action to col­lect tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges that remain unpaid after dis­po­si­tion of a vehi­cle towed or relo­cat­ed under this Code, the tow­ing ser­vice may recov­er rea­son­able col­lec­tion costs.

Any haz­ardous dilap­i­dat­ed motor vehi­cle impound­ed pur­suant to the pro­vi­sions of this Arti­cle and 65 ILCS 5/11–40‑3.1, whether impound­ed at a pub­lic facil­i­ty or on the prop­er­ty of pri­vate tow­ing ser­vice, shall be kept in cus­tody for a peri­od of ten (10) days for the pur­pose of deter­min­ing the iden­ti­ty of the reg­is­tered own­er or lien­hold­er and con­tact­ing such own­er or lien­hold­er, if known, by reg­u­lar U.S. Mail.  At the expi­ra­tion of the ten (10) day peri­od, with­out ben­e­fit of dis­po­si­tion infor­ma­tion being received from the reg­is­tered own­er or lien­hold­er, the law enforce­ment agency hav­ing juris­dic­tion will autho­rize the dis­pos­al of the vehi­cle as junk.  (65 ILCS 5/4–209.1) 

(A) New Car. When the iden­ti­ty of the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er, or oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled per­sons of an aban­doned, lost, or unclaimed vehi­cle of sev­en (7) years of age or new­er can­not be deter­mined by any means pro­vid­ed for in this Arti­cle, the vehi­cle may be sold as pro­vid­ed for in Sec­tion 24–7‑8 with­out notice to any per­son whose iden­ti­ty can­not be determined.

(B) Old Car. When an aban­doned vehi­cle of more than sev­en (7) years of age is impound­ed as spec­i­fied by this Arti­cle, or when any such vehi­cle is towed at the request or with the con­sent of the own­er or oper­a­tor and is sub­se­quent­ly aban­doned, it will be kept in cus­tody or stor­age for a min­i­mum of ten (10) days for the pur­pose of deter­min­ing the iden­ti­ty of the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­sons and con­tact­ing the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­sons by the U.S. Mail, pub­lic ser­vice or in per­son for a deter­mi­na­tion of dis­po­si­tion; and an exam­i­na­tion of the State Police stolen vehi­cle files for theft and want­ed infor­ma­tion.  At the expi­ra­tion of the ten (10) dayperi­od, with­out the ben­e­fit of dis­po­si­tion infor­ma­tion being received from the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­sons, the vehi­cle may be dis­posed of in either of the fol­low­ing ways:

  1. The law enforce­ment agency hav­ing juris­dic­tion will autho­rize the dis­pos­al of the vehi­cle as junk or salvage.
  2. The tow­ing ser­vice may sell the vehi­cle in the man­ner pro­vid­ed in Sec­tion 24–7‑8 of this Arti­cle, pro­vid­ed that the para­graph shall not apply to vehi­cles towed by order or autho­riza­tion of a law enforce­ment agency.

(C) Antique Vehi­cle. A vehi­cle clas­si­fied as an antique vehi­cle, cus­tom vehi­cle, or street rod may, how­ev­er, be sold to a per­son desir­ing to restore it. (625 ILCS Sec. 5/4–209)

(A) When an aban­doned, lost, stolen or unclaimed vehi­cle sev­en (7) years of age or new­er remains unclaimed by the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­son for a peri­od of thir­ty (30) days after notice has been giv­en as pro­vid­ed in Sec­tions 24–7‑5 and 24–7‑6 of this Arti­cle, the law enforce­ment agency or tow­ing ser­vice hav­ing pos­ses­sion of the vehi­cle shall cause it to be sold at pub­lic auc­tion to a per­son licensed as an auto­mo­tive parts recy­cler, rebuilder or scrap proces­sor under Arti­cle 5 of Chap­ter 625 of the Illi­nois Com­piled Statutes or the tow­ing oper­a­tor which towed the vehi­cle.  Notice of the time and place of the sale shall be post­ed in a con­spic­u­ous place for at least ten (10) days pri­or to the sale on the premis­es where the vehi­cle has been impound­ed.  At least ten (10) days pri­or to the sale, the law enforce­ment agency where the vehi­cle is impound­ed, or the tow­ing ser­vice where the vehi­cle is impound­ed, shall cause a notice of the time and place of the sale to be sent by cer­ti­fied mail to the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­sons.  Notice as pro­vid­ed in Sec­tions 24–7‑5 and 24–7‑6 of this Arti­cle as pro­vid­ed in this Sec­tion shall state the time and place of sale and shall con­tain a com­plete descrip­tion of the vehi­cle to be sold and what steps must be tak­en by any legal­ly enti­tled per­sons to reclaim the vehicle.

(B) If an aban­doned, lost, stolen, or unclaimed vehi­cle dis­plays deal­er plates, notice under this Sec­tion and Sec­tion 24–7‑9 of this Code shall be sent to both the deal­er and the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled persons.

(C) In those instances where the cer­ti­fied noti­fi­ca­tion spec­i­fied in Sec­tion 24–7‑5 and 24–7‑6 of this Arti­cle has been returned by the postal author­i­ties to the law enforce­ment agency or tow­ing ser­vice, the send­ing of a sec­ond cer­ti­fied notice will not be required.  (625 ILCS 5/4–208)

(A) Any time before a vehi­cle is sold at pub­lic sale or dis­posed of as pro­vid­ed in Sec­tion 24–7‑8, the own­er, lien­hold­er or oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled to its pos­ses­sion may reclaim the vehi­cle by pre­sent­ing to the law enforce­ment agency hav­ing cus­tody of the vehi­cle proof of own­er­ship or proof of the right to pos­ses­sion of the vehicle.

(B) No vehi­cle shall be released to the own­er, lien­hold­er, or oth­er per­son under this Sec­tion until all tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges have been paid.  (625 ILCS 5/4–207)

When the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er or oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled to the pos­ses­sion of a vehi­cle can­not be iden­ti­fied from the reg­is­tra­tion files of this State or from the reg­is­tra­tion files of a for­eign state, if applic­a­ble, the law enforce­ment agency hav­ing cus­tody of the vehi­cle shall noti­fy the State Police, for the pur­pose of iden­ti­fy­ing the vehi­cle own­er or oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled to the pos­ses­sion of the vehi­cle.  The infor­ma­tion obtained by the State Police will be imme­di­ate­ly for­ward­ed to the law enforce­ment agency hav­ing cus­tody of the vehi­cle for noti­fi­ca­tion pur­pos­es as set forth in Sec­tion 24–7‑5 of this Code.  (625 ILCS 5/4–206)

(A) When a law enforce­ment agency autho­riz­ing the impound­ing of a vehi­cle does not know the iden­ti­ty of the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­son, that law enforce­ment agency will cause the vehi­cle reg­is­tra­tion records of the State of Illi­nois to be searched by the Sec­re­tary of State for the pur­pose of obtain­ing the required own­er­ship information.

(B) The law enforce­ment agency autho­riz­ing the impound­ing of a vehi­cle will cause the stolen motor vehi­cle files of the State Police to be searched by a direct­ed com­mu­ni­ca­tion to the State Police for stolen or want­ed infor­ma­tion on the vehi­cle.  When the State Police files are searched with neg­a­tive results, the infor­ma­tion con­tained in the Nation­al Crime Infor­ma­tion Cen­ter (NCIC) files will be searched by the State Police.  The infor­ma­tion deter­mined from these record search­es will be returned to the request­ing law enforce­ment agency for that agency’s use in send­ing a noti­fi­ca­tion by cer­ti­fied mail to the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er and oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­sons advis­ing where the vehi­cle is held, request­ing a dis­po­si­tion be made and set­ting forth pub­lic sale infor­ma­tion.  Noti­fi­ca­tion shall be sent no lat­er than ten (10) busi­ness days after the date the law enforce­ment agency impounds or autho­rizes the impound­ing of a vehi­cle, pro­vid­ed that if the law enforce­ment agency is unable to deter­mine the iden­ti­ty of the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er or oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled to own­er­ship of the impound­ed vehi­cle with­in a ten (10) busi­ness day peri­od after impound­ment, then noti­fi­ca­tion shall be sent no lat­er than two (2) days after the date the iden­ti­ty of the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er or oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled to own­er­ship of the impound­ed vehi­cle is deter­mined.  Excep­tions to a noti­fi­ca­tion by cer­ti­fied mail to the reg­is­tered own­er, lien­hold­er and oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­sons are set forth in 625 ILCS 5/4–209.

(C) When own­er­ship infor­ma­tion is need­ed for a tow­ing ser­vice to give noti­fi­ca­tion as required under this Code, the tow­ing ser­vice may cause the vehi­cle reg­is­tra­tion records of the State of Illi­nois to be searched by the Sec­re­tary of State.

The writ­ten request of a tow­ing ser­vice, in the form and con­tain­ing the infor­ma­tion pre­scribed by the Sec­re­tary of State by rule, may be trans­mit­ted to the Sec­re­tary of State in per­son, by U.S. Mail or oth­er deliv­ery ser­vice, by fac­sim­i­le trans­mis­sion, or by oth­er means the Sec­re­tary of State deems acceptable.

The Sec­re­tary of State shall pro­vide the required infor­ma­tion, or a state­ment that the infor­ma­tion was not found in the vehi­cle reg­is­tra­tion records of the State, by U.S. Mail or oth­er deliv­ery ser­vice, fac­sim­i­le trans­mis­sion, as request­ed by the tow­ing ser­vice, or by oth­er means accept­able to the Sec­re­tary of State.

(D) The Sec­re­tary of State may pre­scribe stan­dards and pro­ce­dures for sub­mis­sion of requests for record search­es and replies via com­put­er link.

(E) Fees for ser­vices pro­vid­ed under this Sec­tion shall be in amounts pre­scribed by the Sec­re­tary of State under Sec­tion 3–821.1 of the Illi­nois Munic­i­pal Code.  Pay­ment may be made by the tow­ing ser­vice using cash, any com­mon­ly accept­ed cred­it card, or any oth­er means of pay­ment deemed accept­able by the Sec­re­tary of State.  (625 ILCS 5/4–205)

When a vehi­cle is autho­rized to be towed away as pro­vid­ed in Sec­tion 24–7‑2 or 24–7‑3:

(A)  The autho­riza­tion, any hold order, and any release shall be in writ­ing, or con­firmed in writ­ing, with a copy giv­en to the tow­ing service.

(B) The police head­quar­ters or office of the law offi­cer autho­riz­ing the tow­ing shall keep and main­tain a record of the vehi­cle towed, list­ing the col­or, year of man­u­fac­ture, manufacturer’s trade name, manufacturer’s series name, body style, Vehi­cle Iden­ti­fi­ca­tion Num­ber, license plate year and num­ber and reg­is­tra­tion stick­er year and num­ber dis­played on the vehi­cle.  The record shall also include the date and hour of tow, loca­tion towed from, loca­tion towed to, rea­son for tow­ing and the name of the offi­cer autho­riz­ing the tow.

(C) The own­er, oper­a­tor, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­son shall be respon­si­ble to the tow­ing ser­vice for pay­ment of applic­a­ble removal, tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges and col­lec­tion costs asso­ci­at­ed with a vehi­cle towed or held under order or autho­riza­tion of the law enforce­ment agency.  If a vehi­cle towed or held under order or autho­riza­tion of a law enforce­ment agency is seized by the order­ing or autho­riz­ing agency or any oth­er law enforce­ment or gov­ern­men­tal agency and sold, any unpaid removal, tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges and col­lec­tion costs shall be paid to the tow­ing ser­vice from the pro­ceeds of the sale.  If applic­a­ble law pro­vides that the pro­ceeds are to be paid into the trea­sury of the appro­pri­ate civ­il juris­dic­tion, then any unpaid removal, tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges and col­lec­tion costs shall be paid to the tow­ing ser­vice from the trea­sury of the civ­il juris­dic­tion.  That pay­ment shall not, how­ev­er, exceed the amount of pro­ceeds from the sale, with the bal­ance to be paid by the own­er, oper­a­tor, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled person.

(D) Upon deliv­ery of a writ­ten release order to the tow­ing ser­vice, a vehi­cle sub­ject to a hold order shall be released to the own­er, oper­a­tor, or oth­er legal­ly enti­tled per­son upon proof of own­er­ship or oth­er enti­tle­ment and upon pay­ment of applic­a­ble removal, tow­ing, stor­age, and pro­cess­ing charges and col­lec­tion costs.  (625 ILCS 5/4–204)

(A) When a vehi­cle is aban­doned on a high­way in an urban dis­trict ten (10) hours or more, its removal by a tow­ing ser­vice may be autho­rized by a law enforce­ment agency hav­ing jurisdiction.

(B) When a vehi­cle is aban­doned or left unat­tend­ed on a high­way oth­er than a toll high­way, inter­state high­way, or express­way, out­side of an urban dis­trict for twen­­­ty-four (24) hours or more, its removal by a tow­ing ser­vice may be autho­rized by a law enforce­ment agency hav­ing jurisdiction.

(C) When an aban­doned, unat­tend­ed, wrecked, burned or par­tial­ly dis­man­tled vehi­cle is cre­at­ing a traf­fic haz­ard because of its posi­tion in rela­tion to the high­way or its phys­i­cal appear­ance is caus­ing the imped­ing of traf­fic, its imme­di­ate removal from the high­way or pri­vate prop­er­ty adja­cent to the high­way by a tow­ing ser­vice may be autho­rized by a law enforce­ment agency hav­ing jurisdiction.

When an aban­doned, lost, stolen or unclaimed vehi­cle comes into the tem­po­rary pos­ses­sion or cus­tody of a per­son in this Coun­ty, not the own­er of the vehi­cle, such per­son shall imme­di­ate­ly noti­fy the munic­i­pal police when the vehi­cle is with­in the cor­po­rate lim­its of any Coun­ty hav­ing a duly autho­rized police depart­ment, or the State Police or the coun­ty sher­iff when the vehi­cle is out­side the cor­po­rate lim­its of the Coun­ty.  Upon receipt of such noti­fi­ca­tion, the munic­i­pal police will autho­rize a tow­ing ser­vice to remove and take pos­ses­sion of the aban­doned, lost, stolen or unclaimed vehi­cle.  The tow­ing ser­vice will safe­ly keep the towed vehi­cle and its con­tents, main­tain a record of the tow as set forth in 625 ILCS 5/4–204 for law enforce­ment agen­cies, until the vehi­cle is claimed by the own­er or any oth­er per­son legal­ly enti­tled to pos­ses­sion there­of or until it is dis­posed of as pro­vid­ed in this Code.  (625 ILCS 5/4–202)

(A) The aban­don­ment of a vehi­cle or any part there­of on any high­way in this Coun­ty is unlaw­ful and sub­ject to penal­ties as set forth under Sec­tion 1–1‑20 of this Code.

(B) The aban­don­ment of a vehi­cle or any part there­of on pri­vate or pub­lic prop­er­ty, oth­er than a high­way, in view of the gen­er­al pub­lic, any­where in this Coun­ty is unlaw­ful except on prop­er­ty of the own­er or bailee of such aban­doned vehi­cle.  A vehi­cle or any part there­of so aban­doned on pri­vate prop­er­ty shall be autho­rized for removal, by the Coun­ty, after a wait­ing peri­od of sev­en (7) days or more, or may be removed imme­di­ate­ly if deter­mined to be a haz­ardous dilap­i­dat­ed motor vehi­cle under Sec­tion 5/11–40‑3.1 of the Illi­nois Munic­i­pal Code.  A vio­la­tion of sub­sec­tions (A) or (B) of this Sec­tion is sub­ject to penal­ties as set forth under Sec­tion 1–1‑20 of this Code.

(C) A tow­ing ser­vice may begin to process an unclaimed vehi­cle as aban­doned by request­ing a record search by the Sec­re­tary of State up to ten (10) days after the date of the tow, or any lat­er date accept­able to the Sec­re­tary of State.  This para­graph shall not apply to vehi­cles towed by order or autho­riza­tion of the Coun­ty or a law enforce­ment agency.  (625 ILCS 5/4–201)