Ever Been Towed? Demand Regulation of the Towing Industry

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Towing companies are abusing the industry by illegally, and sometimes, improperly towing vehicles without proper authority, licensing, or insurance to do so. 

Believe it or not? Florida is one of these states that does not regulate towing.  The only towing companies that are regulated in FL are Repo tows.  Although there are statutes in place to protect its citizens from non-repo, illegal and improper towing, it’s NOT ENFORCED or REGULATED by any authoritative agency in the entire state.

If you’ve ever been towed before, you probably can relate to having a heart attack when you didn’t find your vehicle parked where you left it last. Maybe there were no signs present that it was a tow away zone, or the company damaged your vehicle or maybe demanded cash payment and heavy storage fees. This is illegal and improper towing.

Guess what? My Tractor trailer was stolen by Budget Towing & Transport LLC located in Haines City, Polk County. They say it’s a heavy towing company, but they’re not skilled in towing tractor trailers. They refused to give me my vehicles back within the statutory hour and they advertise as being a 24hr business, they demanded cash payment, they parked me on a public street and forced me to pay for storage fees, they refused to produce a license tax license because they didn’t have one to do business in Osceola county where I was towed from, they refused to produce a contract to tow me from the property, they failed to put up tow away zone signs with their name on it at the curbside entrances, they towed me in the daytime and said I was towed for overnight parking, they towed me 18 plus miles away which is outside of the statutory 10mi radius, they didn’t know you had to drop my driveshaft first, they dragged my truck backwards before doing so, they didn’t know where my transmission or transmission air tank was located and I had to show them and tell them it needs to have air in it first after you tow tractors, they illegally entered my vehicle, they improperly towed me causing $7400 in transmission damage, I was forced to pay $1240 impound and storage fees.  Part of that was for the mechanic to put my truck back together, which is illegal to make me pay for. They failed to give me a detailed receipt for the exact amount I paid and refused to give me the name of the authorizing person who asked for me to be towed.  They forced payment before I could inspect my vehicles. I incurred $600 for another tow co to take me to the dealership to repair my truck and had to pay $180 to store my trailer and I have not worked or earned a copper penny for weeks.

I read the statute for private towing which is a civil statute. However, subsections, if violated, as in my case, are criminal. The police department and the Sheriff’s Dept failed to protect me when they closed my report before forwarding it to a detective because no agency regulates towing companies in FL and they keep insisting this is a civil matter. The local authorities are giving these thieves a pass to steal vehicles and turning a blind eye to the law that is supposed to protect its citizens. 

I urge you to sign this petition demanding change to hold the towing industry accountable and be governed by a state agency.  

Should you ever be towed in the future, before you pay for the retrieval of your vehicle, investigate the statute governing towing.  You may end up not having to pay, and the towing company, may end up having to pay you if a change is finally made to regulate the towing industry. 

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