Am I allowed to get my personal belongings out before the tow and storage bill is paid in full ?

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Am I allowed to get my personal belongings out before the tow and storage bill is paid in full ?

My vehicle was towed after an accident. Now the towing company won’t let me get my personal belongings out of my vehicle before paying the tow bill.

Asked on October 5, 2010 under Business Law, Kentucky

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

My gut instinct on this is "yes, of course you can."  The tow and the storage is for the vehicle, not for the personal belongings inside the vehicle.  Even if the storage facility auctioned off your vehicle for the storage fees - which they can do by the way after jumping through some hoops and getting a judgement, etc.,  so I would think about that - they would have no right to sell your personal belongings with the vehicle.  It is a "bailment" situation and doing so could be seen as "conversion" under the law.  So I would contact them and let them know that you are coming for your personal belongings and if they dent you access seek legal help.  Good luck.


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