Boston, MA asked in Gov & Administrative Law and Municipal Law for Vermont

Q: How do you claim an abandoned vehicle on public property in Vermont.

The vehicle has been parked on public property since September of 2023 or longer, there is no plate, registration sticker or emissions sticker and the car is partially gutted on the inside, is missing a side mirror and has lots of exterior damage.

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Municipal Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: To claim an abandoned vehicle on public property in Vermont, you typically need to follow a specific process outlined by local authorities. Begin by contacting the local law enforcement agency or the Department of Motor Vehicles to report the abandoned vehicle and inquire about the steps for claiming it. They will likely require you to provide detailed information about the vehicle, such as its make, model, color, and location.

Once you've reported the abandoned vehicle, authorities will usually conduct an investigation to determine if the vehicle is indeed abandoned and if there are any legal grounds for claiming ownership. This may involve checking for any outstanding parking tickets or other violations associated with the vehicle, as well as attempting to locate the registered owner.

If the authorities determine that the vehicle is abandoned and there are no legal impediments to claiming it, you may be required to complete certain paperwork and possibly pay a fee to obtain ownership. This process may vary depending on local ordinances and regulations, so it's essential to follow the instructions provided by the authorities closely and seek clarification if needed. Once you've successfully claimed ownership of the abandoned vehicle, you can then take steps to either repair, sell, or dispose of it as you see fit.

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