Olympia, WA asked in Civil Rights and Constitutional Law for Washington

Q: Police have my car for three years and haven’t notified me

a customer of mine was buying a car for me, but never made the payments turn to find out he was arrested and the car was seized over three years ago, and I been legal owner never notified by any sort or kind of communication via, but not limited to : written letter, Fax , phone , email, and in person ect.

What should I do?

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

A: If you are the legal owner of the car and it was seized by the police over three years ago without any notification, you should take the following steps:

1. Gather all documents proving your ownership of the vehicle, such as the title, registration, bill of sale, or any other relevant paperwork.

2. Contact the police department that seized the vehicle and inquire about its status. Be prepared to provide the vehicle identification number (VIN), your personal information, and proof of ownership.

3. If the police cannot provide a satisfactory explanation or resolution, consider filing a formal complaint with the department's internal affairs division or the appropriate oversight agency.

4. Consult with a lawyer specializing in civil rights or property law. They can help you understand your rights, explore legal options, and potentially file a lawsuit against the police department for violating your due process rights and property rights.

5. If the vehicle has already been sold or destroyed, you may need to seek compensation for the loss of your property through legal action.

6. Keep thorough records of all your communications and interactions with the police department and any other relevant parties.

It is crucial to act promptly, as there may be statutes of limitations or other time-sensitive factors that could affect your ability to recover your property or seek compensation.

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