Advice Please

Hi, my husband and I are at a loss and would appreciate any advice from those who may have encountered a similar situation with the City Impund. Please no judgements

We have a commercial semi truck that has been parked in private lot that recently got bought out. The company that bought it out gave notice to move it, and we made several attempts but could not get it started.

We called the City and were told that without proper City signage, they could not tow it but advised us to move it as soon as we could to avoid it being towed in the future. We decided to get it towed, but It was towed the next day by the City to the impound lot, yes our fault for not getting it out sooner, but we tried. When we went to retrieve it from the impound lot, they needed to verify the VIN, which may be located on the inside of the drivers door. That door is now jammed probably from the towing or something because my husband was able to open it days before it being towed. The impound called their Insurance guy to try to verify the VIN, but he advised us he is only able to verify the “public” VIN that “may” be located inside that door as the one on the outside is not readable. If it ends up not being inside that door, we would have to go through applying for a new VIN, which involves getting an out of province inspection which our truck would fail because it doesn’t currently meet the standards.

We sent out a locksmith to try to open that door in hopes of finding that VIN, but he couldn’t get the door open and said that we would need to send out a mechanic. The mechanics we called would need more than an hour to remove the door and the impound only allows a maximum of one hour for us to do this, if it is a slow time. This will all be very very costly to us, not to mention paying the daily impound fee that’s accumulated, plus getting it towed from there. We made the decision that all this cost and stress that it was causing us to get our truck back was not worth it and that we would leave it there and cut our losses.

Now we are told that this would be classified as vehicle abandonment and all the charges incurred would in the end be charged to us by the Government of Alberta. So we are stumped. We can’t remove the vehicle because they can’t verify it’s ours without being able to get the VIN, but yet they can charge us if we abandon it? Then they can verify it’s ours when it comes time to charging someone, but not when we want to pickup the truck? It all seems really contradicting and unfair. Is there another solution to this? In the end, we would like to leave the truck since we aren’t able to remove it from there, but not if we are going to end up paying more for that.


Any advice from similar situations would be appreciated as we don’t know what to do anymore 🙁



21 Responses

  1. Barry Ziober Barry Ziober says:

    The VIN should also be on the frame somewhere. Usually by the engine.

  2. Shawn Blair Shawn Blair says:

    Unfortunately it’s their job to fuck us over

  3. I would hope there would be some sort of exception made to these kinds of situations, but the government seems to be cooking up new ways to get money, so you may be screwed.

  4. Sharon Swan Sharon Swan says:

    can the towing company be held responsible for the door not opening now .. as you stated your husband was able to open the door before towing ..when you seen that you could not start the truck you should have called a tow truck right away to get him to tow it for you …. phone your city councilman and see if he can help you .. as the city said to tow as soon as you can and they got off the phone with you and probably immediately called a tow truck to go and pick it up …so not giving you fair chance to get it picked up .. but I would have got on the phone right after and had a tow truck go out there to get the truck that you had parked .. this way you could have said that you sent someone that same day but city towed it before your guy got there .. that is ignorant of the city .. I had a vehicle that ended up in the city impound yard and all I did was SHOW THE REGISTRATION AND INSURANCE and they gave me the keys no questions asked after I paid the fine for towing and storage fees … like they are costly ….hope this helps you …

  5. I would be demanding some serious and immediate explanations from my MLA as to why the government is making it so hard for me to correct the problem. I would demand that my government rep get on the phone and start making some calls. I would put everything in writing.

  6. Maja Black Maja Black says:

    The VIN is in several places, on the frame, the door, in the dashboard, there are several places…also when they class it as abandoned they can destroy the door anyway and prove it. Many years ago I collected on abandoned vehicle files in a collection agency. You will be charged the tow, 30 days impound,plus as many days until the next auction…the amount that is paid from the auction will be deducted, then the crown pays the province and this will become a federal debt.

  7. If it goes as abandoned it will go up for auction and what they get for it is put against the impound bill. Most times you won’t owe anything or very little.

    • Candice Ball Candice Ball says:

      What? I have NEVER had that happen, anytime I’ve abandoned a vehicle I had to pay for the abandonment fees in full and the charge for abandoning it

    • Maja Black Maja Black says:

      Candice Ball this is indeed accurate. I used to collect on them at a collection agency. The problem is at auction a $5000 car can go for $250

  8. Do you not have the VIN number on some old paperwork?? registration?? insurance?? or do they still need to physically see the number on the vehicle?

    • also I think you need to have valid insurance on the vehicle in order to get it out of the impound… I had to have proof of valid insurance to get my car out

  9. What kind of truck is it

  10. Report it stolen? It looks like ours but we cannot verify?

  11. You do not need to “apply” for a new VIN or get an OOP inspection. Call the manufacturer and request a new door VIN sticker. It is very common that these stickers deteriorate due to door opening and closing regularly. I deal with this on a regular basis in my job.

  12. wouldn’t the vin be on the registration ? maybe you kept a copy for your files? the only way you are going to get it is with proof.

  13. This story is so full of shit. Anyone who believes any of it is gullible or plain stupid.

    First off, you don’t have a VIN? Not anywhere? Not at the last place it was leased? Not in your paperwork?
    Not at a dealership where it was previously serviced under your name? Nothing anywhere? No bill of sale?

    Secondly, you sent out a locksmith and he could not gain entry?
    Any trucker with an IQ above 60 would be able to gain entry with minimal damage, so you are going to tell us that a trained locksmith with a plethora of entry instrument could not gain access from the sleeper door, side windows, blind spot window? No way to access? Knock out a damned window!

    Your story of also has holes in how the city dealt with you, what’s more believable is you knew about the city taking up this property for quite some time but decided to ignore any notices.


Join the Discussion!