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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    3

    Default Storage Lien on Car I Lost Track of After the Garage Owner Died

    My question involves vehicle registration or title in the state of:California. I baught a classic car as a teen in 2001. In 2003 I let a friend take it to his shop out of town to help me restore it. After he took the car he was not reachable by phone and the shop where he had the car was not a operational business anymore. I thought I had lost my car forever. On 9/24/2013 I received a letter "notice of pending lien sale for vehicle valued $4000 or less (civil code 3072) the letter states that i am the registered owner and my car is going to be sold on 10/14/2013 if I don't pay the storage fee of $2100. As soon as I got the letter I called the automotive shop it's being held at and the guy says he was hired to fix the car and put about $7000 into restoring the car paid for by the owner back in 2009. The car was stored at the shop since then N said recently the owner died, so he is attempting to become the owner and if I want the car I have to pay $8,000 for storage. I then thanked him for his time and hung up. I need advice as soon as possible I am going to the DMV in one hour to retrieve the pink slip. mopremetl@yahoo.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,096

    Default Re: My Stolen Car is Being Held at Repair Shop Because the Guy That Thought Owned It

    Get the pink slip and call the police local to the repair shop.

    When did you report the car stolen?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: My Stolen Car is Being Held at Repair Shop Because the Guy That Thought Owned It

    Quote Quoting Supernova
    View Post
    I thought I had lost my car forever.
    What steps did you take to locate and recover the car?
    Quote Quoting Supernova
    On 9/24/2013 I received a letter "notice of pending lien sale for vehicle valued $4000 or less (civil code 3072) the letter states that i am the registered owner and my car is going to be sold on 10/14/2013 if I don't pay the storage fee of $2100.
    The letter should also describe your right to request a hearing in court. Did he use the standard form? That instruction and the declaration of opposition are included in the standard form.
    Quote Quoting Supernova
    As soon as I got the letter I called the automotive shop it's being held at and the guy says he was hired to fix the car and put about $7000 into restoring the car paid for by the owner back in 2009.
    You're the owner.

    When you asked for all paperwork from that transaction, what did you receive?
    Quote Quoting cyjeff
    View Post
    Get the pink slip and call the police local to the repair shop.
    cdwjava can correct me if I'w wrong, but it's difficult to believe that the police will have any interest in pursuing a 'theft' claim under these facts.
    Quote Quoting California Civil Code Section 3072
    (a) For vehicles with a value determined to be four thousand dollars ($4,000) or less, the lienholder shall apply to the department for the names and addresses of the registered and legal owners of record. The request shall include a description of the vehicle, including make, year, model, identification number, license number, and state of registration. If the vehicle identification number is not available, the Department of Motor Vehicles shall request an inspection of the vehicle by a peace officer, licensed vehicle verifier, or departmental employee before releasing the names and addresses of the registered and legal owners and interested parties.

    (b) The lienholder shall, immediately upon receipt of the names and addresses, send, by certified mail with return receipt requested or by United States Postal Service Certificate of Mailing, a completed Notice of Pending Lien Sale form, a blank Declaration of Opposition form, and a return envelope preaddressed to the department, to the registered owner and legal owner at their addresses of record with the department, and to any other person known to have an interest in the vehicle. The lienholder shall additionally send a copy of the completed Notice of Pending Lien Sale form to the department by certified mail on the same day that the other notices are mailed pursuant to this subdivision.

    (c) All notices to persons having an interest in the vehicle shall be signed under penalty of perjury and shall include all of the following information and statements:

    (1) A description of the vehicle, including make, year model, identification number, license number, and state of registration. For motorcycles, the engine number shall also be included.

    (2) The specific date, exact time, and place of sale, which shall be set not less than 31 days, but not more than 41 days, from the date of mailing.

    (3) The names and addresses of the registered and legal owners of the vehicle and any other person known to have an interest in the vehicle.

    (4) All of the following statements:

    (A) The amount of the lien and the facts concerning the claim which gives rise to the lien.

    (B) The person has a right to a hearing in court.

    (C) If a court hearing is desired, a Declaration of Opposition form, signed under penalty of perjury, shall be signed and returned to the department within 10 days of the date the Notice of Pending Lien Sale form was mailed.

    (D) If the Declaration of Opposition form is signed and returned, the lienholder shall be allowed to sell the vehicle only if he or she obtains a court judgment or if he or she obtains a subsequent release from the declarant or if the declarant cannot be served as described in subdivision (e).

    (E) If a court action is filed, the declarant shall be notified of the lawsuit at the address shown on the Declaration of Opposition form and may appear to contest the claim.

    (F) The person may be liable for court costs if a judgment is entered in favor of the lienholder.

    (d) If the department receives the completed Declaration of Opposition form within the time specified, the department shall notify the lienholder within 16 days that a lien sale shall not be conducted unless the lienholder files an action in court within 30 days of the notice and judgment is subsequently entered in favor of the lienholder or the declarant subsequently releases his or her interest in the vehicle. If a money judgment is entered in favor of the lienholder and the judgment is not paid within five days after becoming final, then the judgment may be enforced by lien sale proceedings conducted pursuant to subdivision (f).

    (e) Service on the declarant in person or by certified mail with return receipt requested, signed by the declarant or an authorized agent of the declarant at the address shown on the Declaration of Opposition form, shall be effective for the serving of process. If the lienholder has served the declarant by certified mail at the address shown on the Declaration of Opposition form and the mail has been returned unclaimed, or if the lienholder has attempted to effect service on the declarant in person with a marshal, sheriff, or licensed process server and the marshal, sheriff, or licensed process server has been unable to effect service on the declarant, the lienholder may proceed with the judicial proceeding or proceed with the lien sale without a judicial proceeding. The lienholder shall notify the Department of Motor Vehicles of the inability to effect service on the declarant and shall provide the Department of Motor Vehicles with a copy of the documents with which service on the declarant was attempted. Upon receipt of the notification of unsuccessful service, the Department of Motor Vehicles shall send authorization of the sale to the lienholder and shall send notification of the authorization to the declarant.

    (f) At least 10 consecutive days prior to and including the day of the sale, the lienholder shall post a Notice of Pending Lien Sale form in a conspicuous place on the premises of the business office of the lienholder and if the pending lien sale is scheduled to occur at a place other than the premises of the business office of the lienholder, at the site of the forthcoming sale. The Notice of Pending Lien Sale form shall state the specific date and exact time of the sale and description of the vehicle, including the make, year model, identification number, license number, and state of registration. For motorcycles, the engine number shall also be included. The notice of sale shall remain posted until the sale is completed.

    (g) Following the sale of a vehicle, the person who conducts the sale shall do both of the following:

    (1) Remove and destroy the vehicle's license plates.

    (2) Within five days of the sale, submit a completed "Notice of Release of Liability" form with the Department of Motor Vehicles.

    (h) The Department of Motor Vehicles shall retain all submitted forms described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (g) for two years.

    (i) No lien sale shall be undertaken pursuant to this section unless the vehicle has been available for inspection at a location easily accessible to the public at least one hour before the sale and is at the place of sale at the time and date specified on the notice of sale. Sealed bids shall not be accepted. The lienholder shall conduct the sale in a commercially reasonable manner. All lien sale documents required by the department shall be completed and delivered to the buyer immediately following the sale.

    (j) Any lien sale pursuant to this section shall be void if the lienholder does not comply with this chapter. Any lien for fees or storage charges for parking and storage of a motor vehicle shall be subject to Section 10652.5 of the Vehicle Code.
    If you have not waited too long to do so and you want to dispute the lien or the person's right to sell the vehicle, you had best file that declaration of opposition.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,096

    Default Re: My Stolen Car is Being Held at Repair Shop Because the Guy That Thought Owned It

    I was operating under the assumption that the car had been reported stolen.

    Of course, this also assumes that the OP did not make a claim on said theft to his insurance company. If he did, he no longer has any say in what happens to this car. he wouldn't own it...the insurance company would.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    OH10
    Posts
    17,019

    Default Re: Storage Lien on Car I Lost Track of After the Garage Owner Died

    I am operating under the assumption the car is worth quite a bit more than $8k after the restoration and this guy better jump on getting his car back, even if he just sells it for $20k on Ebay.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Storage Lien on Car I Lost Track of After the Garage Owner Died

    Quote Quoting Supernova
    View Post
    My question involves vehicle registration or title in the state of:California. I baught a classic car as a teen in 2001. In 2003 I let a friend take it to his shop out of town to help me restore it. After he took the car he was not reachable by phone and the shop where he had the car was not a operational business anymore. I thought I had lost my car forever. On 9/24/2013 I received a letter "notice of pending lien sale for vehicle valued $4000 or less (civil code 3072) the letter states that i am the registered owner and my car is going to be sold on 10/14/2013 if I don't pay the storage fee of $2100. As soon as I got the letter I called the automotive shop it's being held at and the guy says he was hired to fix the car and put about $7000 into restoring the car paid for by the owner back in 2009. The car was stored at the shop since then N said recently the owner died, so he is attempting to become the owner and if I want the car I have to pay $8,000 for storage. I then thanked him for his time and hung up. I need advice as soon as possible I am going to the DMV in one hour to retrieve the pink slip. mopremetl@yahoo.com
    Thanks for the replies you guys are great. So I got this letter a little late so i couldnt do the declaration of opposition because the letter was sent to my old address and my dad told me about it on friday instead of the monday it arrived(you got 10 days to get the letter post marked). Which really sucks. I went to the dmv in lincoln park and they were no help. So i went to the dmv in pasadena and they put me in the right direction n gave me the number to the lien sale unit 916-657-7617 there the lady told me get the title history and since i could no longer do the d of opp i should go to dmv and do a courtesy stop which blocks people from gaining the title of the car at the DMV and gives me 60 days with a chance to fight in small claims along with the current title history. She had me call 916-657-8098 then press zero to skip automated voice and go directly to Record & History that guy sent me to DMV.ca.gov and search INF space 70 (space as in space bar) and print the request and send it in. Which takes ***60** f'in days!! And I got two weeks till they sell it 10/14/2013. So Im going to pay for the title history and current history ($5 each)regardless. My cousin gave me advice and said to just pay for the storage fee which is on the paper i received $2160:because the guy was bullshitting when he said he was going to charge me $8,000. So i'm going to get a loan or credit card and drive 3 hours to attemp to retrieve it soon.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Yes I am doing everything I can to get that car back. Today I am sending out request for current registered owner documents from Sacramento and I am talking to auto detectives at the local police station.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Hey I got the letter too late to file the declaration of opposition. I think I'm going to pay for the storage 2100 or see what the police tell me today

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