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  1. #1

    Default Can You Withhold Somebody Else's Car Until They Show You a Valid Driver's License

    My question involves personal property located in the State of: GA

    I am holding a vehicle in my garage. It belongs to my niece. This fact I do not dispute. She was arrested for suspended license and the car was towed. I picked it up from impound. She has demanded the return of the car immediately. I have told her I will not release it until she can show me a valid drivers license. She claims she has to get some kind of breathalyzer in her car to get her license back and can't do it til she gets the car back. I suspect she will drive unlicensed again and I refuse to release it. She has threatened legal action. Could I face legal problems if I refuse to release the car? Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    Yes you can.

    I would suggest either require a third party with a valid license come with your niece to pick up the vehicle or you deliver it to her residence.

    If she insists on her picking it up I would tell her:

    sure just let me know when you are coming so I can have the police here to make sure you can legally drive it.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    She has asked me to deliver it to her house or have her son come pick it up. I donly agree to either. Her father is the previous owner and is apying for Medicaid to cover nursing home costs. I'm afraid it will interfere with him getting his Medicaid

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    18,340

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    Sorry, but nothing you have written gives you any right to keep her car.

    In fact, you have stolen it and are subject to criminal prosecution if she wants to report it as stolen.

    I suggest you give it back ASAP.

    If she wants her son to pick it up and he's licensed, let him pick it up.

    What she does after that is none of your business.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    Quote Quoting nathanhoward
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    She has asked me to deliver it to her house or have her son come pick it up. I donly agree to either. Her father is the previous owner and is apying for Medicaid to cover nursing home costs. I'm afraid it will interfere with him getting his Medicaid
    You don't agree? So what. Nobody put you in the position of being overlord here.

    If her father was the PREVIOUS owner, what happens to the car is totally irrelevant.

    Sounds like you are on a power trip and I suggest you get off the ride before that ride includes a trip to the police station for criminal conversion or theft.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    127

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    Agreed,unless you have a written agreement that she doesn't get the car till you are repaid the impound fees, the only limits you can impose is that of ensuring a licensed driver picks it up.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    1,991

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    Quote Quoting nathanhoward
    View Post
    I donly agree to either.
    it's not up to you, return her car or go to jail for auto theft. do you want a felony record?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,594

    Default Re: Can You Withhold Somebody Else's Car Until They Show You a Valid Driver's License

    Quote Quoting nathanhoward
    View Post
    Could I face legal problems if I refuse to release the car?
    To reinforce others' statements, YES!

    You do not appear to have any lawful right to hold onto the car. If the actual and registered owner of the car gives you permission to hold onto it, that's a different story. But, absent his permission for you to hold it, you put yourself at risk of being criminally prosecuted for withholding it.

    Release the car to the son, or, drive it to the daughter's house and drop it off. As you were told, what happens after that is out of your control and, really, none of your business. If her father doesn't have a problem being put at risk for her driving unlicensed, you can do nothing to protect him from the consequences of that decision.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Officially across the country from where I've been all my life
    Posts
    4,494

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    Quote Quoting puppybreath
    View Post
    the only limits you can impose is that of ensuring a licensed driver picks it up.
    Can you please provide me the statute that says that she has the right to withhold the car unless SHE can verify a licensed driver is picking it up? The GEORGIA law, please.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Holding a Vehicle Titled to My Niece

    (Translation: There is no such law.)

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