Bill To Prevent Predatory Towing Advances

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Bill To Prevent Predatory Towing Advances

SANTA FE ― Monday, a bill to prevent predatory towing passed the House Judiciary Committee.

House Bill 491, sponsored by Rep. Natalie Figueroa (D-Albuquerque) and Rep. Christine Trujillo (D-Albuquerque) would add a new section to the Unfair Practices Act to make it an unfair or deceptive practice to tow or immobilize a vehicle from an apartment complex without giving 10 days’ written notice.

“This bill was inspired by the story of a Purple Heart veteran whose special license plate was stolen from his vehicle, and then his vehicle was towed away in the middle of the night without warning,” Rep. Natalie Figueroa said. “There are many reasons why a vehicle could be towed; but, there should always be sufficient warning so that New Mexicans have an opportunity to make necessary arrangements and avoid excessive fees.”

House Bill 491 would make it an unfair or deceptive trade practice to tow a vehicle in a multifamily housing parking facility without notice if the vehicle has an expired validating sticker on the license plate; has a missing license plate; occupies two parking spaces; is parked on the parking stripe or on grass, landscaping or a curb; is backed into a parking space; has a flat tire; or is mechanically unfit or unsafe to be operated or moved on the highway.

House Bill 491 now moves to the House Floor for consideration.