Abandoned Vehicles

Per Georgia law, a business removing an abandoned or unclaimed motor vehicle from public rights of way or private or public property must go through a process to ensure the rights of the vehicle owners, lienholders, and security interest holders are protected. A certificate of title cannot be obtained for an abandoned vehicle on the basis of a surety bond, nor can a title be issued on a vehicle that is not required to be titled in Georgia (including 1985 or older year models). 

HB 307 created the Abandoned Motor Vehicle Act (Act), which provides that only towing and storage firms are authorized to remove vehicles from public and private property at the request of law enforcement officers or private property owners. The Act, effective September 1, 2019, also provides that towing and storage firms, repair facilities, and salvage dealers (Authorized Businesses) may obtain liens on abandoned or unclaimed motor vehicles by following a detailed process of notification to all owners, lienholders, and security interest holders.  The Act provides the specifics at O.C.G.A. § 40-11-11 et seq. 

Towing and storage firms in Georgia are required by law to notify vehicle owners, lienholders, and security interest holders when a motor vehicle has been towed and impounded. All Authorized Businesses that want to foreclose on a lien allowed under the Act are also required by law to notify vehicle owners, lienholders, and security interest holders. Authorized Businesses may obtain contact information in person from the Georgia Department of Revenue’s Motor Vehicle Division or online through Auto Data Direct, the Department’s official designated online vendor. 

In-Person Requests. For in-person applications, complete and submit a Download this pdf file.Form MV-603 to your local county tag office or to the Motor Vehicle Division at 4125 Welcome All Road, Atlanta, Georgia 30349. There is a $2 research fee for the contact information. 

Online Requests. For online requests for contact information, use Auto Data Direct. If you obtain the necessary contact information from Auto Data Direct, you will not be required to submit the Form MV-603 to the local county tag office or to the Motor Vehicle Division. 

 

Visit the Council of Magistrate Court Judges for forms

Apply for a Title and Tag for an abandoned vehicle after a court order

All authorized businesses must remit proceeds of public sale to the Department of Revenue

 

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