Owners of seized vehicles will be required to pay for the tow and daily impound fees
Owners of seized vehicles will be required to pay for the tow and daily impound fees

QCOSTARICA – In an effort to defray operational costs, the Policia de Transito (Traffic Police) says it will not start to apply a two charge to owners of seized vehicles.

In addition to the initial tow, vehicle owners will also be required to pay a impound fee.

The cost of the initial of tow of a seized vehicle is ¢5,347 colones for the first six kilometres (the average distance to the near impound yard) and ¢819 colones for each additional kilometre.

For example, a seized vehicle is 10 kilometres away from the nearest impound yard will be bill ¢8,623 (5.347 + ¢3.276).  The daily impound fee is ¢3,484 colones.

The registered owner of the vehicle will be responsible for the impound payment, in addition to the traffic fine, before the vehicle can be released.

Once the fees are paid, the vehicle must be removed immediately from the impound yard, or face additional fees.

The executive order (Decreto No 39098-MOPT) setting the rates were published on Wednesday in the official government publication, Diario Oficial La Gaceta.

Impounding a vehicle is a the discretion of the traffic official (transito), depending on the type of infraction and severity. Typically vehicles are impounded in cases of drunk driving (where the driver is taking into custody), not having the marchamo (circulation permit), riteve (vehicle inspection), vehicle registration is in question or driver without a license or as in the case of illegal taxis (porteadores).  In many cases the license plate is confiscated, required the registered owner of the plate to pay the fine before having it returned.


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