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Old 05-03-2011, 06:50 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, Texas
3,320 posts, read 3,284,150 times
Reputation: 2163

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So here's the story. My college bro bought 2 cars in Katy that were abandoned 8 years ago. Homeowner just up and left, went bonkers apparently. HOA hired a private eye to track him down, they tracked him to Dallas, then he dropped off the radar & they gave up.

Anyways, the story is with the cars. The guy who bought the house 2 weeks ago decided to sell them on eBay. However, according to Texas state law, you're supposed to call the cops first who then do an auction on the abandoned vehicles?

So the guy did something illegal by putting them on eBay?

Can anyone clarify the situation for me? What should my friend and I do in order for him to come away with 2 cars in good shape on the cheap?
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:17 PM
 
1,735 posts, read 2,546,795 times
Reputation: 737
I'm not sure from your post exactly who owns the cars, and on whose property they are located, but here is the procedure, as I understand it:

If the vehicle is left on private property for more than 48 hours without consent of the property owner, they can be considered abandoned. If you know who the owner is, and are able to locate & contact that person, ask them to remove the vehicles or transfer the title to you.

If he refuses to do either, or you cannot locate the owner, you will have to call the police, and have them impound the vehicles. The police will have to serve the owner of the vehicle with notice to claim the vehicles from impound by a certain date, and pay towing/impound/storage fees. If the vehicles have not been claimed by this date, they will be subject to auction by police.

At this point, if you still want the vehicles, you may attend the auction, and hope you are the high bidder!
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:34 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, Texas
3,320 posts, read 3,284,150 times
Reputation: 2163
The cars are in a garage of a home. The home was abandoned by the original owner 8 years ago. The HOA auctioned it off. My friend is currently dealing with the guy who bought it at auction, who's selling off the possessions, which have been sitting for 8 years.

I am guessing the new guy did the wrong thing by failing to contact the police. Sigh. What a headache for my friend.

edit: Also, how do you know this information, ged_782? Just curious about credentials or whatever.
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:58 PM
 
1,735 posts, read 2,546,795 times
Reputation: 737
This is about the most concise summary I can find, that doesn't get into a bunch of legalease.
How to Obtain Possession of an Abandoned Vehicle in Texas | eHow.com
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Old 05-03-2011, 08:31 PM
 
Location: San Antonio/Houston
21,644 posts, read 23,899,117 times
Reputation: 52062
More law:
Answers.com - What do you do when you have an abandoned vehicle on your property and you want to obtain the title
How to Get a Title to an Abandoned Vehicle - wikiHow

more specific:
Abandoned Vehicle in Texas at DMV.org: The TX DMV Made Simple
Texas Transportation Code - Chapter 683 Abandoned Motor Vehicles - Texas Attorney Resources - Texas Laws
Texas Transportation Code - Section 683.014. Auction Or Use Of Abandoned Items; Waiver Of Rights - Texas Attorney Resources - Texas Laws
Abandoned Vehicle Law & Legal Definition

and forms:
Vehicle Titles and Registration Forms
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Old 05-03-2011, 10:52 PM
 
95 posts, read 112,774 times
Reputation: 79
Your friend bought 2 untitled vehicles. Now all you need to do is jump thru the hoops of obtaining the titles. I wouldn't worry about the abandoned part.
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Old 05-04-2011, 09:00 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, Texas
674 posts, read 666,124 times
Reputation: 427
To obtain a title from an abandoned vehicle, you need to put a storage lein on the vehicle, notify the owner of the car of the fees and after 90 days of no response, go to apply for new title from abandoned vehicle storage lein. then and only then can you sell the vehicle.
If you purchased the vehicles on ebay without a title then you are totally out of luck.. You cannot apply for a title of a vehicle without the proper legal transfer...
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:55 PM
 
Location: Darlington, SC
2,463 posts, read 3,609,358 times
Reputation: 2199
Weird.. I was watching Storage Wars the other day.. They had a unit that had a Jaguar in it... but legally they were not allowed to include the Jaguar with the rest of the contents
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