Take a look at our "Civil
& Vehicle Codes at a Glance" page or browse this page for
many common lien sale questions.
I Begin My Lien Sale?
If your lien is for towing and/or storage
only (ie. towing companies and official police impounding agencies) you
may start your lien at any point after the vehicle is in your
possession. HOWEVER: You may only charge a lien fee after 72
If work and/or services
are a part of your lien (ie. repair facilities, mechanics, car
dealerships, etc.) you may start your lien after a bill has been
presented to the owner or 15 days after work is completed, whichever
determines the value of the vehicle?
All of our lien sale
representatives are licenced with the state of California as vehicle
verifiers. It is their job to assist in determining the value of the
vehicle you are liening. Value is based upon the present condition of
the vehicle as it is in your possession and any repairs that have been
made by a licensed repair facility. Accrued storage charges do not add
to the value of the vehicle.
storage should I charge?
Storage rates are not regulated by
the state of California. If you are a business who makes it a practice
to regularly store vehicles, your daily storage rate should be clearly
posted within your customer's view. A lien sale will typically provide
you with no more than 60 days of storage at your posted rate. Should
the vehicle's value be determined to be more than $4,000.00 (or if your
lien sale has been previously opposed and you have received a letter of
continuation from the California Department of Motor Vehicles) you may
be elagible for up to 120 days of storage at your posted rate.
someone stop my lien sale?
YES. Any person
known to have an interest in the vehicle may stop your lien by filing a
Declaration of Oppisition with the California Department of Motor
Vehicles within the timeframe allowed by law (Typically within 10 days
of mailing the Notice of Pending Lien Sale.) A Declaration of
Opposition is (and must) be included with the Notice of Pending Lien
Sale we mail to all Registered Owners, Legal Owners and Interested
if someone stops (or opposes) my lien sale?
If you are notified by the
California Department of Motor Vehicles or by a representative of Clear
Choice Lien Service that a valid Declaration of Opposition has been
received, you have the following options:
- Obtain a
release of interest from the opposer.
- Determine that the opposer is not
serviceable at the address indicated on the Declaration of Opposition
(You will need documentation from process server or Marshall to
- File a judgement against the
opposer and receive a court judgment in your favor.
Regardless of which of the three options
you persue, a DMV
authorization to continue after unsuccessful service will be required
before you can proceed with a new lien sale. Therefore, we advise you
to forward any and all documentation you receive regarding an opposed
lien sale to our offices. We will need to file your documents with the
California Department of Motor Vehicles so that we may receive the
appropriate continuation documents on your behalf.
What if my customer pays
part of thier bill?
amount of money from your customer will invalidate your lien!
Once you accept any money towards from your customer, the lien sale is
What happens after the
Sign and date
all lien dale documents and deliver them to the purchaser at the time
of sale. The purchaser is granted FIVE days to submit a completed and
signed set of lien sale documents to any authorized California
Department of Motor Vehicles field office. If you sell the vehicle for
more than you are owed, you must remit any excess monies received to
the Department of Motor Vehicles, Lien Sale Section, 2415 1st Ave.,
Sacramento, CA 95818 for deposit into the Motor Vehicle Account, State
Transportation Fund. Remit with a complete copy of the Certificate of
What if there is back registration
or tickets on the vehicle?
Tickets for parking violations and vehicular
infractions are not the buyer's responsibility. If the vehicle comes
into your possession with expired registration, the buyer will be
required to pay the fees and the penalties to properly register the
vehicle. If the vehicle registration expired while in your possession,
the buyer can usually pay the fees without paying penalties.
What if I sell the vehicle for more than I'm owed?
sell the vehicle for more than you are owed, you must remit any excess
monies received to the Department of Motor Vehicles, Lien Sale Section,
2415 1st Ave., Sacramento, CA 95818 for deposit into the Motor Vehicle
Account, State Transportation Fund. Remit with a complete copy of the
Certificate of Lien Sale.
What do I do on the day
The vehicle must be available for
inspection at least one hour prior to sale. A lien sale is a public
sale and anyone with an interest, including the the genreal public or
those claiming an interest in the vehicle, are welcome to attend and
bid on the vehicle. Bidding generally starts at what is owed and sealed
bids are not allowed.