Dealing With Impounded Cars In The UAE

Shambhavi Singh
Est. Reading Time 5 mins

UAE is renowned for its stringent traffic regulations and commitment to road safety. To deter traffic violations, substantial fines and penalties are enforced. Certain infractions can result in significant financial penalties, while others can lead to your vehicle being impounded. Dealing with impounded cars can be challenging, as many individuals need clarification on the necessary steps.

It's always advisable to avoid such violations, but if you find yourself in such a predicament, this guide is here to assist you. Let’s start with the reasons for impoundment.

Common Reasons For Impoundment

Traffic regulations in the UAE are designed to ensure road safety and penalise actions that jeopardise lives and traffic flow. Various violations can lead to vehicle impoundment. Let's explore some common violations that can result in car confiscation:

  • Driving under the influence of intoxication.
  • Involvement in accidents.
  • Risking one's own life and the safety of others.
  • Damaging private or public properties.
  • Driving an unlicensed or expired registration vehicle.
  • Operating a car without a number plate.
  • Disregarding red traffic signals.
  • Failing to stop after an accident.
  • Driving in the wrong direction.
  • Illegally transporting passengers or hazardous materials.
  • Attempting to evade traffic authorities.
  • Exceeding the maximum speed limit by over 60 km/h.
  • Unauthorised car modifications.
  • Operating a noisy vehicle.
  • Engaging in street racing.
  • Trying to elude traffic police.

Can I Get A Waiver From Impoundment?

You can obtain an impoundment waiver by paying a specified amount if your vehicle is impounded. The exact amount varies depending on the specific police authority of each emirate.

For instance, in Abu Dhabi, according to Law No. 5 of 2020 concerning vehicle impoundment in the emirate, the release of an impounded vehicle and certain fines may require a payment of Dh 10,000.

What is a Smart Impound?

Alternatively, if you prefer not to pursue an impoundment waiver, you can opt for a 'smart impound' service throughout the UAE. This service lets police authorities install a compact electronic device in your vehicle's system. This satellite-connected device ensures constant monitoring of the car from the operation room in case it's moved before the impoundment period concludes.

Once the impoundment period ends and all traffic fines are settled, the smart impound device must be returned to the Traffic and Licensing Services Center.

What Are The Consequences Of Moving A Vehicle Which Is Under Smart Impoundment?

If you move your vehicle during the impoundment period, several consequences may occur:

  • The smart impound order may be re-imposed on the violator.
  • The impound period initially determined for the violation may be replaced with a specific monetary amount.
  • The vehicle impound may be carried out at the impound yard, subject to the regulations and conditions within the emirate.

In addition to fines, various service fees are involved during the impoundment process.

1) For Impound Yard:

  • A Dh100 fee is applicable for the vehicle release certificate if the vehicle is impounded at the impound yard.
  • If the impound period elapses and the owner does not claim the vehicle, a storage fee of Dh50 applies, not to exceed Dh 3,000.

2) For Smart Impound:

  • If you choose the intelligent impound service, the following service charges apply:
  • Dh 500 for the first month.
  • Dh 100 for each additional month.
  • A delay fine of Dh50 is imposed from the eighth day after the impound period concludes.

How To Get Your Car Out Of Impound In UAE?

Releasing your impounded car is a straightforward process. Clearing your fines and waiting for the impound period to conclude is all it takes. You can settle your fines through the regional traffic authority or law enforcement services.

Here's a quick overview of how to pay fines in Dubai:

  • Check your fines using the online portals of Dubai Police or the Road and Transport Authority (RTA).
  • Verify the number of days until your car can be released.
  • After paying the fine, contact the relevant police station for information on impoundment charges and the yard's location.
  • Once your pending fines are cleared, head to the impound site to retrieve your car.

Impounding Period

Impounded vehicles are typically transported to the local police or traffic authority impound yard. The duration of the impoundment period varies depending on the nature of the violation and can range from 7 to 60 days. However, the impoundment period extends to 90 days for driving without number plates.

Charges Associated With Vehicle Impounding

Impounded cars can come with unexpected additional service charges. For example, there may be an additional transportation cost of up to AED 500 for impounded vehicles. These additional charges are intended to further deter individuals from committing severe traffic violations and encourage safer and more responsible driving practices.

Getting Your Car Back During Impoundment Period

For individuals whose livelihood relies on their vehicles, gaining access to their car during the impoundment period is an option. This can be achieved by paying an additional amount for the waiver, the exact sum contingent on the regional police of the respective emirate. However, it's important to note that all outstanding dues, including confiscation charges, must be settled fully.

New Regulations For Impounding Of Vehicles

The UAE's commitment to maintaining and updating its laws is evident, with recent initiatives to enforce various regulations, including measures to combat dirty cars. To ensure the cleanliness and upkeep of the city, unwashed and abandoned cars are subject to a warning sticker. The authorities may impound the vehicle if the owner does not respond and clean it. If the owner remains unresponsive and forgets to pay the fine within 15 days, the car can be auctioned.

Abu Dhabi follows a similar approach, where dust-covered cars left unattended for an extended duration may be impounded. Additionally, your vehicle can be confiscated if your pending traffic fines accumulate to AED 7,000 or more. This recent rule was introduced to address the issue of numerous unpaid fines in Abu Dhabi.

Conclusion

In conclusion, navigating the process of dealing with impounded cars in the UAE can be challenging, but it is important to understand the regulations and options available. Whether you pay fines, opt for an intelligent impound system, or explore impoundment waivers, staying informed and compliant is advisable. The UAE's strict traffic laws and enforcement measures reflect a commitment to road safety and responsible driving. Awareness of the rules and available solutions is vital for a hassle-free resolution and a smoother experience when facing impoundment situations.

FAQs

Q. What are the steps to take if my car is impounded in the UAE while I am on vacation?
If your car is impounded in the UAE while you're on vacation, contact the local authorities, clear fines, and explore impoundment waiver options if applicable.

Q. What are the options for getting my car out of impound if I cannot afford to pay the fees?
If you can't afford impound fees, inquire about payment plans or consider the innovative impound system to monitor your car at home during the impound period.

Q. What happens to my car if it is sold at auction?
If your car is sold at auction, there are scarce chances of getting it back from the new owner. You may contact the police authorities and describe valid reasons for not paying the fines on time to get a solution.

UAE is renowned for its stringent traffic regulations and commitment to road safety. To deter traffic violations, substantial fines and penalties are enforced. Certain infractions can result in significant financial penalties, while others can lead to your vehicle being impounded. Dealing with impounded cars can be challenging, as many individuals need clarification on the necessary steps.

It's always advisable to avoid such violations, but if you find yourself in such a predicament, this guide is here to assist you. Let’s start with the reasons for impoundment.

Common Reasons For Impoundment

Traffic regulations in the UAE are designed to ensure road safety and penalise actions that jeopardise lives and traffic flow. Various violations can lead to vehicle impoundment. Let's explore some common violations that can result in car confiscation:

  • Driving under the influence of intoxication.
  • Involvement in accidents.
  • Risking one's own life and the safety of others.
  • Damaging private or public properties.
  • Driving an unlicensed or expired registration vehicle.
  • Operating a car without a number plate.
  • Disregarding red traffic signals.
  • Failing to stop after an accident.
  • Driving in the wrong direction.
  • Illegally transporting passengers or hazardous materials.
  • Attempting to evade traffic authorities.
  • Exceeding the maximum speed limit by over 60 km/h.
  • Unauthorised car modifications.
  • Operating a noisy vehicle.
  • Engaging in street racing.
  • Trying to elude traffic police.

Can I Get A Waiver From Impoundment?

You can obtain an impoundment waiver by paying a specified amount if your vehicle is impounded. The exact amount varies depending on the specific police authority of each emirate.

For instance, in Abu Dhabi, according to Law No. 5 of 2020 concerning vehicle impoundment in the emirate, the release of an impounded vehicle and certain fines may require a payment of Dh 10,000.

What is a Smart Impound?

Alternatively, if you prefer not to pursue an impoundment waiver, you can opt for a 'smart impound' service throughout the UAE. This service lets police authorities install a compact electronic device in your vehicle's system. This satellite-connected device ensures constant monitoring of the car from the operation room in case it's moved before the impoundment period concludes.

Once the impoundment period ends and all traffic fines are settled, the smart impound device must be returned to the Traffic and Licensing Services Center.

What Are The Consequences Of Moving A Vehicle Which Is Under Smart Impoundment?

If you move your vehicle during the impoundment period, several consequences may occur:

  • The smart impound order may be re-imposed on the violator.
  • The impound period initially determined for the violation may be replaced with a specific monetary amount.
  • The vehicle impound may be carried out at the impound yard, subject to the regulations and conditions within the emirate.

In addition to fines, various service fees are involved during the impoundment process.

1) For Impound Yard:

  • A Dh100 fee is applicable for the vehicle release certificate if the vehicle is impounded at the impound yard.
  • If the impound period elapses and the owner does not claim the vehicle, a storage fee of Dh50 applies, not to exceed Dh 3,000.

2) For Smart Impound:

  • If you choose the intelligent impound service, the following service charges apply:
  • Dh 500 for the first month.
  • Dh 100 for each additional month.
  • A delay fine of Dh50 is imposed from the eighth day after the impound period concludes.

How To Get Your Car Out Of Impound In UAE?

Releasing your impounded car is a straightforward process. Clearing your fines and waiting for the impound period to conclude is all it takes. You can settle your fines through the regional traffic authority or law enforcement services.

Here's a quick overview of how to pay fines in Dubai:

  • Check your fines using the online portals of Dubai Police or the Road and Transport Authority (RTA).
  • Verify the number of days until your car can be released.
  • After paying the fine, contact the relevant police station for information on impoundment charges and the yard's location.
  • Once your pending fines are cleared, head to the impound site to retrieve your car.

Impounding Period

Impounded vehicles are typically transported to the local police or traffic authority impound yard. The duration of the impoundment period varies depending on the nature of the violation and can range from 7 to 60 days. However, the impoundment period extends to 90 days for driving without number plates.

Charges Associated With Vehicle Impounding

Impounded cars can come with unexpected additional service charges. For example, there may be an additional transportation cost of up to AED 500 for impounded vehicles. These additional charges are intended to further deter individuals from committing severe traffic violations and encourage safer and more responsible driving practices.

Getting Your Car Back During Impoundment Period

For individuals whose livelihood relies on their vehicles, gaining access to their car during the impoundment period is an option. This can be achieved by paying an additional amount for the waiver, the exact sum contingent on the regional police of the respective emirate. However, it's important to note that all outstanding dues, including confiscation charges, must be settled fully.

New Regulations For Impounding Of Vehicles

The UAE's commitment to maintaining and updating its laws is evident, with recent initiatives to enforce various regulations, including measures to combat dirty cars. To ensure the cleanliness and upkeep of the city, unwashed and abandoned cars are subject to a warning sticker. The authorities may impound the vehicle if the owner does not respond and clean it. If the owner remains unresponsive and forgets to pay the fine within 15 days, the car can be auctioned.

Abu Dhabi follows a similar approach, where dust-covered cars left unattended for an extended duration may be impounded. Additionally, your vehicle can be confiscated if your pending traffic fines accumulate to AED 7,000 or more. This recent rule was introduced to address the issue of numerous unpaid fines in Abu Dhabi.

Conclusion

In conclusion, navigating the process of dealing with impounded cars in the UAE can be challenging, but it is important to understand the regulations and options available. Whether you pay fines, opt for an intelligent impound system, or explore impoundment waivers, staying informed and compliant is advisable. The UAE's strict traffic laws and enforcement measures reflect a commitment to road safety and responsible driving. Awareness of the rules and available solutions is vital for a hassle-free resolution and a smoother experience when facing impoundment situations.

FAQs

Q. What are the steps to take if my car is impounded in the UAE while I am on vacation?
If your car is impounded in the UAE while you're on vacation, contact the local authorities, clear fines, and explore impoundment waiver options if applicable.

Q. What are the options for getting my car out of impound if I cannot afford to pay the fees?
If you can't afford impound fees, inquire about payment plans or consider the innovative impound system to monitor your car at home during the impound period.

Q. What happens to my car if it is sold at auction?
If your car is sold at auction, there are scarce chances of getting it back from the new owner. You may contact the police authorities and describe valid reasons for not paying the fines on time to get a solution.

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