If you’ve received a seizure notice/letter or your vehicle was seized on suspicion of being driven without a driving licence or valid insurance, go to our seized vehicle page to find the right information.
Here, you'll find information on what to do if your vehicle was impounded by the police because it was:
stolen, and found by us
involved in a collision
involved in a crime
driven in an anti-social manner
causing an obstruction or danger
abandoned after an incident involving the police
When you can get your vehicle back
If your vehicle has been impounded and is being kept at one of our recovery agent compounds you, as the registered keeper, will receive a notice letter when it’s ready for collection. If we need to keep the vehicle to carry out examinations we'll send a letter once the examinations are complete and the vehicle has been released.
You have seven days to collect the vehicle after it has been released, but if your vehicle was impounded because it was being driven in an anti-social manner you have fourteen days to collect it.
If your vehicle hasn’t been collected within these timeframes, it will be disposed of or sold.
How to reclaim your vehicle
You'll need to go to the compound to prove your identity, your ownership of the vehicle and pay any statutory charges. Or you can contact your insurance company who, if you have the appropriate cover, will arrange collection on your behalf.
If your vehicle had been stolen we recommend getting it safety checked at a recovery agent's garage.
The correct documents you need to reclaim your vehicle
When you visit the nominated police station you must produce these documents:
These charges are set by government, not the police, and vary depending on the weight and condition of the vehicle.
Please note, the daily storage charges start from midday the day after the vehicle was seized.
If your vehicle is over three years old and doesn't have a current MOT test pass certificate you can only drive it on a public road from the recovery depot to an MOT testing station. You must:
bring evidence from a garage of a pre-booked MOT appointment, or
arrange recovery at your own expense
If someone is reclaiming the vehicle on your behalf
If you can't go to the recovery agent's garage in person someone else can collect the vehicle on your behalf.
That person must bring with them the documents listed above and also:
an authority letter – a letter signed by you giving the person the authority to collect on your behalf
a copy of your passport or driving licence – so we can verify the signature on the letter of authority
The person collecting the vehicle on your behalf must also have a valid driving licence and a valid certificate of insurance that allows them to reclaim a vehicle and drive it away from the recovery agent's garage.
Collecting property from an impounded vehicle
If you want to get property from the impounded vehicle, but not the vehicle itself, you need to bring proof that you're the vehicle's owner or registered keeper (a V5C or V5C/10).
Someone else can collect property on your behalf, but they need to bring:
a letter of authority, signed by you, giving them permission to collect property from the vehicle
a copy of your passport or driving licence so we can verify the letter is signed by you
Please note, if the vehicle is badly damaged it might not be possible to get into it to remove property.
If your vehicle has been issued with a PG9 prohibition notice, isn't roadworthy or won’t start
If your vehicle has been issued with a PG9 prohibition notice, isn’t roadworthy or won’t start, you need to arrange for a fully trained, equipped and insured vehicle recovery agent to collect it at your own expense.
We don’t allow vehicles to be repaired while they’re at the pound (this includes changing tyres, repairing windscreens or jump starting).
Provisional driving licence holders
If you’re driving under a provisional licence you must bring someone who:
is over 21 and
has held a licence for more than three years
Make sure you have L plates on the vehicle.
If you don’t want to reclaim your vehicle
If you don’t want to reclaim your vehicle, this is called 'disclaiming', you don’t need to take any action. We'll dispose of it after 14 days.
Things to be aware of
Bring a set of keys, in case the driver didn't leave the keys in the vehicle.
If the vehicle was in a collision and you’re not sure it’s roadworthy, consider having it recovered by a professional recovery operator.
We highly recommend taking your vehicle to a garage for a safety check if you’re getting it back after it’s been stolen.
The police, including recovery agent staff, can't advise on whether your vehicle is roadworthy.
If your vehicle doesn’t have correct number plates and you’re planning on driving it, you must bring valid replacement plates when you collect it.