New Florida Law Protects Consumers Against Dishonest Towers

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., March 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — A new measure to protect Florida consumers against dishonest towers was signed into law recently by Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL). The legislation (HB 179), which was strongly supported by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), will provide critical consumer protections so Floridians do not become a victim of predatory towing practices. It was sponsored by Representative Melony Bell (R-Fort Meade) in the Florida House of Representatives. A companion bill was sponsored by Senator Keith Perry (R-Gainesville) in the Florida Senate.

“Predatory towing in Florida has emerged as a pressing issue for the Sunshine State, significantly impacting individuals’ lives and livelihoods and this measure will go a long way in implementing critical reform measures,” said Eric De Campos, Senior Director of Strategy, Policy and Government Affairs for the National Insurance Crime Bureau. “We really appreciate the hard work by Representative Bell and Senator Perry to address this issue, because predatory towing places significant financial burdens on unsuspecting vehicle owners as hidden towing fees leaves individuals with an unexpected and hefty expense. We also want to thank the legislature for addressing this important issue, and the governor for signing this bill into law.”

NICB noted that vehicle accidents that result in predatory towing practices remain a significant issue for policymakers across Florida and the country. After an accident, vehicle owners find themselves in high-stress situations that can create the perfect opportunity for unscrupulous towers to exploit victims. Law enforcement agencies have seen examples of towers charging accident victims exorbitant fees for a tow requiring only a few-miles – sometimes as high as $10,000 for a single, routine tow.

“There is a real need for comprehensive reform to protect consumers from unfair and exploitative practices. Until meaningful reform is enacted, individuals in Florida will remain vulnerable to the pitfalls of predatory towing, with the potential for financial hardship and emotional distress looming over every parking decision,” said Rep. Bell.

“We need decisive action to combat predatory towing practices and ensure fairness and transparency for Florida’s residents,” said Senator Perry. “This law would implement important measures that protect consumers and promote accountability within the towing industry.”

The new law will:

  • Require reasonable towing and storage fees so that consumers don’t face fraudulent or inflated charges;
  • Require towers to accept additional methods of payment to allow consumers more flexibility to pay their bills and for towers to receive the money they are owed more quickly;
  • Shorten notice of lien periods so consumers can more quickly get their vehicles released; and
  • Extend the amount of time in which vehicle owners may recover their vehicles before they are sold off.

About the National Insurance Crime Bureau: Headquartered in Oak Brook, Ill., the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) is the nation’s leading not-for-profit organization exclusively dedicated to combatting and preventing insurance crime through Intelligence, Analytics, and Operations; Education and Crime Prevention; and Strategy, Policy, and Advocacy. NICB is supported by more than 1,200 property and casualty insurance companies and self-insured organizations. To learn more, visit

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SOURCE National Insurance Crime Bureau

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