Take a survey: Tell us how we're doing!

Auction procedure

Requirements for registered tow truck operators

When auctioning abandoned vehicles, you must:

  • Publish a notice 3–10 days before the auction.
  • If the bidding site is different than the licensed office location, post a visible sign at your office with the details of the auction location.
  • Hold auctions during daylight hours on normal business days.
  • Post the following at the bidding site:
    • The auction procedures.
    • The newspaper ad listing the vehicles for sale.
  • Allow a 3-hour public viewing period before the auction.
  • Hold the auction so everyone present has equal time and opportunity to bid.
  • Use an open bid process, include all written bids, so everyone knows the dollar value that must be exceeded.
  • If you choose to use pre-auction bid methods, written bids:
    • May be submitted up to 5 days before the auction.
    • Must identify the specific vehicle and bid amount.
  • Record the 2 highest bids in writing.
  • If the high bidder defaults, give the next bidder the right to purchase the vehicle for the amount of his or her bid.
  • If you choose to bid at the auction, you must disclose the bid as such and may not use it to set a minimum for other bids.

Requirements for bidders

  • All bidders must be present at the auction, unless they have submitted written bids. (The tow truck operator may choose not to allow pre-auction written bids.)
  • The successful bidder must apply for a title within 15 days, unless otherwise provided by law.

Related laws

Washington Healthcare Finder
Access Washington – official state government website