A few more tidbits for you (do these NOW, while you have your car!):
1. Remove your Registration from the glove compartment and put it in your wallet.
It’s kind of silly to think about, but I didn’t do this. If I were to have been pulled over, this would have been pretty awkward. “Honest, officer – they took it.”
2. Be aware of any sensitive information in the car (paperwork, mp3 sd cards, etc.)
Unfortunately this guy got a few SD cards totalling 1-2 GB of mp3s. There probably is more than just mp3s on there… word documents, pdfs, anything else I had used the flash memory for before relegating it to the mp3 player. I’m sure I deleted much of the non-mp3 stuff, but not all.
3. I just got a new mp3 player – with integrated memory so this doesn’t happen again. Besides, the sd cards all got corrupted within 6 months.
When the joyous day comes when you get the “we’ve recovered your vehicle” phone call from the police, there are a few things you need to know.
#1. – This will be a pain.
I remember an un-named friend who had his car towed. I gave him a lift to bust it out of jail. It was a time-consuming process on a Saturday. We had to go to the city to pay a fine and release the car from the lot. Then we had to go to the lot with the paperwork and release it. It was a pain, but I didn’t mind since I am a good friend.
#2. As you saw from this example, you will likely have to go to another location to get the right paperwork.
So Location #1 = where you get Release Paperwork
Location #2 = where you get the Car
#3. This is surely on the other side of town.
#4. Double the locations, double the lines, double your pleasure (if you enjoy involuntary waiting)
#5. All for Naught?
If you showed up at the towing lot without being informed about the release paperwork (I would have if I hadn’t google searched and called the lot ahead of time), you get to repeat the whole process, if you have enough Saturday left. Remember “Chutes and Ladders”?
Tip #1 – Know your license plate #.
The cops will surely find your car way faster this way. The only other ID your car has is the VIN # (on the dashboard). Think about it – how much easier is it to spot a stolen license than a VIN. The car would need to be abandoned to get close enough to read the VIN. I learned this the hard way, and the cops found it within 2 weeks.
Side note: if you have Geico, they don’t know what the heck your license plate is either. I expected them to. The only way I found out was from the EZ-Pass account!
Side note #2: The license plate is also called a “tag”. the cop will look at you funny if you ask them what a “tag” is.
Sorry folks, I just broke the cardinal rule of blogging – never leave the reader hanging! But life is a bit busy… just let me say that the #1 thing I learned was to resist the overwhelming urge to curse the thief. I did the best I could to forgive and bless the guy. Things are looking up as a result. Go figure.
But today is a very busy day… See you then.
Yes, you read it right. Next week is Auto Theft Week.
I will be sharing some riveting and handy information, as well as soliciting input from the loyal CBB bloggers.
Readers will learn many helpful tidbits for their future reference, including:
What to Do
The Auto Theft Reporting Process
The Auto Recovery Process
Avoiding Even More Wasted Time
Title and Licensing Issues