Texas Department to Address Apartment Complex Towing Practices Amid Controversy

The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation’s advisory board plans to discuss car towing practices at apartment complexes, focusing on issues related to online registration requirements and alleged targeting by tow truck companies.

In response to mounting concerns regarding car towing practices at apartment complexes, particularly concerning online registration processes, the advisory board for the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) is set to address the issue in its upcoming meeting.

The decision to discuss this matter comes after a FOX 4 investigation shed light on the challenges faced by residents who found themselves targeted by tow truck companies due to errors in online registration. According to an advisory board member, there has been a noticeable uptick in vehicles being towed linked to online registration requirements, echoing findings from the 2019 investigation.

Ronnie Lewis, a resident who experienced firsthand the aggressive tactics of tow truck companies at a southern Dallas apartment complex, shared his story, prompting further scrutiny of the issue. Lewis recounted his ordeal when his car vanished from a spot labeled “future resident” after the apartment office closed, with visitor spaces obstructed by large trash bins throughout the complex.

Despite prevailing in court, with the judge ruling in his favor and ordering the apartment complex to reimburse him $156, Lewis highlighted the cumbersome nature of the process, particularly for those unfamiliar with legal procedures. He emphasized the importance of addressing the broader implications of such practices, transcending individual cases.

Investigation uncovered numerous instances where individuals, predominantly from low-income apartment communities, faced towing after minor errors in online registration forms. Typographical errors, such as incorrect letters or numbers, led to unwarranted towing, exacerbating financial burdens for affected residents.

As the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation prepares to deliberate on this matter, the focus remains on ensuring fair and transparent practices concerning car towing at apartment complexes, with particular attention to the impact on vulnerable communities.


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