Your Vehicle -- What
are my rights?
I live up in the hills on a quiet street in Tujunga.
I have only seen a cop car on my street once in five years. My neighbors
across the street are nice. But, they always park on my side right
in front of my house.
I have big trees that provide lots of shade when it's hot out!
Sometimes they will have a car parked for weeks at a time. This
is frustrating for me because they take up both sides of the street
I don't want to say anything to them that would cause bad vibes,
but I feel it is not polite to watch as I lug small children and
groceries up the street to get to my home.
What are my rights? Can I have them towed after a certain amount
Reply: from Bill Murray - LACP.org - LA Community Policing
Re: Move Your Vehicle -- What
are my rights?
While I understand your frustration at the fact that your "nice"
neighbors are "impolite" when they park directly in front
of your house, there's not a great deal you can do unless the car
is left there a long time ... and then there's something you can
Since you didn't indicate otherwise, I'm assuming for the sake of
this response there aren't "No Parking" signs on your
Unmarked streets in Los Angeles are public spaces, and anyone can
use them. It's pretty much a case of "first-come, first-serve."
And parking in most areas is at a premium.
I live on a block where we know each other, and over time we have
"claimed" specific spots we prefer, generally in front
of our own houses. For the most part we simply avoid parking in
each other's spaces.
But this is just a matter of common courtesy. When someone parks
in "my" spot I have to park in an unfamiliar space and
walk back. If there was a repeated problem with one of my neighbors
I'd be inclined to try to say something to him first.
Even though there's no way to reserve your spot for yourself, there
are rules about how long a vehicle can remain parked in any public
locale in Los Angeles. Basically every car must be moved each 72
Although this rule is most often used against abandoned cars, it
applies to all vehicles on city streets.
The Department of Transportation has the responsibility for Parking
Enforcement, so they, not the LAPD, will take complaints and assign
someone to come around to take a look at the car in question.
Usually a bright green card is affixed to the windshield of the
vehicle explaining that the owner has 72 hours to move it (and I
believe there's still a requirement it be driven one mile, but it
can be returned to the same street). They'll come back three days
later to see if the car's still there, at which point it can be
I used the search function on the LA City website (I entered the
phrase parking AND 72), which returned the following results:
City Service: 877 ASK-LAPD - Non-emergency Police Service
Service Detail: How Can I Report An Abandoned Car?
A person may call his or her local police station or the Parking
Violations Bureau, Department of Transportation, at 1-800-ABANDON,
to report an abandoned vehicle. An officer from the Parking
Violations Bureau will be dispatched and will issue a parking
citation. The officer will return after a 72-hour period. If
the vehicle has not been moved, the officer will impound the
vehicle. There is additional information online at
By the way, I know all this from first hand experience, and believe
me it makes a person conscious of the 72 hour rule to find a green
card on the windshield a couple of times (and an even bigger
impression if your car is towed).
Hope this answers your question. Thanks for writing!
Yours in service,
LA Community Policing
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