Problem with foreign-registered vehicle

16 posts in this topic

A vehicle without German licence plates is parked on a city street. A circular yellow sticker (dated May 3rd) appears on the windscreen, saying that the vehicle shouldn’t be there and mentioning a possible fine of up to 10,000 Euros. Twelve days have already elapsed since the sticker was stuck, and the vehicle cannot be immediately moved because of the condition of its battery.

What is likely to happen next? Is there a fixed time interval between the initual issuance of the sticker and a subsequent visit by the authorities?

Very importantly, what is the legal situation as to how long a vehicle may remain on city streets? There must be many foreign-registered cars on Berlin’s streets, so the question appears to be: How long can a vehicle be here before it becomes illegal?

Finally, if the vehicle is promptly moved from its present site and -say- parked off-street somewhere, will the problem go away or am I, so to speak, a marked man?

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Foreign plates are fine, as long as the registration is visibly up to date. Since the police have marked it for towing, I have to assume that's not the case. You usually have about 14-21 days before the car is towed away, but you can call your local police station to find out the specifics.

 

Towing is usually the last resort, by the way, after the car has racked up a number of tickets that don't seem to have been acknowledged. You'll probably be facing several fines.

 

You would have to have it towed somewhere off the street - preferably a private garage. Unregistered cars aren't allowed to be parked on city streets. But you'll still have to pay the fines for the tickets that you've (presumably) incurred.

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El Jeffo, thanks.

The "up-to-date registration" you mention would, presumably, be a foreign registration. My vehicle's registration (abroad)is up-to-date but there's no way that a passing policeman would know this (nothing displayed). Are you saying that my vehicle could in fact be on the street legally?

By this time tomorrow I hope to have moved it (am on my way to get the battery sorted out). Where to, I'm not yet sure.

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If your car is properly registered and insured, then it is generally on the street legally, regardless of whether it has foreign or German plates. If it hasn't been moved for a long time, however, your local beat cop might have thought it's been abandoned. Assuming the car is parked legally, that's the only reason I can think of for them to flag it for towing. Were there any parking tickets (ancient or otherwise) under the wipers?

 

Like I said, a call to your local precinct might clear everything up.

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Does a car have to be insured to be parked on the street? If so, which kind of insurance would this be: third-party, presumably? But a car not being driven wouldn't, I suppose, be able to do any damage to a third party -unless, for example, something fell off it and hit a passing pedestrian usw (?) The last time I moved it, I had third-party, "green-card" insurance but at present don't have that (have nothing).

It's been in the same street for almost 14 months and at the same spot for six months.

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Oh! I just posted an answer on your other thread, but for the benefit of any future readers I'll add this here as well.

 

Yes. In Germany any powered vehicle (unless limited to a max speed of 6km/h) which is used or placed on a road or other place intended for use by traffic must be covered by a valid third-party liability insurance policy. A vehicle keeper, user or owner who allows a vehicle to be used or placed on the road etc. in contravention of the law can be subjected to some very hefty penalties. For example, if deemed to have been an intentional act not only could the car be confiscated, but the perpetrator could also face imprisonment up to 12 months or a very heavy fine.

 

Source '2B-enhanced' google-translation: from the Law on compulsory insurance for motor vehicle operators (insurance law)

 

 

§ 6

(1) Any person who used a vehicle on public roads or places or permitted its use although there is not or no longer the necessary liability insurance contract for the vehicle according to § 1, shall be punished with imprisonment up to one year or a fine.

(2) If the offender acts through negligence, the punishment shall be imprisonment of up to six months or a fine up to one hundred eighty days rates.

(3) If the offense was committed intentionally, the vehicle may be confiscated if it belongs to the perpetrator or user at the time of the decision.

When I got here in the mid-80s things were a bit more relaxed, although not quite as much as in the UK. However, IME over the last 20 years there's been no way around traffic or vehicle laws in any of the "established" EU countries.

 

2B

 

ETA:

It may be that the local bogeys have their eye on it, (easy for them in the case of a foreign plated [RHD?] car) so, if getting it insured quickly proves to be difficult you'd be well advised to have it towed by a garage or ADAC contractor to an off-street private parking place ASAP. For sure that'll cost you frustratineuros, but that's still a hell of a lot cheaper and much less embarrassing than the alternative of taking a chance and getting nailed en route.

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I think that the basic problem here is your having left the car parked on the road for too long - if the police have noticed that the car is sat there, apparently not being used, and possibly having been abandoned, there really isn´t much they can do but arrange to have it towed away.

Bear in mind that the roads are not designed to be used as long-term car parks!

A problem with the battery of the car really is a very poor excuse - either get a jump-start from a friend, or go and buy a new battery and get the car parked somewhere else.

As for the insurance part, 2B obviously covered it nicely, but just think what might happen if the car is somehow involved in an accident and you do not have insurance - whatever the costs, you would have to pay everything out of your pocket, plus a fine for not having had insurance in the first place!

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Does a car have to be insured to be parked on the street? If so, which kind of insurance would this be: third-party, presumably? But a car not being driven wouldn't, I suppose, be able to do any damage to a third party -unless, for example, something fell off it and hit a passing pedestrian usw (?) The last time I moved it, I had third-party, "green-card" insurance but at present don't have that (have nothing).

It's been in the same street for almost 14 months and at the same spot for six months.

 

That could be a problem, you have to register any foreign cars after a year (or get rid of it) maybe they've had their eye on the car ofr a while

 

Also yeah, the insurance (and maybe tax) thing too.

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how does one report an abandoned car?

 

Big shortage of parking locally, and there is a car with plants growing out of it for several years, I'd like to see towed.

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Simply call the police, describing the car and the precise location. In a day or so stickers will appear on the car advising the owners to contact them or move the car. After 14 days it will be towed - the police will attempt to contact the last registered owner from the plates or VIN and charge him for the pleasure.

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Have searched on forums but can’t find anything remotely linked to my query...!

 

There is an abandoned classic car in our apartment garage. We moved in a year ago and it was there but I guess it’s been there for a lot longer judging by the layer of dust! 

 

My brother visited me at Christmas, he is a car enthusiast and asked me to find out if he could buy it. 

 

Any ideas where I could start?!

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