What is an abandoned vehicle?
A vehicle may be considered abandoned if:
- the registration is listed as expired or cancelled on the VicRoads website
- the vehicle has no number plates, or
- the vehicle is registered but has not moved for at least 2 months.
Abandoned vehicles are unsightly and can be unsafe.
Vehicles include cars, motorcycles, trucks, trailers and caravans.
How to check a vehicle's registration status
Check if a vehicle is registered on the VicRoads website. This will show if the vehicle is unregistered or stolen. You will need the vehicle's registration number from the number plates.
An expired registration label no longer means that a vehicle is unregistered. Since 1 January 2014, VicRoads does not issue or require registration labels to be placed on the windscreen of vehicles registered in Victoria.
How to report an abandoned vehicle
Report an abandoned vehicle to Council
Only report a vehicle to Council if its registration is listed as expired or cancelled on the VicRoads website, the vehicle has no number plates, or the vehicle is registered but has not moved for at least 2 months.
Report a stolen vehicle to Victoria Police
If the vehicle is reported as stolen on the VicRoads website, call Victoria Police at Brunswick on 8378 6000 or Fawkner on 9355 6000. Do not call 000.
You will need to advise Victoria Police of the exact location of the vehicle, its make, model, colour and registration number.
Registration number not found
If the registration number is not found on the VicRoads website, contact VicRoads.
What happens after you report an abandoned vehicle to Council?
- A Council officer will inspect the vehicle.
- If the vehicle is unregistered, a yellow sticker is placed on the front windscreen of the vehicle. This sticker means Council considers the vehicle to be abandoned. A Council officer will re-inspect the vehicle after 48 hours, if the vehicle has not been removed arrangements will be made to have the vehicle impounded.
- If the vehicle is registered, Council leaves the vehicle for 2 months from the date of inspection. If the vehicle remains after 2 months, a yellow sticker is then placed on the front windscreen of the vehicle.
- If the owner does not take action within 48 hours of a yellow sticker being placed on the vehicle, the abandoned vehicle may be impounded by Council.
- If the vehicle is not claimed, Council either disposes or sells the vehicle.
What to do if Council considers your vehicle abandoned or your vehicle has been impounded.
If your vehicle has been issued with a pink notice
A pink notice means your vehicle has been identified as a potential abandoned vehicle.
You should move the vehicle promptly as this alerts both neighbours and Council that the vehicle is not abandoned.
If your vehicle has been issued with a yellow sticker
A yellow sticker on the front windscreen of a vehicle notifies the owner that Council considers the vehicle abandoned.
The owner has 48 hours to:
- Register the vehicle if it is unregistered: A vehicle which has expired registration cannot be on a public road or carpark.
- Move the vehicle to private property: A vehicle stored on private property does not need to be registered. A temporary registration permit from VicRoads allows the vehicle to be moved to private property during daylight hours.
- Donate the vehicle to Kids Under Cover: It is free and the sale of the vehicle helps build homes for homeless and at risk young people. Visit the Donate Your Car website or call 1800 801 633 for further information, or
- Do nothing: A Council officer will reinspect the vehicle after 48 hours and if the vehicle has not moved from the road or public space the vehicle will be impounded.
Contact Council as soon as possible to discuss your options and to advise Council of the action you intend to take. Council may grant an extension depending on the circumstances.
If your vehicle has been impounded by Council
If your vehicle has been impounded, contact Council to arrange to retrieve the car or to discuss other options.
A vehicle may be impounded if no action is taken within 48 hours of a yellow sticker being placed on the vehicle.
There is an impound fee of $425.00 for standard vehicles, $600 for heavy vehicle haulage and a daily charge of $15.00.
If the vehicle is not claimed, Council will either dispose of it or donate it to the Kids Under Cover Donate Your Car program.
Donate your old car
Before you decide to get rid of that old or unwanted car sitting in your driveway consider donating it to Kids Under Cover - a not-for-profit organisation that prevents youth homelessness by building homes and providing scholarships and mentors for at-risk young people.
Donating your unwanted car to the Donate Your Car program is a free and fast alternative to selling or trading your vehicle. Your car will be collected and auctioned for free and Kids Under Cover receives 100 per cent of the sale proceeds.
All donations are tax deductible, no matter what condition the car is in.
Visit the Donate Your Car website or call 1800 801 633.