Getting towed: Your rights when dealing with tow-truck operators
Complaining about a tow-truck operator
Making a complaint about a tow-truck operator
If you have a complaint about your car being towed – for example if it was damaged, or you think the fee was too high – you should first complain directly to the tow-truck operator. You should put your complaint in writing. It’s also a good idea to send a copy of your complaint to the landowner, if it was towed from private property.
Tow-truck businesses have to keep a register of all the written complaints they receive. They have to keep the register available for it to be inspected by a police officer or traffic warden at any reasonable time. Complaints have to stay in the register for at least two years.
What can I do if I’m not happy with the towing operator’s response to my complaint?
If you’re not happy with the outcome after complaining directly to the tow-truck operator, consider one of the following options:
- contacting the NZ Transport Agency – the NZTA deals with licensing of tow-truck operators and enforces the legal requirements that apply to tow-truck operations (see “Legal requirements for tow-truck operators”)
- taking the issue to the Disputes Tribunal, if for example you want compensation for damage to your car (see the chapter “The Disputes Tribunal”)
- complaining to the police if, for example, you believe you were assaulted.