Code Section Group

Vehicle Code - VEH

DIVISION 3. REGISTRATION OF VEHICLES AND CERTIFICATES OF TITLE [4000 - 9808]

  ( Division 3 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )

CHAPTER 6. Registration and Weight Fees [9101 - 9808]

  ( Chapter 6 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )

ARTICLE 6. Enforcement of Liens [9800 - 9808]
  ( Article 6 repealed and added by Stats. 1982, Ch. 664, Sec. 8. )

9800.
  

(a) Payments for any of the following, and any interest, penalties, or service fees added thereto, required to register or transfer the registration of a vehicle, constitute a lien on the vehicle on which they are due or which was involved in the offense, and on any other vehicle owned by the owner of that vehicle:

(1) Registration fees.

(2) Transfer fees.

(3) License fees.

(4) Use taxes.

(5) Penalties for offenses relating to the standing or parking of a vehicle for which a notice of parking violation has been served on the owner, and any administrative service fee added to the penalty.

(6) Any court-imposed fine or penalty assessment, and any administrative service fee added thereto, which is subject to collection by the department.

(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), if a person is cited for a foreign registered auxiliary dolly, semitrailer, or trailer having been operated without current year registration or valid California permits or registration, an amount equal to the minimum registration fees or transfer fees, and any penalty added thereto, from the date they became due, shall, by election of the power unit operator, constitute a lien upon the California registered power unit which was pulling the dolly, semitrailer, or trailer. However, this subdivision is not applicable if the citation is issued at a scale operated by the Department of the California Highway Patrol and registration for the vehicle can be issued there immediately upon payment of the fees due.

(c) Every lien arising under this section expires three years from the date the fee, tax, or parking penalty first became due unless the lien is perfected pursuant to subdivision (d).

(d) A lien is perfected when a notice is mailed to the registered and legal owners at the addresses shown in the department’s records and the lien is recorded on the electronic vehicle registration records of the department. A perfected lien shall expire five years from the date of perfection.

(e) Employees and members of the Department of the California Highway Patrol assigned to commercial vehicle scale facilities may possess and sell trip permits approved by the Department of Motor Vehicles.

(Amended by Stats. 1992, Ch. 1199, Sec. 10. Effective September 30, 1992.)

9801.
  

(a) (1) When the payment required for the registration or transfer of a vehicle is delinquent pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 9800, the department may collect the amount of the lien on the vehicle plus costs, not to exceed two hundred fifty dollars ($250), by the filing of a certificate requesting judgment pursuant to Section 9805, or by appropriate civil action and by the seizure and sale of the vehicle or any other vehicle owned by the owner of the unregistered vehicle.

(2) In the case of a leased vehicle, the authority provided in paragraph (1) to seize and sell the vehicle or any other vehicle owned by the owner of that vehicle shall not apply to a lien for any delinquency for which only the lessee is liable pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 10879 of the Revenue and Taxation Code.

(b) At least 10 days before the seizure, notice of the lien and of the intent to seize and sell the vehicle shall be given by the department to the registered and legal owners, and to any other person known to be claiming an interest in the vehicle, by registered mail addressed to those persons at the last known addresses appearing on the records of the department.

(c) Any person receiving the notice of the lien and the intent to seize and sell the vehicle may request a hearing to contest the existence or amount of the lien. If no hearing is requested, the vehicle shall be seized and sold.

(d) If a hearing is requested, 10 days’ notice shall be given of the time and place of the hearing, which shall be held within the county of residence of the person requesting the hearing or of the registered owner. The hearing shall be conducted by a referee who shall submit findings and recommendations to the director or his or her authorized representative, who shall decide the matter. The decision shall be effective on notice thereof to the interested parties. However, the director or his or her authorized representative may rescind the decision and reconsider the matter for good cause shown at any time within three years after the date the disputed fee or tax first became due, or within one year from the hearing, whichever is later.

(e) At any time before seizure or sale, any registered owner, legal owner, or person claiming an interest in the vehicle may pay the department the amount of the lien, plus costs. In that event, the seizure or sale shall not be held and the vehicle, if seized, shall be returned by the department to the person entitled to its possession. This payment shall not constitute a waiver of the right to a hearing.

(f) When the department or an authorized agent has reasonable cause to believe that the lien may be jeopardized within the 10-day notice-of-intent period, the vehicle may be seized without prior notice to the registered or legal owner, upon obtaining authorization for the seizure from the Registrar of Vehicles or authorized representative. In all those cases, a notice of the lien and the intent to sell the vehicle shall be given by the department to the legal and registered owner, and to any other person known to be claiming an interest in the vehicle, within 48 hours after seizure excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays specified in Section 6700 of the Government Code. Any hearing to contest the lien and the seizure shall be requested within 10 days following transmittal of that notice.

(g) When a lien exists against one or more vehicles owned by the same person or persons, the department may seize and sell a sufficient number of the vehicles to pay the lien, plus costs, on one or more of the vehicles in accordance with subdivision (a).

(h) The Department of the California Highway Patrol shall assist with the seizure and impounding of the vehicle. Any municipality or county law enforcement agency may assist with the seizure and impounding of the vehicle.

(i) Any property found by the department in any vehicle seized under the provisions of this article shall be handled by the department in the same manner as is provided in Sections 2414 and 2415.

(Amended by Stats. 1994, Ch. 1211, Sec. 3. Effective September 30, 1994.)

9802.
  

(a) The Registrar of Vehicles or authorized representative shall conduct the sale in the same manner as provided by law for the seizure and sale of personal property by the assessor for the collection of taxes due on personal property.

(b) The department may bid for the vehicle an amount equal to the lien held by the department for registration, transfer, and license fees, use taxes, parking penalties, and any interest, penalties, and costs added thereto. In all cases where the vehicle becomes the property of the department, it shall be reduced to junk and sold.

(c) The proceeds of any sale shall be allocated by the department for the following purposes and in the following order:

(1) Costs incurred by the department.

(2) Registration and transfer fees and any penalty added thereto.

(3) License fees and any penalty added thereto.

(4) Use taxes and any interest or penalty added thereto.

(5) Perfected mechanics’ liens.

(6) Perfected security interests.

(7) Penalties for offenses relating to the standing or parking of a vehicle and any administrative service fee added thereto. Any other court-induced liability, and any administrative service fee added thereto, which is subject to collection by the department.

(8) All other fees due the department.

(9) Any remainder to the person whose claim of interest in the vehicle is approved by the department.

(d) Notwithstanding Section 42270, the proceeds of a sale allocated pursuant to paragraphs (4) to (9), inclusive, of subdivision (c) shall not be transmitted to the Treasurer for deposit in the Motor Vehicle Account in the State Transportation Fund.

(e) The department shall transmit to the State Board of Equalization all use taxes, interest, and penalties collected under this article within 60 days after receipt thereof in the form which may be prescribed and approved jointly by the department and the board.

(Amended by Stats. 1992, Ch. 1199, Sec. 11.5. Effective September 30, 1992.)

9803.
  

Nothing in this code prevents a review or other action as may be permitted by the Constitution and laws of this state by a court of competent jurisdiction of any order of the department to seize and sell a vehicle.

(Added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1212, Sec. 2.)

9804.
  

(a) Any action brought in a court of competent jurisdiction to review any order of the department to seize and sell a vehicle shall be commenced within 90 days from the date notice is given of the order.

(b) Upon final completion of all administrative appeals, the department shall give written notice to the owner of a vehicle ordered for seizure and sale of his or her right to a review of the order by a court pursuant to subdivision (a).

(Added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1212, Sec. 3.)

9805.
  

(a) The department may file in the office of the Clerk of the Superior Court of Sacramento County, or any other county, a certificate specifying the amount of any fee, tax, penalty, and collection cost due, the name and last known address of the individual, company, or corporation liable for the amount due, and the fact that the department has complied with all the provisions of this division in the computation of the amount due, and a request that judgment be entered against the individual, company, or corporation in the amount of the fee, tax, penalty, and collection cost set forth in the certificate if the fee, tax, penalty, or collection cost constitutes either of the following:

(1) A lien under this division on the vehicle on which it is due is not paid when due, and there is evidence that the vehicle has been operated in violation of this code or any regulations adopted pursuant to this code.

(2) A lessee liability as provided in Section 10879 of the Revenue and Taxation Code.

(b) Prior to the filing of the certificate, the department shall, by mail, notify the individual, company, or corporation of the amount which is due and of the opportunity for a hearing as provided in this subdivision. At the request of the individual, company, or corporation, the department shall conduct a hearing pursuant to Section 9801, at which it shall be determined whether the claimed fee, tax, penalty, or collection cost in the amount claimed by the department is due and constitutes a lien on the vehicle, and whether the individual, company, or corporation is liable therefor.

(c) If no hearing is requested within 15 days after mailing the notice required by subdivision (b), the certificate required by subdivision (b) may be filed.

(Amended by Stats. 2002, Ch. 784, Sec. 593. Effective January 1, 2003.)

9806.
  

The clerk of the court, immediately upon the filing of the certificate specified in Section 9805, shall enter a judgment for the people of the State of California against the individual, company, or corporation in the amount of any fee, tax, penalty, and collection cost set forth in the certificate. The clerk may file the judgment in a looseleaf book entitled “Department of Motor Vehicles Registration Judgments.”

(Amended by Stats. 2002, Ch. 784, Sec. 594. Effective January 1, 2003.)

9808.
  

Execution shall issue upon the judgment specified in Section 9806 upon request of the department in the same manner as execution may issue upon other judgments, and sales shall be held under the execution as prescribed in the Code of Civil Procedure, except that attachment may not issue against any real property.

(Added by Stats. 1990, Ch. 676, Sec. 4.)

VEHVehicle Code - VEH6