Abandoned or Inoperable Vehicles

Beautify Your Neighborhood - Get Rid of Abandoned or Inoperable Vehicles

abandoned vehicleThere are several abandoned or inoperable vehicles in yards across Paducah.  In addition to being neighborhood concerns, these vehicles can damage the environment. The City of Paducah encourages neighborhood beautification with information on how to get rid of a vehicle.  Plus, you might put a little CASH in your pocket.

For abandoned or inoperable vehicles that are not properly stored, Paducah Code of Ordinances Section 42-28 outlines the City’s process in removing the vehicle.  

Once the vehicle you no longer need is gone, CELEBRATE! You cleared an area of your yard, made your neighborhood more beautiful, and protected the environment.  If you have a question, call the Paducah Fire Prevention Division, 270-444-8522.

Abandoned or Inoperable Vehicle Informational Flyer

Frequently Asked Questions

How are abandoned or inoperable vehicles defined? An apparently abandoned vehicle is defined as one that hasn’t been moved or maintained for at least 60 days.  An apparently inoperable vehicle is not capable of moving on its own power or doesn’t comply with legal requirements to operate on public streets.  

What are some options if I have a vehicle and want to get rid of it? Sometimes, a junk yard or salvage company will purchase your vehicle and tow it away.  However, some junk yards and salvage companies may charge a fee for vehicle removal.  Another option is to contact a charity.  Some charities will haul your vehicle for free and provide a receipt for a tax donation.  The funds the charity receives from selling or scrapping your vehicle helps the charity continue its mission. Here are a few charities and local companies that may be able to help you properly dispose of your vehicle.  

What do I need to know about my vehicle before donating or scrapping it? The company you contact may ask a variety of questions.  Make sure you can answer most (if not all) of the following questions:   

  • What is the year, make, and model of the vehicle?  What is its mileage?
  • What is its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN – found on registration or base of windshield)?
  • What is the vehicle’s condition exterior, interior, and mechanical conditions?
  • Is it in running condition?  Is it in towable condition?
  • Does it have all four tires and wheels?  Are the tires flat?  Do you have the keys?
  • Do you have a clean title?

Your Vehicle’s Title:  In most cases, a valid title in your name is needed to transfer ownership of your vehicle to a salvage yard or charity.  If you lost the vehicle’s title, contact the McCracken County Clerk’s Office (270-444-4700) to apply for a duplicate title.  Also, if you are planning to scrap your vehicle, contact the County Clerk’s Office to apply for a junk title.  This will remove it from State databases.  

What happens if I still owe money on the vehicle? If you still owe money for the vehicle to an entity such as a bank, credit union, finance company, or the County government, it gets complicated. If there is a financial entity listed along with your name on the title, there is a lien on the vehicle. Both you and the lienholder own the car until the balance is paid off. When you pay off the balance, you become the sole owner of the vehicle. Once it is yours, you are free to sell it.

What should I do before my vehicle gets towed or removed?  

  • Check for personal belongings including any documents, CDs, or DVDs.  Look in the glove compartment, door pockets, consoles, sun visor area, trunk or cargo area, and under the seats and floor mats.
  • Once the vehicle is no longer yours, make sure to cancel your insurance policy.
  • Remove the license plate before you sell or tow it.  Return the license plate to the McCracken County Clerk’s Office. 

What if I have a vehicle that I’m not ready to sell or scrap? How can I store it on my property? You may store an inoperable vehicle in your enclosed garage or building.  The vehicle should NOT be in the open where it could be viewed from a public street or from an adjoining property. This also applies to classic or collector vehicles.

What happens if I don’t get rid of my abandoned or inoperable vehicle? According to Chapter 42-48 of Paducah’s Code of Ordinances, if a property owner removes an abandoned or inoperable vehicle within 30 days of receiving a violation notice, then there is no fine or further action.  If the property owner does NOT remove the vehicle within 60 days, then the vehicle in violation will be considered a nuisance and subject to being towed at the owner’s expense along with a $100 fine.