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Parked Trailer - no VIN number or license plate

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  • Parked Trailer - no VIN number or license plate

    In California.

    I had this customer contract in to park their truck bed style camper on a trailer. Since the camper is the truck bed style, it doesn't need to be registered with the DMV. The trailer it was on at move in was a legit trailer-with VIN number and license plate. I have a copy of that registration. That was 2 years ago, and they have been paying consistently up until the end of last year. They missed a month, and when I asked them about it they just stopped paying and pretty much ghosted us.

    Well now here's the hard part. Normally for parked trailers, we have to do the lien process through the DMV. BUT at some point, the tenant put the camper on a different trailer that is homemade, and doesn't have a VIN number or license plate on it. What would you do?

    So far we just started the lien process like we would on a storage unit, and then I guess we will auction it off like that once the time comes? Or should I just have it towed out because the trailer itself isn't supposed to be here? but the camper itself technically is allowed to be here???

    And yeah, Never letting anyone park a truck camper again... Lesson learned.

  • #2
    I am not a lawyer, what I would do could be entirely illegal and expose you to a lawsuit.

    Since the camper is not registered or otherwise licensed, it might as well be an old bookcase. If someone left me an old bookcase, I'm selling it and not feeling bad about it.

    If the trailer isn't supposed to be there and has no right to be there, then you can do whatever you want with it in my opinion. Someone has abandoned an unregistered and unlicensed pile of trash in what looks like something a person might possibly construe as a trailer on your property, where there should only be a bookcase.

    Sell it all.

    I would make sure I logged every attempt to reach the people, send certified letters with return receipts, log phone attempts, emails, etc. Take pictures and videos. In small claims, usually the side with the most paperwork wins.
    Last edited by Storman; 3 February 2023, 09:06 PM.
    In no way affiliated with Storman software.


    • #3
      Check with the California Self STorage Assoc.. My "opinion" is to have it towed.


      • #4
        So, to clarify, the truck bed camper doesn't have a vin/reg because it's not needed, since it pop's into the back of a registered vehicle, yes? And then the trailer is a home made one with no vin reg, just a metal frame on wheels? I'd send all of lien notices etc. and at the end of 71 days, sell it on Craigslist.
        "The comeback is always stronger than the setback."
        Mom, Navy Vet, genealogist and voracious reader
        Always sunny in California


        • #5
          I'm with Storman basically. What you have is trash that was left behind. BUT, to CYA go through the lien process. If it sells at auction great. If not, if you have in-person buyers, ask if anyone wants it for $5. Get rid of it however you can.
          Gina 6k

          VM: Four-Oh-Eight- Seven-Eight-Oh-Eight-Oh-Seven-Nine
          [email protected]

          You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough!
          I am not an attorney, just an experienced manager who is willing to share what I have learned. Your thoughts, practices or opinions may vary and neither of us may be right.


          • #6
            Got any pictures???

            Don't put off until tomorrow, what you can do today.


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