Frequently Asked Questions
On this page:
Changes to a License
1. How do I request a duplicate license for a Tow Operator or VSF Employee?
You may order a duplicate license online. The fee is $25.
2. How do I change my address or phone number?
Tow Companies: From your TOOLS page, select 'Update Form' from the blue menu on the left side of the screen, and click 'Change Address'. There is a $25 processing fee for this service. You may change your address during renewals for no charge.
Tow Operator or VSF Employee: You can update your address and other personal information online at any time, during your renewal period, or you may send us the information by mail, fax, or email:
Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
P.O. Box 12157
Austin, TX 78711-2157
If you mail in your changes, please include your TDLR license or permit number, previous address and new address, name of the person making the request, and a daytime phone number where we can reach you.
Vehicle Storage Facility: A Vehicle Storage Facility cannot change their physical address. Any change of location requires a new license. To change the mailing address only: from your TOOLS page, select 'Update Form' from the blue menu on the left side of the screen, then click 'Change Address'. There is a $25 processing fee for this service. You may change your mailing address during renewals for no charge.
3. How do I delete a vehicle from my tow company certificate?
To delete a vehicle, you must complete form TOW005, Tow Truck Add, Delete, and Change form. You may submit the form by fax, email, or regular mail. The form must be signed by a controlling person(s) on file with the Department.
Procedure for customer that wants to add a vehicle registered to someone else:
Send in a written statement with the following info:
- Requestors certificate number
- Date of Purchase
- Complete info of the vehicle (vin #, year, make)
- Signature of the owner/controlling person listed in TOOLS
4. How do I add a truck I purchased that is currently still registered to another company?
Send in a written statement with the following info:
- Requestor certificate number
- Date of Purchase
- Complete info of vehicle (vin,#, year, make)
- Signature of the owner/controlling person listed in Tools
Pre-Arranged Consent Tows
1. I heard that I no longer need my consent tow license or permit to do a consent tow, is that true?
No, that is not true. If you perform any tows (even just one) that are called in or requested by the owner or operator of the vehicle or by a person who has possession, custody, or control of the vehicle you still need a consent tow operator’s license and the truck must be permitted as a consent tow truck.
2. Did the towing law change to no longer require a consent tow license or permit?
No, the law did not change for consent tow operators or consent tow trucks. However, the law recognizes that vehicles used only to transport motor vehicles as cargo in the course of prearranged shipping transaction are not defined as tow trucks.
3. What is the difference between a consent tow and a prearranged shipping transaction?
If the transport is arranged by a company for shipping or delivery to another company (a commercial transaction) and those are the only type of transports performed by that truck, it’s more likely than not exempt from the definition of a tow truck. If you perform any tows that are called in or requested by the owner or operator of the vehicle or by a person who has possession, custody, or control of the vehicle you still need a consent tow operator’s license and the truck must be permitted as a consent tow truck.
4. Before the law changed, I used my tow truck to perform consent tows; now that the law has changed, can I drop my consent tow license and start using the truck to do prearranged shipping transactions?
No. If the tow truck was used to perform a single consent after September 1, 2015 (the effective date of the change in law) the truck must have a consent tow permit.
Tow Boot Company Practices
1. I am a towing company. Can I install the signs prohibiting unauthorized vehicles required by Section 2308.301?
Yes. The Texas Towing and Booting Act states a parking facility owner may not receive financial gain from a towing or booting company. However, the signs prohibiting unauthorized vehicles are not considered a financial gain.
Unauthorized Vehicles on Homeowners' Property
1. Can a homeowner who charges a parking fee have a vehicle towed that is parked illegally?
If the homeowner posts signs that meet the requirements of Sec. 2308.252, then yes, the homeowner may have an unauthorized vehicle towed from the home without notifying law enforcement.
2. I do not charge for parking in my driveway, but someone parked in it without my permission. Can I have them towed or do I have to call the police?
If a homeowner does not charge to park vehicles on his or her property, then yes, under state law an unauthorized vehicle may be towed from the property without having posted 'no parking' signs. However, since some cities also regulate the towing of vehicles, you should also check with local authorities.
Licensing Dual Tow Operators
1. My Dual Tow Operator License expires after 9/1/17, is it still valid?
Yes, your current Dual Tow Operator’s license will remain valid until it expires.
2. Can I renew my Dual Tow Operator license?
No. After September 1, 2017, you will choose which license, Tow Operator or VSF Employee, you want to keep at the time of your renewal. You do not need a VSF employee license to work at a vehicle storage facility if you hold a valid tow operator license.
3. How much will it cost to renew my license?
The fee is $100 if you renew on or before your expiration date.
4. Who needs to apply for a VSF employee license?
Anyone that works at a vehicle storage facility and who is not a licensed tow operator with TDLR.
1. Can universities request a tow of vehicles before or during on-campus activities?
Yes. As of September 1, 2017, state law provides that universities may tow vehicles from a university parking facility to another location on the university’s campus in preparation for special events. “Special events” are university sanctioned, on-campus activities, including parking lot maintenance.
2. Who is considered a “university”?
A “university” is a public senior college or institution or a private or independent institution of higher learning.
3. Is the University required to give notice before relocating vehicles due to a special event?
Yes. Signs that a special event is occurring must be posted at least 72 hours before the event and must remain posted for 48 hours after the conclusion of the event. The signs are required to be:
- Made of weather-resistant material;
- At least 18 inches wide and 24 inches tall;
- Mounted on a pole, post, or wall, or a free-standing board;
- Installed so that the bottom edge of the sign is no lower than two feet and no higher than six feet above the ground.
4. What information is required to be on a special event sign?
The signs must describe the nature of the special event; the date(s) and hours of towing enforcement; and list a phone number, including an area code, that is answered 24 hours a day.
5. Where must special event signs be posted?
The signs must be posted on the left or right side of all vehicle entrances, including an entry from an alley or. posted every 25 feet if there is no defined entrance and the width of the entrance exceeds 35 feet.
6. If my vehicle is towed because of a special event, how do I get it back?
You must call the number on the sign and request release. The signs are required to remain posted for 48 hours after the conclusion of the event
7. Is the university required to send me notice once my vehicle is towed?
No. However, the university is required to notify you of your right to a tow hearing.
8. Are there any requirements on the university when releasing my vehicle?
Yes. The university must make personnel available to release your vehicle within 2 hours after you request it and make personnel available to accept any payment required for the release..
9. How much can the university charge for relocation of vehicles?
The university can charge up to 75% of the private property tow fee set under Occ. Code §2308.0575. The maximum they can charge would be $191.25.
10. What happens if I don’t pick up my vehicle after it was relocated?
If you do not pick your vehicle within 48 hours after it is relocated, the university may tow the vehicle to another location on its campus without further expense to you.