Rep. Harmsworth’s bill protecting vehicle owners passes the House

The House overwhelmingly passed a bill protecting individuals from the incorrect buyer's name being listed on a report of sale for an abandoned vehicle. Rep. Mark Harmsworth, R-Mill Creek, sponsored the legislation after a Washington state resident was assessed $1400 in fines and towing fees for a vehicle incorrectly listed in his name.
Harmsworth's legislation addresses a current loop-hole in Washington state vehicle transfer law that allows individuals to be unknowingly listed on a report of sale, or transfer, of a subsequently abandoned vehicle.

“This bill will ensure the vehicle reports of sale are being filed correctly,” said Harmsworth. “Protecting the purchaser, or any individual from being listed as the owner of a vehicle by a nefarious seller that is just trying to get rid of a car.”

Currently if a vehicle is abandoned and removed by law enforcement, the last registered owner on record is guilty of a traffic infraction of $550 and any associated towing fees. A properly filed sale or transfer of a vehicle relieves the last registered owner of liability.

House Bill 2274 passed the House with a 95-0 vote and is on its way to the Senate Transportation Committee for consideration.
Upload Flicker PhotosRep. Harmsworth speaks for House Bill 2274.


Washington State House Republican Communications