Sadly, the criminal justice system is not always perfect. Nowhere is this more clearly displayed than in New York City's car forfeiture policy. Under this policy, the city may take away your vehicle permanently if you are arrested on a charge of driving while intoxicated (DWI) or reckless driving.
Even if the accusation is not true and you win the criminal case, showing that you were not guilty of the DWI, you can still lose your car in a civil case that the city may bring against you. To make matters worse, you are still obligated to make any payments owed on the vehicle, regardless of whether you forfeit the car or not.
I am attorney Wilson LaFaurie, and my Brooklyn criminal defense firm is dedicated to defending the rights of individuals throughout New York who are facing charges of drunk driving and other offenses. A former prosecutor with 17 years of experience, I have handled thousands of criminal cases. I am here to put my deep knowledge of legal strategy to work for you.
Contesting the Seizure of Your Car in New York
The New York City Administrative Codestates that law enforcement is allowed to seize property that is shown to be the instrument of a crime. Thus, the reasoning goes, your car is the instrument behind a DWI. Without a car, that crime cannot be committed. However, even though the maximum fine allowed for a first-time DWI is $1,000, law enforcement may seize a car worth $50,000. This is not right.
However, a recent court decision gives car owners additional rights to contest the seizures of their vehicles. As your attorney, I can help you pursue all possible avenues for getting your car back while the criminal case is pending. The best way to do this is to show that the NYPD did not have the right to take the car. Perhaps you were not intoxicated at all or the car was the property of an "innocent third party."
Free Consultation With a Brooklyn DWI Forfeiture Attorney
To learn more about DWI car forfeiture laws in New York and how to fight for your vehicle, arrange a free initial consultation with a skilled DWI defense lawyer. Simply call the Law Offices of Wilson A. LaFaurie at (718) 215-9182, or fill out the contact form on this website. Credit cards are accepted. Hablamos Español.