Gov. Pritzker signs legislation protecting auto accident victims from rogue towing companies

CHICAGO (CBS) – Gov. JB Pritzker on Friday signed legislation that will give drivers greater protection from unscrupulous towing companies.

The legislation was an amendment to the Illinois House Bill 3124. It calls for a “tow rotation list,” in which essentially, police agencies will call an approved list of tow companies whenever there’s an accident.

If a random tow driver pulls up on the scene and was not requested by the owner of the car or officer, they will not be authorized to tow the vehicle.

The legislation requires any towing service working within the jurisdiction of a given police agency to submit an application for inclusion on that police agency’s tow rotation list.

Two divers will also need to go through background checks, insurance, and licensing.

This was a direct result of the CBS 2 investigators’ reporting on the issue.

For years, the CBS 2 Investigators have exposed how private tow companies would deliberately hold vehicles. We uncovered in six months how one tow company racked up $ 150,000 with just 54 invoices.

Daniel Cohen had a run-in with one of those companies after a car accident in 2019 in Chicago.

While on the phone with his insurance company and taking to the police, he recalled, “all of a sudden, a tow company pulled up.”

The driver from Get It Towing Inc. gave Cohen a business card with the logos of auto insurance companies whose insurance they accepted.

“(They) said they were here to pick up the car, take it to its destination – and then in the process, it never reached its destination,” Cohen said.

Instead, Cohen spent countless hours calling and looking for his car, and when he finally located it, there was new trouble. The tow company slapped Cohen with an invoice not only for the two, but for a hefty fee for storage. He said it was to the tune of close to $ 5,000.

Cohen told CBS 2 Investigator Dorothy Tucker in September 2019, “These people are some scammers.”

Lisa Young also turned to CBS 2 Investigator Dorothy Tucker after running into a hassle with a rogue tow truck driver in 2019.

Young’s car was towed after a wreck. She searched for it for days, and even filed a police report.

When she found her car, her insurance company had to pay $ 2,900 to get it back.

And after our investigations, lawmakers finally took action.


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