How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Joseph Your Own Question

Joseph
Joseph, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 7279
Experience:  I have 15 years experience in the legal field, currently specializing in criminal and family law
18539850
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Joseph is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Handicap Parking and Discrimination

Customer Question

My car was towed from a handicap spot in my apartment complex because I forgot to place my plaque on the dash. The management is aware of my disability, and in fact my doctor had requested that my parking be reassigned to a spot closer to my apartment PRIOR to the tow. The management signed to have my vehicle towed even though they were fully aware of my handicap status, and I have since received a notice on my doctors request to move my parking stating that I must sign the form with states that I relinquish any rights to legal actions from previous acts, and release the complex and management from any liability. Since the tow, I have had my vehicle checked out on numerous occasions by the "Tow Company" that patrols the complex. Here is the kicker... The management continues to park their "Golf Carts" across the handicap ramps, in handicap spaces and red zones, but they are never towed? The gates have signs that ONLY read, unauthorized vehicles will be towed, and nothing on entry gates or handicap spaces that states plaque required. Isn't that necessary under the law? When they towed my vehicle I was not able to work, and I only paid on days I actually work. I was to earn $200 for that night, and thus now I can't meet the entire rent. I paid the rent minus the $200 lost from being unable to work and they refused to take it. Now they are threatening me with eviction if I don't pay prior to the 11th, and I don't have the rent, PLUS the late fees and such they now want to charge me. I need help!! Riverside, County CA 92509
PS.. I have photos or the Golf Carts in the Handicap spaces, on SEVERAL dates, including TODAY! As well, I have photos of the gate signs and the parking spaces... of which NONE are Van Accessible.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

 

Hello and thanks for choosing Just Answer®. I am a licensed attorney, and I will be glad to try and assist you.

 

To provide you with accurate information, could you please clarify these points so I can best address your inquiry:

 

  • It's not clear from your information, was the spot from which your car was towed marked as a handicap spot?

 

 

Once I hear back from you, I will be glad to let you know my answer. There may be some delay as I am assisting other customers or am away from my computer. Please rest assured, however, that I will get back to you as soon as possible.

 

Thank you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Yes, the spot is makred handicaped with a blue sign and ground markings. The apartment complex attorney has sent me a letter stating that they have no obligation to notify me of the tow, and that they have a a "NO EXCEPTION" policy to the rule. However, as of today looking out my window I see the managements golf cart parked in the handicap spot! I can send photos of the spaces and the gate signs as well as the golf cart if you have an email address for me to send them too.
Thanks!
Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

Unfortunately, all the law requires is that the blue handicap sign be properly in place. If the spot is properly marked as handicapped, then any vehicle parked in that spot must be presently displaying the placard designating the vehicle as handicapped.

 

I completely understand your perspective; that being that everyone knows the car belongs to you and that you are handicapped, as such, they should have left the car. There is no doubt that this would have been a perfectly normal and acceptable thing for them to have done. Unfortunately, the law does not require this of them. The law merely states that the car must then be displaying the handicapped placard.

 

My only thought would be to attempt to calmly and politely explain the situation to the property manager. With this in mind, they might be agreeable to some very short-term payment plan to get fully caught up on the rent. Absent that, while they have been less than kind to you, they are within their rights to have acted as they did. Sorry.

 

I regret that my answer is unfavorable, but please understand that it would be unfair to you (and unprofessional of me) to provide you with anything less than a truthful response.

 

 

Also, several customers have asked how they may direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to assist you in your legal matter, just put "FOR JOSEPH" in the subject line and I will gladly pick up the question as soon as I am on-line.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Is it not Discrimination that they are requiring me to waive all legal action for them to relocate my parking as requested by my doctor. Further is it not Discrimination that they themselves utilize handicap spaces without legal right, but have mine towed knowing i have the proper credentials?
Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

Neither of these actions would meet the legal definition of discrimination. The legal definition of discrimination is to have an established practice which confers particular privileges on a class arbitrarily selected from a large number of persons, all of whom stand in the same relation to the privileges granted and between whom and those not favored no reasonable distinction can be found. This is not the case here.

 

In your situation, they are requiring you to waive certain rights for them to take a certain action. This is done all the time in any number of negotiated actions and is completely legal.

 

As I stated earlier, I find their actions less than appropriate and less than honorable, but that does not make them contrary to law.

 

 

Also, several customers have asked how they may direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to assist you in your legal matter, just put "FOR JOSEPH" in the subject line and I will gladly pick up the question as soon as I am on-line.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Have you looked at the riverside county handicap sign posting requirements for apartment complexes at each entrance. Does not a stricter county ord. Apply over a lesser state requirement?
Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

How is it that you think a "stricter" county code helps you? If anything, a stricter code as to handicapped parking would seem to work to your detriment. Please explain.

 

Thank you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Unless i read it wrong the county requirement with regard to towing ang properly worded sineage for such requirements is not in place as i see it. Riverside counyt municipal code 10.20.130 section C. Is that not required since the complex is considered private parking and off street?
Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.
So you're suggesting that the sign did not meet the county code to permit the towing of the vehicle? Is this correct?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Yes.. I have photos of the sign.
Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

Riverside County Municipal Code has no section 10.20.130. Section 10.20 deals with the regulation of speed and only goes to 10.20.040. Can you provide the correct section number?

 

Thank you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
http://devlibrary.municode.com/HTML/16320/level2/TIT10VETR_CH10.20PA.html

This link is correct... had to get to the computer.
Here is the text:

10.20.130 - Spaces marked for handicapped parking.

A.

The board of supervisors may, by resolution, designate parking spaces for the exclusive use of vehicles which display a distinguishing license plate or a placard issued pursuant to Sections 22511.55 and 22511.59 or 5007 of the California Vehicle Code. If the designated space is to be on a county highway, it shall be reviewed to determine if there is sufficient space for a disabled person to enter and exit the vehicle safely and if a viable path is available (including wheelchair ramps) from the designated parking space. Whenever a parking space is so designated, it shall be indicated by blue paint on the curb or edge of the paved portion of the street adjacent to the space, and may also be indicated by signs or other suitable means.

B.

The board of supervisors may, by resolution, designate stalls or spaces in an off-street parking facility owned or operated by the county for the exclusive use of vehicles which display a distinguishing license plate or placard issued pursuant to Sections 22511.55 and 22511.59 or 5007 of the California Vehicle Code.

C.

The owner or person in lawful possession of an off-street parking facility, after notifying the sheriff's department, and the county owning or operating an off-street parking facility, may cause the removal from a stall or space designated for physically handicapped persons in such facility to the nearest public garage, which regularly accepts towed vehicles, of any vehicle not displaying one of the distinguishing placards or license plates specified in this section if there is posted immediately adjacent to, and visible from such stall or space, or, if there is posted, in a conspicuous place at each entrance to the off-street parking facility, not less than seventeen (17) by twenty-two (22) inches in size with lettering not less than one inch in height, a sign which clearly and conspicuously states the following:

 "Unauthorized vehicles not displaying distinguishing placards or license plates issued for physically handicapped persons will be towed away at owner's expense. Towed vehicles may be reclaimed at ____________ (address), or by telephoning ____________ (law enforcement phone)."

D.

No person shall park or leave standing any vehicle in a stall or space designated for disabled persons and disabled veterans, unless the vehicle displays a distinguishing license plate or placard issued pursuant to California Vehicle Code Section 5007 or Vehicle Code Section(s) 22511.55 or 22511.59.

E.

All fines imposed for violations of subsection D of this section shall be in accordance with California Vehicle Code Section 42001.5. The provisions of this section may be administered and enforced by the director of building and safety and his or her designees, pursuant to Vehicle Code Section 22507.9.

Expert:  Joseph replied 3 years ago.

You have not yet stated how the sign did not meet the requirements of the code. Additionally, in response to my earlier question about whether the spot was marked, you made no mention of any improper signage. So, unless you provide additional information, I am still assuming that the signage was appropriate.

 

I would also point out that, even if the signage is improper, this would still not amount to discrimination. At the worst, it indicates that the complex violated the law as to the towing of the vehicle potentially entitling you to seek reimbursement for the fees.

 

As to that, there is a compelling argument of ambiguity in the language of the ordinance. While the section you cited does call for signage, it does so only for an "off-street parking facility". In trying to determine if an apartment complex constitutes an "off-street parking complex", I tried to locate a definition for the phrase. Unfortunately, it does not appear that either the county ordinance or the state statute provides a definition. Meaning, we don't have clear direction as to whether the apartment complex needs to comply with this ordinance.

 

 

Also, several customers have asked how they may direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to assist you in your legal matter, just put "FOR JOSEPH" in the subject line and I will gladly pick up the question as soon as I am on-line.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8436
    JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8436
    JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    19941
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    8189
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/jespoag/2008-12-17_222355_jessepic.jpg JPEsq's Avatar

    JPEsq

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    2132
    Experience as general attorney, in house counsel, SSDI, Family Law attorney, and law professor
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/gsenmartin/2008-04-22_214950_me1.jpg Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.'s Avatar

    Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    110
    7+ years of experience handling various legal matters.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PA/PaulmoJD/2013-10-10_195858_JAImage.64x64.jpg Law Educator, Esq.'s Avatar

    Law Educator, Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    31621
    JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    15975
    Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Lawyer
Joseph
Joseph
3209 Satisfied Customers
I have 15 years experience in the legal field, currently specializing in criminal and family law