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(A) When the police do not know the identity of the registered owner or other person legally entitled to possession of the towed or impounded vehicle, they will cause the vehicle registration records of the State of Illinois to be searched by the secretary of state for the purpose of obtaining the required ownership information.
(B) The police authorizing the impounding of a vehicle will cause the stolen motor vehicle files of the state police to be searched by a directed communication to the state police for stolen or wanted information on the vehicle. When the state police files are searched with negative results, the information contained in the National Crime Information Center files will be searched by the state police. The information determined from these record searches will be returned to the requesting law enforcement agency for that agency's use in sending a notification by certified mail to the registered owner, lienholder, and other legally entitled persons advising where the vehicle is held, requesting a disposition be made, and setting forth public sale information. Notification shall be sent no later than ten business days after the date the police impound or authorize the impounding of a vehicle, provided that if the police are unable to determine the identity of the registered owner, lienholder, or other person legally entitled to the ownership of the impounded vehicle within a ten business day period after impoundment, then notification shall be sent no later than two days after the date the identity of the registered owner, lienholder, or other person legally entitled to ownership of the impounded vehicle is determined. Exceptions to a notification by certified mail to the registered owner, lienholder, and other legally entitled persons are set forth in ILCS Ch. 625, Act 5, § 4-209.
(C) (1) When ownership information is needed for a towing service to give notification as required in this chapter, the towing service may cause the vehicle registration records of the state to be searched by the secretary of state, and in such case, the towing service also shall give notice to all lienholders of record within the time period required for such other notices.
(2) The written request of a towing service, in the form and containing the information prescribed by the secretary of state by rule may be transmitted to the secretary of state in person, by U.S. mail or other delivery service, by facsimile transmission, or by other means the secretary of state deems acceptable.
(3) The secretary of state shall provide the required information, or a statement that the information was not found in the vehicle registration records of the state, by U.S. mail or other delivery service, facsimile transmission, as requested by the towing service, or by other means acceptable to the secretary of state.
(D) The secretary of state may prescribe standards and procedures for submission of requests for record searches and replies via computer link.
(E) Fees for services provided under this section shall be in amounts prescribed by the secretary of state under ILCS Ch. 625, Act 5, § 3-821.1. Payment may be made by the towing service using cash, any commonly accepted credit card, or any other means of payment deemed acceptable by the secretary of state.
(ILCS Ch. 625, Act 5, § 4-205) (Ord. 6461, passed 5-10-77; amend. Ord. 7208, passed 9-23-86)