The University of Washington: Facilities Services

Immobilization Program

Immobilization Program Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the Immobilization Program on the UW Seattle campus?

University of Washington Transportation Services is authorized to immobilize and/or impound any motorized vehicle due to non-payment of parking fines and other serous infractions of the UW parking rules in accordance with Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 478-116-351.

Vehicles with unpaid parking fines parked on the Seattle campus may be immobilized with a wheel-lock device, commonly known as a boot. Additional fees will be charged and must be fully paid prior to release. If fines remain unpaid and the vehicle is immobilized beyond three business days (excluding weekends and holidays), the vehicle may be impounded and removed from campus at the owner’s expense. Device releases cannot be performed outside of normal hours of operation).

2. Why is immobilization being implemented?

The immobilization program will provide a customer friendly and cost effective alternative to vehicle impoundment. The immobilized vehicle remains on campus rather than in an impound yard, Transportation Service is the only contact point for the customer and fees associated with immobilization are lower than those for impoundment. It also is expected to improve compliance with campus parking regulations.

3. When will the program start?

The Immobilization Program begins on February 4, 2013.

4. What can I do to prevent vehicle immobilization and/or impoundment?

Unpaid parking fines must be resolved as soon as possible. Any parking citation must be resolved within 20 calendar days by either appealing the citation or paying the fine in full.

5. How do I pay my citations?

Credit Card payment only

In Person

University Transportation Center (UTC)
3745 15th Ave. NE
Seattle, WA 98105
Monday – Friday 7:30 am – 5 pm
Cash and Credit Card payment
(Closed on university holidays)

By Mail

UW Transportation Services
3745 15th Ave. NE
Box 355360
Seattle, WA 98195-5360

Make check/money order payable to University of Washington (USD only) and include the citation notice with your payment. Do not send cash, use staples or tape.

6. If I don’t pay my citations, and my vehicle is immobilized, can I set up a payment plan to get my vehicle back?

No. Once a vehicle is immobilized beyond three business days (excluding weekends and holidays), the vehicle may be impounded and removed from campus at the owners expense. Device releases cannot be performed outside of normal hours of operation.

7. What is the immobilization fee?

This fee covers administrative processing.

8. How will I know that my vehicle is immobilized?

The wheel-lock device is brightly colored to ensure visibility. Typically a water-resistant notice will be affixed to the driver’s window and a copy will also be placed under the windshield wiper.

9. How will I get an immobilization device released from my vehicle?

Accounts can be settled Monday through Friday between 7:30 am and 4:30 pm at the Transportation Office. After office hours, between 4:30 and 8:30 pm Monday through Friday and on Saturday from 7 to 11:30 am, accounts may also be settled by calling Transportation Services at 206-685-1553. Upon confirmation of payment, removal of the immobilization device will occur generally within twenty minutes. The vehicle owner does not have to be present.

10. What about citations that were issued to the vehicle before I purchased it?

Transportation Services verifies current vehicle registration with the applicable state’s vehicle licensing agency prior to immobilization or impoundment. A vehicle will be released without charge if the owner on file with UW is determined not to be the registered owner and provides documentation of sale.

11. What if I attempt to move my vehicle and/or otherwise remove or damage the immobilization device?

Any attempts to move the vehicle while immobilized may result in serious damage to the vehicle. Any damage or vandalism to the immobilization device will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

12. What rights do I have to contest immobilization and/or impoundment of my vehicle?

Under WAC 478-116, any person seeking to redeem a motor vehicle that has been immobilized or impounded has the right to contest the validity of the immobilization or impoundment, the amount of the applicable booting, towing, and storage fees and shall have the motor vehicle released upon requesting a review and paying any outstanding fines, towing, and storage charges.