Unlicenced Drivers and Vehicle Impounds
Taking your neighbour's request at face value turned out to be an expensive lesson for Jessica. She had loaned her vehicle to a neighbour and somewhere along the journey the neighbour met up with the police. The neighbour was a vehicle impound candidate because they didn't have a valid driver's license and Jessica was now faced with making an application to the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles to attempt to have her vehicle returned to her before the end of the impoundment period. The neighbour was well aware that they were unlicensed because vehicle impoundment does not occur until after the person is convicted of driving without a driver's license and they don't bother to renew.
The officer who stopped the driver was left without a choice because the legislation requires that the impoundment take place. Discretion may be exercised by the Superintendent who can decide to return the vehicle to the owner before the end of the impoundment period. Stolen vehicles, errors by police or ICBC regarding a driver's status as an impound candidate, or the exercise of due diligence by the owner in loaning the vehicle may be considered.
In order to trigger a review, Jessica will be required to pay a fee and complete a document explaining her reasoning. Being shown what appears to be a valid driver's license may not be enough peace of mind. Many prohibited drivers fail to turn in their licenses as the law requires.
Unless you are absolutely certain of the driver's status, it is not a good practice to loan your vehicle.