Q&A - Are Parking Boots Legal in BC?

no parking signHello, I don't know if this is the correct place to find this out, or perhaps you could suggest where I could turn, but are parking boots legal in BC? I work for a BC college and we are constantly battling improper parking and as a small campus we do not charge for parking and thus have no enforcement. A suggestion was to buy and start using a parking boot for cars parked illegally or in an unsafe manner. Where could I find out if this is a legal practice in BC?



Since this is not normally something that I would have dealt with in traffic policing, my answer here is not definitive.

I did a bit of poking around on the internet and came up with a security business in Vancouver whose web site shows boots or wheel clamps in use, so my reaction is that yes, in the proper circumstances, these may be used legally here in BC. I am guessing that these are used as part of a contract for the use of private property in order to park a vehicle. Failure to comply with the contract, ie: parking in the wrong spot or failing to pay for parking, would be grounds to apply the boot and extract the penalty specified in the contract to have the clamp removed. You would want to discuss this with a lawyer to be certain of the contract and it's application.

Cultus Lake appears to be using these devices for parking violations in one of their parks.

The Motor Vehicle Act does give you some authorities as the owner of private property in relation to parked vehicles:

Parking on private property

192 (1) If a motor vehicle or trailer is left without the occupier's consent on private property in a municipality or treaty lands or for a period exceeding 72 hours on private property not in a municipality or treaty lands, the owner of the motor vehicle or trailer is deemed to have authorized and empowered the occupier to be the owner's agent for the purpose of towing it to a place of storage and of storing it.

(2) The agent has a lien against the motor vehicle or trailer for all reasonable advances made or charges incurred in connection with the towing and storing of it in the course of the agency.

(3) The procedure respecting enforcement of the lien must be governed by the Warehouse Lien Act.

So, for the areas on campus that are considered to be private property, which may be all of it, including the roads, it might be simpler just to have the offenders removed by tow truck.

My final thought is to contact other universities and colleges in the province and see how they deal with the situation. Finding out what their standard practices are may make the decisions involved easier for you.

From @erikmagracken via Twitter

This power is granted to institutions described in Section 3 of the University Act:

Continuation of universities

3 (1) The following corporations continue to be universities in British Columbia:

(a) The University of British Columbia;

(b) University of Victoria;

(c) Simon Fraser University;

(d) University of Northern British Columbia.

(1.1) An institution that is designated as a special purpose, teaching university by the Lieutenant Governor in Council under section 71 (3) (a) is continued as a university in British Columbia.

(2) Each university is composed of a chancellor, a convocation, a board, a senate and faculties.

(2.1) Despite subsection (2), the University of British Columbia is composed of a chancellor, a convocation, a board, an Okanagan senate, a Vancouver senate, a council and faculties.

(3) Each university continues as a corporation.

(4) The Business Corporations Act does not apply to a university, but on the recommendation of the minister, the Minister of Finance, by regulation, may declare that all or part of that Act applies to a university.

Powers of board

27 (1) The management, administration and control of the property, revenue, business and affairs of the university are vested in the board.

(2) Without limiting subsection (1) or the general powers conferred on the board by this Act, the board has the following powers:

(t.2) for the purposes of paragraphs (t) and (t.1), to provide for the removal, immobilization or impounding, and recovery, of any property associated with a contravention of a rule or other instrument made in the exercise of a power under this section;

Parking at Marina


We run a Boat Harbour on the coast, which has a parking lot, requiring payment.  Recently it was decided to purchase a wheel boot to install on vehicles who have failed to pay or are parked in a no parking area.  Are there regulations in place that would help define policies on what length of time a vehicle should be parked illegally before we can take action?

That's Up to You

Your parking lot is private property, and people using it would be agreeing to your contract for the privilege when they park there.

It's up to you to set the parameters of the contract and notify those who will have to agree to it.

Since this is civil law, it is not something that I have any experience in. You would need to discuss it with a lawyer for the best advice.

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