Deloitte: Poland enters the phase of economic expansion

The divergence of economic moods in Poland...

Two Years On: War in Ukraine and Its Global Impact

On February 24, 2022, a full-scale Russian...

Confiscated cars from drunk drivers – answers to the most important questions

LAWConfiscated cars from drunk drivers - answers to the most important questions

As of March 14, 2024, new regulations will come into effect allowing the confiscation of cars from intoxicated drivers. Consequently, several questions are being raised about who and when a driver could lose their car, as well as the procedures in situations involving leased or rented vehicles and in the event of an accident.

Who and when will lose their car?

The forfeiture of a motor vehicle will be imposed if the driver is under the influence of alcohol and the alcohol content in their body is higher than 0.75 mg/dm3 in exhaled air or 1.5 per mille in blood. In the case of a driver who has caused an accident, the court may order the forfeiture of the motor vehicle if the alcohol content in their body is less than 0.50 mg/dm3 in exhaled air or 1 per mille in blood, however, if these values are exceeded, the court will rule such a forfeiture. [Gabriel Gatner, lawyer, creator of the website jazdapopijaku.pl]

What is the procedure in the case of professional drivers?

According to article 44b § 3 of the penal code, the forfeiture of a motor vehicle, or the equivalent value, is not ordered if the perpetrator was driving a vehicle that was not their own property while performing professional or official duties on behalf of the employer. In such a case, the court will order a compensation of at least 5000 zloty to be paid to the Victim Assistance Fund and Post-Penitentiary Aid. The upper limit of the compensation is 100,000 zloty (as per article 48 of the penal code). Therefore, the driver must meet two conditions – the vehicle cannot belong to them and they must be performing professional or official duties for their employer while driving the vehicle. In the case of couriers, much will depend on the legal basis governing their duties and what their responsibilities are, as detailed in their contract. [Gabriel Gatner, lawyer, creator of the jazdapopijaku.pl]

What about those driving leased or rented cars while under the influence of alcohol?

According to Art. 44b § 2 of the penal code – forfeiture of the equivalent value of the motor vehicle will be ruled in such cases. The equivalent of the vehicle’s value is considered the vehicle’s value as specified in the insurance policy for the year the offense was committed, or if there is no policy – the average market value of the vehicle which matches the make, model, production year, body type, type of drive and engine, engine capacity or power, alongside the approximate mileage, which was driven by the culprit, based on available data, without the need for expert opinion. [Gabriel Gatner, lawyer, creator of the jazdapopijaku.pl]

What happens if an intoxicated driver crashes the car they are driving?

According to Art. 44b § 5 of the penal code – forfeiture of the motor vehicle or the equivalent value is not ordered if the verdict of forfeiture of the motor vehicle is impossible or unsuitable due to its loss by the perpetrator, destruction, or significant damage. [Gabriel Gatner, lawyer, creator of the jazdapopijaku.pl]

Who and when will have to pay the compensation?

The compensation will be ordered only in cases indicated in Art. 44b § 3 of penal code, therefore in the case of drivers who have been driving a vehicle that doesn’t belong to them while performing professional or official duties on behalf of their employer. [Gabriel Gatner, lawyer, creator of the jazdapopijaku.pl]

Check out our other content
Related Articles
The Latest Articles