She Should Have Taken Public Transit? Most Expensive Airport Parking. Ever.

$105,000 in parking fines for a car left at O’Hare for three years.

Chicago’s Department of Finance states Jennifer Fitzgerald owes the money for 678 parking fines after a 1999 Chevrolet Monte Carlo registered in her name was left at the city’s O’Hara Airport…

Yet Ms Fitzgerald claims she has never owned or driven the car and that her ex-boyfriend Brandon Preveau, a United Airlines employee, registered it in her name without her knowledge. She said he parked the car at the airport in Parking Lot E, which is reserved for United employees, in November 2009

Apparently the car should have been towed after 30 days. But it was three years before it was impounded, and just kept racking up fines in the interim.

Since the registered owner of the vehicle is unemployed, it’s unlikely that the fines will be collected I imagine.

(HT: rwoman on Milepoint)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. She is suing Chicago and United. Chicago because they should’ve towed the car to an impound lot after 90 days and United because they were supposed to tow it to an semi-impound lot on airport grounds. I don’t get the United part because it was operated by Standard Parking, United just leased some spots.

  2. IANAL, but it seems that payment of the fines should be linked to possession of the vehicle. If she doesn’t want the vehicle, because her defense is that it wasn’t really hers to begin with, then she shouldn’t have to pay the fine. The city could have impounded the vehicle and sold it to the cover the fines long ago.

  3. Failure to follow the law! she should sue the city for failure to follow proceedure to have the car towed, auctioned off in the correct amount of time. Then she need to sue the State for registering a vehicle under her name with permission.

    It is nice when your own City & state F it up then give you a bill for their mistakes.

  4. Hold on y’all who think failure to tow within 30 days provides a defense. Failure to follow a policy provides the basis for a claim or a defense only if it is clear that the person relying on the failure was an intended beneficiary of the policy in the first instance. I don’t see her making a strong case on that basis.

  5. The failure to tow by now following procedures limits the automobile owner’s liablity to 30 days. The city can not impose an indefinite time to keep a vehicle to rack up fees due to their own incompetence.

    In income tax law there are Failure to File penalitie for not filing your return on time but it is limted to a maximum Percent of the total tax.

  6. The Airport and City are dumb. If the car was there for 3 years, what is the big deal? Obviously it was, otherwise it would have been moved sooner. That is like me leaving my car out on an open farm in Iowa that isn’t being farmed on. Big whoop. That is a made up value that they are claiming she owes.

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