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Changes to impaired driving laws
Alberta’s impaired driving laws are changing effective December 1, 2020. A new Roadside Sanction program will keep our roads safer by providing serious and immediate consequences for all impaired drivers. Read Freeing up police and courts to make Alberta safer for more information.
Alberta’s alcohol- and drug-impaired driving offences and sanctions include immediate roadside vehicle seizures. You must contact the Alberta Transportation Safety Board (ATSB) to appeal a vehicle seizure. The ATSB is an independent tribunal that hears appeals on a broad range of traffic safety issues.
You can only submit an appeal to the ATSB for vehicle seizures that are 7 days or longer.
The purchase of an appeal application does not guarantee the return of the vehicle. See the appeal process.
Vehicle seized while you are not the driver
Vehicle seizures that occur while a friend or family member is using your vehicle can be appealed to the ATSB. As the registered owner, you are responsible for all costs involved in the seizure. The purchase of an appeal application does not guarantee the return of your vehicle.
Vehicles owned by an employer or rental agency
The employer or rental car agency can appeal the seizure to the ATSB. As the registered owner, the employer or agency is responsible for all costs involved in the seizure. The purchase of an appeal application does not guarantee the return of the vehicle.
The owner at the time the vehicle is seized, or a person who has an interest in the vehicle, can appeal the seizure to the ATSB.
The vehicle seizure must be appealed within 30 days of being issued, as per section 45(2) of Alberta’s Traffic Safety Act.
Hearings can be conducted in writing (non-oral) or in-person (oral) before the ATSB. Hearings may be held in Calgary or Edmonton.
The ATSB conducts all appeals within 3-5 business days for both types of hearings.
For in-person hearings, applicants are notified of the decision before they leave the ATSB’s office.
For written hearings, applicants are notified via telephone if the ATSB allows an appeal. If the appeal is denied, a decision letter is mailed to the applicant.
You must purchase an Application for Appeal – Vehicle Seizure at any Alberta registry agent.
For more information, download the Vehicle Seizure or Immobilization Appeal Hearing information sheet or pick up a hard copy at any Alberta registry agent.
It is recommended that you review the information sheet to determine eligibility criteria prior to purchasing the application for appeal. Application fees are not refundable.
The Alberta Transportation Safety Board will hear appeals within 3 to 5 business days of receiving a completed application.
There is a fee for the Application for Appeal – Vehicle Seizure form which can be purchased at any Alberta registry agent. Applications are $250 for an in-person hearing and $125 for a written hearing (plus any registry agent service fees).
Towing and impound fees
Towing and impound fees for vehicles vary depending on the length of the tow ride and any additional equipment needed to complete the tow.
Generally, the cost can start at $116 and increase approximately $2 per kilometre.
Storage fees vary, but are usually a minimum of $30 a day.
These are estimated costs only, based on Edmonton prices. Costs may be greater in other locations.
To connect with the Alberta Transportation Safety Board
Hours: 8:15 am to 12:00 pm, and 1:00 pm to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
North office (if you live north of Red Deer)
Alberta Transportation Safety Board
Main Floor, Twin Atria Building
4999 98 Avenue NW
Edmonton, Alberta T6B 2X3
South office (Red Deer and south)
Alberta Transportation Safety Board
Suite 302 Willow Park Centre
10325 Bonaventure Drive Southeast
Calgary, Alberta T2J 7E4