Nearly 60 vehicle owners could be in line to receive refunds of more than $150 if they had a car that was improperly towed from a shopping center in downtown Silver Spring.

Montgomery County’s Office of Consumer Protection (OCP) said the vehicles were parked in a shopping center located at the intersection of Georgia Avenue and Colesville Road. The investigation into the matter was prompted by a tip from a television news station. The OCP found that between Oct. 1, 2012 until March 15, 2013, the signs posted at the shopping center were not in compliance with county and state trespass towing laws.

“Trespass towing complaints are frequently the largest category of complaints we receive,” said OCP director Eric Friedman. “We urge all drivers to be vigilant in carefully reading all parking restriction signs at shopping centers and to file a complaint with OCP if they believe abuses have occurred.”

OCP reached an agreement with the owners of the shopping center in which the owner agreed to correct the deficiencies and made arrangements to provide full refunds to consumers.  OCP has obtained the names and addresses of approximately 58 vehicle owners and has attempted to reach them to advise that they are eligible to receive a full refund of the money they paid to the towing firm in order to retrieve their vehicles.

For information about towing laws, check  OCP’s Web page,