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United States
GEORGIA CODES TITLE 44 - PROPERTY CHAPTER 12 - RIGHTS IN PERSONALTY

  1. CHAPTER 12 - RIGHTS IN PERSONALTY
    1. ARTICLE 1 - IN GENERAL
      1. § 44-12-1 - Partition of personal property
    2. ARTICLE 2 - CHOSES IN ACTION
      1. § 44-12-20 - "Chose in action" defined
      2. § 44-12-21 - Rights and remedies to enforce choses in action
      3. § 44-12-22 - Assignment of choses in action arising upon contracts
      4. § 44-12-23 - Assignment of a fund
      5. § 44-12-24 - What rights of action may and may not be assigned
    3. ARTICLE 3 - BAILMENTS
      1. PART 1 - IN GENERAL
        1. § 44-12-40 - "Bailment" defined
        2. § 44-12-41 - Bailment contract as entire; performance as condition precedent to action upon it
        3. § 44-12-42 - Rights of bailee in bailed property; actions to enforce rights
        4. § 44-12-43 - Care required of bailees
        5. § 44-12-44 - Burden on bailee after loss; proper diligence standard
        6. § 44-12-45 - When act of God or contract exception available as defense
      2. PART 2 - HIRING
        1. § 44-12-60 - "Hiring" defined
        2. § 44-12-61 - Qualified ownership and rights of hirer
        3. § 44-12-62 - Duties of hirer; liability for acts of bailor's agents
        4. § 44-12-63 - Obligations of bailor
        5. § 44-12-64 - Duty to return property; assumption of risks; time of return
        6. § 44-12-65 - Effect of breach of contract; action for conversion by bailor
        7. § 44-12-66 - Effect of loss or destruction of thing hired; liability of hirer
        8. § 44-12-67 - When hirer may relet; effect of reletting without consent of bailor
        9. § 44-12-68 - Consent required for removal of hired thing from state or hazardous use
        10. § 44-12-69 - Rights of action of hirer and bailor
        11. § 44-12-70 - Liability of thing hired to execution and levy; forthcoming bond
        12. § 44-12-71 - Hire of labor or services -- Standard of care
        13. § 44-12-72 - Hire of labor or services -- Title to article on which labor bestowed
        14. § 44-12-73 - Hire of labor or services -- Right to possession
        15. § 44-12-74 - Hire of labor or services -- Loss or destruction of property; right of bailee to compensation
        16. § 44-12-75 - Exercise of discretion by factor; diligence
        17. § 44-12-76 - Keeper of livery stable; diligence
        18. § 44-12-77 - Garage owner; diligence
        19. § 44-12-78 - Keeper of wharf; liability
      3. PART 3 - DEPOSITS
        1. § 44-12-90 - Definitions
        2. § 44-12-91 - Voluntary or involuntary depositories; liability for naked deposit
        3. § 44-12-92 - Liability of depositories for hire
        4. § 44-12-93 - Liability for gratuitously transporting deposits
        5. § 44-12-94 - Termination of bailment of naked deposit
        6. § 44-12-95 - Effect of use of naked deposit on liability
        7. § 44-12-96 - Reimbursement of expenses incurred by reason of naked deposit; retention of possession
      4. PART 4 - LOANS OF PROPERTY
        1. § 44-12-110 - Kinds of loans; nature of loan for consumption
        2. § 44-12-111 - Nature of loan for use
        3. § 44-12-112 - Liability of borrower -- Duty of extraordinary care
        4. § 44-12-113 - Liability of borrower -- Effect of intended benefit of loan
        5. § 44-12-114 - Right of borrower to possession; action for interference
        6. § 44-12-115 - When borrower may transfer thing loaned; liability of article to levy and sale
        7. § 44-12-116 - Revocability of loans
        8. § 44-12-117 - Liability for necessary and extraordinary charges and expenses
        9. § 44-12-118 - Ownership of increase in loaned property
        10. § 44-12-119 - How loaned property used; acts considered as conversion
        11. § 44-12-120 - When death of parties terminates loans
      5. PART 5 - PAWNBROKERS
        1. § 44-12-130 - Definitions
        2. § 44-12-131 - Duration of pawn transactions; lease-back of motor vehicles prohibited; taking possession of motor vehicles; restrictions on interest, fees, or charges; action to recover excessive or
        3. § 44-12-132 - Permanent records -- Required; content
        4. § 44-12-133 - Permanent records -- Manner of recording entry; corrections; inspection
        5. § 44-12-134 - Permanent records -- Maintained for four years
        6. § 44-12-135 - Effect of part on local laws
        7. § 44-12-136 - Supervision of pawnbrokers by municipalities
        8. § 44-12-137 - Prohibited acts; penalties; presumption as to pledgor; replacement of lost or damaged goods
        9. § 44-12-138 - Restrictions on advertising; disclosure tickets or statements
    4. ARTICLE 4 - TROVER
      1. PART 1 - IN GENERAL
        1. § 44-12-150 - Effect of defendant's possession on necessity of proof of conversion
        2. § 44-12-151 - Right of plaintiff to elect form of verdict
        3. § 44-12-152 - Determination of value of property
        4. § 44-12-153 - Tender of property and hire; effect on costs
        5. § 44-12-154 - Setoff and recoupment in action involving purchase money contract; judgment; lien of defendant
        6. § 44-12-155 - Alternative verdict; effect as first lien pending payment of judgment
        7. § 44-12-156 - Effect of judgment for damages in trover; priority
        8. § 44-12-157 - Effect of destruction of or injury to property on defendant's liability
        9. § 44-12-158 - Fees and costs when $100.00 or less is involved
      2. PART 2 - BAIL IN TROVER PROCEEDINGS
        1. § 44-12-170 - Sale of perishable or other property in absence of replevy; amount of money verdict for plaintiff
        2. § 44-12-171 - Recovery by defendant in trover action when plaintiff had replevied property
    5. ARTICLE 5 - DISPOSITION OF UNCLAIMED PROPERTY
      1. § 44-12-190 - Short title
      2. § 44-12-191 - Construction of article
      3. § 44-12-192 - Definitions
      4. § 44-12-193 - When property held, issued, or owing in ordinary course of holder's business presumed abandoned
      5. § 44-12-194 - Conditions under which intangible property subject to custody of state as unclaimed property
      6. § 44-12-195 - When sums payable on traveler's checks or money orders deemed abandoned; conditions under which same may be subjected to custody of state as unclaimed property
      7. § 44-12-196 - When instruments on which banking or financial organization directly liable presumed abandoned; service charges
      8. § 44-12-197 - When certain deposits or other interests in banking or financial organization presumed abandoned
      9. § 44-12-198 - When fund under life or endowment insurance policy or annuity contract presumed abandoned
      10. § 44-12-199 - When funds held or owing by utility presumed abandoned
      11. § 44-12-200 - When unclaimed court ordered refund from business association presumed abandoned
      12. § 44-12-201 - When undistributed dividends and distributions of business associations presumed abandoned; when intangible interest in business associations presumed abandoned
      13. § 44-12-202 - When unclaimed property distributed in course of dissolution or liquidation of a person presumed abandoned
      14. § 44-12-203 - When intangible property held in fiduciary capacity for benefit of another, and income derived therefrom, presumed abandoned
      15. § 44-12-204 - When intangible property held for owner by state or federal entity presumed abandoned
      16. § 44-12-205 - When gift certificate or credit memo presumed abandoned
      17. § 44-12-206 - When unpaid wages presumed abandoned
      18. § 44-12-207 - When employee benefit trust distributions and income thereon presumed abandoned; exceptions
      19. § 44-12-208 - When funds held or owing by insurer or hospital, medical, or dental service corporation presumed abandoned; when sums payable on negotiable instrument for payment of claim under insura
      20. § 44-12-209 - Rent due on safe-deposit boxes; notice of opening of box and sealing of contents when contents deemed abandoned; delivery to commissioner
      21. § 44-12-210 - Commencement of abandonment for certain property described in Code Section 44-12-197
      22. § 44-12-211 - When bequeathed property presumed abandoned; when person presumed dead without heirs or distributees and property presumed abandoned
      23. § 44-12-212 - When property described in Code Section 44-12-193 not subject to this article
      24. § 44-12-213 - Cooperation with other states to audit or otherwise determine unclaimed property subject to claim; rules and procedure
      25. § 44-12-214 - Report and remittance of persons holding property presumed abandoned under this article
      26. § 44-12-215 - Publication of "Georgia Unclaimed Property List"; contents of notice
      27. § 44-12-216 - Assumption of custody by state; legal proceedings instituted by other state; reimbursements for costs to safe-deposit box holders
      28. § 44-12-217 - Sale or destruction of property
      29. § 44-12-218 - Disposition of funds received under article; authorized deductions
      30. § 44-12-219 - When commissioner may decline to receive certain property
      31. § 44-12-220 - Claims for property paid or delivered to commissioner; procedure; destruction of records after seven years
      32. § 44-12-221 - Appeal of commissioner's decision
      33. § 44-12-222 - Determination of claim; hearing
      34. § 44-12-223 - Effect of periods of limitation
      35. § 44-12-224 - Agreement and fees for recovery or assistance in recovery of property reported and delivered to commissioner
      36. § 44-12-225 - Confidentiality of information or records required by this article
      37. § 44-12-226 - Expiration of limitation specified by contract, statute, or court order not to affect duties required by this article
      38. § 44-12-227 - Penalties
      39. § 44-12-228 - Maintenance and retention of records
      40. § 44-12-229 - Commissioner may compel filing of report and may examine records; failure to maintain records
      41. § 44-12-230 - Employment of independent consultant
      42. § 44-12-231 - Enforcement of article; properties not paid over on a timely basis
      43. § 44-12-232 - Article does not relieve holder of duty that arose before July 1, 1990
      44. § 44-12-233 - Receipt of securities under this article
      45. § 44-12-234 - Property in foreign country or arising out of foreign transaction
      46. § 44-12-235 - Rules and regulations
      47. § 44-12-236 - Alternative method of disposition with respect to certain dividends or capital credits which are presumed abandoned; definitions; procedures
    6. ARTICLE 6 - FALLING PECANS
      1. § 44-12-240 - Definitions
      2. § 44-12-241 - Pecans falling on public right of way -- Ownership during harvest season; picking pecans from tree limbs without permission; penalty
      3. § 44-12-242 - Pecans falling on public right of way -- Removal out of harvest season
      4. § 44-12-243 - Effect of article on maintenance of public rights of way; harvest on limited access highways
    7. ARTICLE 7 - PROTECTION OF AMERICAN INDIAN HUMAN REMAINS AND BURIAL OBJECTS
      1. PART 1 - AMERICAN INDIAN HUMAN REMAINS AND BURIAL OBJECTS HELD BY MUSEUMS
        1. § 44-12-260 - Definitions
        2. § 44-12-261 - Inventory of American Indian human remains or burial objects in possession of museum; additional documentation upon request of American Indian tribe; construction of part; extension of
        3. § 44-12-262 - Return of human remains and burial objects upon request of known lineal descendant or tribe; immunity of museum for returns made in good faith; private collections of artifacts not con
        4. § 44-12-263 - Monitoring and review of inventory, identification, and repatriation activities
        5. § 44-12-264 - Penalties for violation of Code Sections 44-12-261 and 44-12-262
      2. PART 2 - COUNCIL ON AMERICAN INDIAN CONCERNS
        1. § 44-12-280 - Council on American Indian Concerns created; membership; assignment for administrative purposes; terms of office; removal for failure to attend meetings
        2. § 44-12-281 - Compensation and expenses
        3. § 44-12-282 - Chairperson; meetings; quorum
        4. § 44-12-283 - Powers and duties of council
        5. § 44-12-283.1 - Additional powers of council
        6. § 44-12-283.2 - Council authorized to promulgate rules and regulations; notification requirement
        7. § 44-12-284 - Delegation of duties; professional, technical, and clerical personnel
        8. § 44-12-285 - Annual report
      3. PART 3 - LEGITIMATE AMERICAN INDIAN TRIBES
        1. § 44-12-300 - Tribes, bands, groups, or communities recognized by state as legitimate American Indian Tribes
    8. ARTICLE 8 - DIE, MOLDS, FORMS, AND PATTERNS
      1. PART 1 - IN GENERAL
        1. § 44-12-310 - Definitions
        2. § 44-12-311 - Rights and title; transfer to molder
      2. PART 2 - MOLDERS' LIENS
        1. § 44-12-320 - Lien created; notice; enforcement; public auction authorized
        2. § 44-12-321 - Notice before sale of property; violation of certain rights prohibited
        3. § 44-12-322 - Effect of part on other laws of this state

Georgia Codes
TITLE 44 - PROPERTY
CHAPTER 12 - RIGHTS IN PERSONALTY

ARTICLE 1 - IN GENERAL

§ 44-12-1 - Partition of personal property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-1 (2010)
44-12-1. Partition of personal property


Application may be made and partition of personal property may be obtained in the same manner and under the same regulations as are prescribed by law for obtaining a partition of lands and tenements.

ARTICLE 2 - CHOSES IN ACTION

§ 44-12-20 - "Chose in action" defined

O.C.G.A. 44-12-20 (2010)
44-12-20. "Chose in action" defined


A chose in action is personalty to which the owner has a right of possession in the future or a right of immediate possession which is being wrongfully withheld.

§ 44-12-21 - Rights and remedies to enforce choses in action

O.C.G.A. 44-12-21 (2010)
44-12-21. Rights and remedies to enforce choses in action


For every violation of an express or implied contract and for every injury done by another to one's person or property, the law gives a right to recover and a remedy to enforce it. The right is a chose in action, and the remedy is an action at law.

§ 44-12-22 - Assignment of choses in action arising upon contracts

O.C.G.A. 44-12-22 (2010)
44-12-22. Assignment of choses in action arising upon contracts


Except as may be otherwise provided in Title 11, all choses in action arising upon contract may be assigned so as to vest the title in the assignee, but he takes it, except negotiable instruments subject to the equities existing between the assignor and debtor at the time of the assignment, and until notice of the assignment is given to the person liable.

§ 44-12-23 - Assignment of a fund

O.C.G.A. 44-12-23 (2010)
44-12-23. Assignment of a fund


A fund may be assigned in writing. The written acceptance of a draft will be treated as an assignment pro tanto of funds of the drawer in the hands of the acceptor.

§ 44-12-24 - What rights of action may and may not be assigned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-24 (2010)
44-12-24. What rights of action may and may not be assigned


Except for those situations governed by Code Sections 11-2-210 and 11-9-406, a right of action is assignable if it involves, directly or indirectly, a right of property. A right of action for personal torts or for injuries arising from fraud to the assignor may not be assigned.

ARTICLE 3 - BAILMENTS

PART 1 - IN GENERAL

§ 44-12-40 - "Bailment" defined

O.C.G.A. 44-12-40 (2010)
44-12-40. "Bailment" defined


A bailment is a delivery of goods or property upon a contract, express or implied, to carry out the execution of a special object beneficial either to the bailor or bailee or both and to dispose of the property in conformity with the purpose of the trust.

§ 44-12-41 - Bailment contract as entire; performance as condition precedent to action upon it

O.C.G.A. 44-12-41 (2010)
44-12-41. Bailment contract as entire; performance as condition precedent to action upon it


As a general rule, the contract of bailment is an entire contract and a full performance is a condition precedent to an action upon it.

§ 44-12-42 - Rights of bailee in bailed property; actions to enforce rights

O.C.G.A. 44-12-42 (2010)
44-12-42. Rights of bailee in bailed property; actions to enforce rights


During the bailment, in all cases the bailee has a right to the possession of the property and in most cases a special right of property in the thing bailed. For a violation of these rights by anyone he has a cause of action.

§ 44-12-43 - Care required of bailees

O.C.G.A. 44-12-43 (2010)
44-12-43. Care required of bailees


All bailees are required to exercise care and diligence to protect the thing bailed and to keep it safe. Different degrees of diligence are required according to the nature of the bailments.

§ 44-12-44 - Burden on bailee after loss; proper diligence standard

O.C.G.A. 44-12-44 (2010)
44-12-44. Burden on bailee after loss; proper diligence standard


In all cases of bailment, after proof of loss by the bailor, the burden of proof is on the bailee to show proper diligence.

§ 44-12-45 - When act of God or contract exception available as defense

O.C.G.A. 44-12-45 (2010)
44-12-45. When act of God or contract exception available as defense


In order for a bailee to avail himself of an act of God or an exception under the contract as a defense, he must establish not only that the act of God or excepted fact ultimately occasioned the loss but that his own negligence did not contribute to the loss.

PART 2 - HIRING

§ 44-12-60 - "Hiring" defined

O.C.G.A. 44-12-60 (2010)
44-12-60. "Hiring" defined


The term "hiring" means a contract by which one person grants to another either the enjoyment of a thing or the use of the labor and industry of himself during a certain time and for a stipulated compensation or by which one person contracts for the labor or services of another person with regard to a thing bailed to such other person for a specified purpose.

§ 44-12-61 - Qualified ownership and rights of hirer

O.C.G.A. 44-12-61 (2010)
44-12-61. Qualified ownership and rights of hirer


The hirer of things acquires a qualified ownership of them for the time specified, which qualified ownership entitles him to all their increase and to the possession and enjoyment of them during the period of bailment against everyone else, including the owner himself.

§ 44-12-62 - Duties of hirer; liability for acts of bailor's agents

O.C.G.A. 44-12-62 (2010)
44-12-62. Duties of hirer; liability for acts of bailor's agents


(a) The duties of the hirer of things are:

(1) To put the thing to no other use than that for which it is hired;

(2) To take ordinary care in its use;

(3) To redeliver the thing at the expiration of the bailment; and

(4) To comply generally with the terms of the hiring.

(b) If the bailor sends his own agents with the thing bailed, the hirer shall not be liable for the acts of such agents but shall only be liable either to the bailor or to third persons for the consequences of his own directions and for gross neglect.

§ 44-12-63 - Obligations of bailor

O.C.G.A. 44-12-63 (2010)
44-12-63. Obligations of bailor


The obligations of the bailor of things are:

(1) To do no act to deprive the hirer of the use and enjoyment of the chattel during the period of the bailment;

(2) To keep the thing in suitable order and repair for the purposes of the bailment; and

(3) To warrant the right of possession and that the thing bailed is free from any secret fault rendering it unfit for the purposes for which it is hired.

§ 44-12-64 - Duty to return property; assumption of risks; time of return

O.C.G.A. 44-12-64 (2010)
44-12-64. Duty to return property; assumption of risks; time of return


The contract of hire may call for the return of the thing or of like property of the same kind and quality. If the return of the thing is specified, the risk of death or inevitable accident is with the bailor and he can retake possession immediately at the expiration of the time of hiring. If the return of like property of the same kind and quality is specified, the risk is with the bailee and he must redeliver the thing hired before the bailor's interest is revested.

§ 44-12-65 - Effect of breach of contract; action for conversion by bailor

O.C.G.A. 44-12-65 (2010)
44-12-65. Effect of breach of contract; action for conversion by bailor


If either party violates the terms of the hiring, the other party may abandon the contract. If the hirer puts the thing to a different use than is specified in the contract, the bailor may bring an action as for a conversion even if the hirer is a minor.

§ 44-12-66 - Effect of loss or destruction of thing hired; liability of hirer

O.C.G.A. 44-12-66 (2010)
44-12-66. Effect of loss or destruction of thing hired; liability of hirer


The loss or destruction of the thing hired without fault on the part of the hirer puts an end to the bailment, and the hirer is required to pay only for the time it was enjoyed.

§ 44-12-67 - When hirer may relet; effect of reletting without consent of bailor

O.C.G.A. 44-12-67 (2010)
44-12-67. When hirer may relet; effect of reletting without consent of bailor


No hirer of a thing has a right to hire out the thing bailed to him to another person except with the consent, express or implied, of the bailor. If the hirer relets to another person without the consent of the bailor, the bailor may either take immediate possession of the thing bailed or waive this right and hold the hirer bound to extraordinary care and diligence on the part of himself and the hirer from him.

§ 44-12-68 - Consent required for removal of hired thing from state or hazardous use

O.C.G.A. 44-12-68 (2010)
44-12-68. Consent required for removal of hired thing from state or hazardous use


No hirer of things has a right to remove such things beyond the jurisdiction of this state except by consent of the bailor nor to put the thing hired to any hazardous use unless such use was specially contracted for.

§ 44-12-69 - Rights of action of hirer and bailor

O.C.G.A. 44-12-69 (2010)
44-12-69. Rights of action of hirer and bailor


For an interference with the possession of the thing hired, the right of action is in the hirer; for an injury to the property and for any interference with his property rights, the bailor has a right of action.

§ 44-12-70 - Liability of thing hired to execution and levy; forthcoming bond

O.C.G.A. 44-12-70 (2010)
44-12-70. Liability of thing hired to execution and levy; forthcoming bond


When the period of the hiring does not exceed one year, the thing hired shall not be subject to sale under a judgment against the owner of the thing which was obtained subsequent to the contract of hire; but the thing may be levied on and a bond for its delivery at the expiration of the time for which it is hired may be demanded of the hirer.

§ 44-12-71 - Hire of labor or services -- Standard of care

O.C.G.A. 44-12-71 (2010)
44-12-71. Hire of labor or services -- Standard of care


The hire of labor or services is the essence of every bailment in which goods are delivered to another and compensation is paid for the care, attention, or labor bestowed upon them. It includes the contracts of forwarding and commission merchants, factors, keepers of wharves, mechanics, and all agents in such transactions. In all such cases, the bailee is not only bound to exercise skill in the labor and work bestowed but it is a part of his contract that he shall exercise ordinary care and diligence in keeping and protecting the articles entrusted to him.

§ 44-12-72 - Hire of labor or services -- Title to article on which labor bestowed

O.C.G.A. 44-12-72 (2010)
44-12-72. Hire of labor or services -- Title to article on which labor bestowed


In cases of hire of labor or services, if the identical article, though materially changed by the labor bestowed, is to be returned, the title remains in the bailor. If the bailee furnishes a portion of the materials, the title to the entire structure is in the party furnishing the larger portion of the materials. If the bailor furnishes materials but the contract does not contemplate the use of that material specially, the title to the article constructed is in the bailee until it is delivered. If materials are furnished to the bailee for manufacture and the bailee and the bailor will each receive a share of the manufactured goods, the title remains in the bailor until the delivery to him of his portion of the manufactured goods.

§ 44-12-73 - Hire of labor or services -- Right to possession

O.C.G.A. 44-12-73 (2010)
44-12-73. Hire of labor or services -- Right to possession


The bailee for hire of labor and services is entitled to the possession of the thing bailed during the bailment.

§ 44-12-74 - Hire of labor or services -- Loss or destruction of property; right of bailee to compensation

O.C.G.A. 44-12-74 (2010)
44-12-74. Hire of labor or services -- Loss or destruction of property; right of bailee to compensation


If the thing bailed for labor and services is destroyed without fault on the part of the bailee, the loss falls upon the bailor; and the bailee may demand compensation for the labor expended and materials used upon it.

§ 44-12-75 - Exercise of discretion by factor; diligence

O.C.G.A. 44-12-75 (2010)
44-12-75. Exercise of discretion by factor; diligence


Since peculiar confidence is reposed in a factor, he may, in the absence of instructions, exercise his discretion according to the general usages of the trade. In return, greater and more skillful diligence and the most active good faith are required of him.

§ 44-12-76 - Keeper of livery stable; diligence

O.C.G.A. 44-12-76 (2010)
44-12-76. Keeper of livery stable; diligence


The keeper of a livery stable is a depository for hire and is bound to use the same diligence as an innkeeper.

§ 44-12-77 - Garage owner; diligence

O.C.G.A. 44-12-77 (2010)
44-12-77. Garage owner; diligence


The relationship of the owner of an automobile and the owner of the garage in which the automobile is stored is that of bailor and bailee. The bailee is bound to use ordinary care for the safekeeping and return of the automobile.

§ 44-12-78 - Keeper of wharf; liability

O.C.G.A. 44-12-78 (2010)
44-12-78. Keeper of wharf; liability


One who keeps a wharf is a depository for hire and is liable upon the same principles as a warehouseman.

PART 3 - DEPOSITS

§ 44-12-90 - Definitions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-90 (2010)
44-12-90. Definitions


As used in this part, the term:

(1) "Deposit" means the delivery of chattels by one person to another to keep for the use of the bailor.

(2) "Depository for hire" means a depository who receives or expects a reward or hire for undertaking to keep chattels for another.

(3) "Naked deposit" means an undertaking whereby a depository keeps chattels for another gratuitously.

§ 44-12-91 - Voluntary or involuntary depositories; liability for naked deposit

O.C.G.A. 44-12-91 (2010)
44-12-91. Voluntary or involuntary depositories; liability for naked deposit


A person may voluntarily undertake to be a depository or may become so involuntarily, as by finding chattels. For a naked deposit, the depository is responsible only for gross negligence.

§ 44-12-92 - Liability of depositories for hire

O.C.G.A. 44-12-92 (2010)
44-12-92. Liability of depositories for hire


Depositories for hire are bound to exercise ordinary care and diligence and are liable as in other cases of bailment for hire.

§ 44-12-93 - Liability for gratuitously transporting deposits

O.C.G.A. 44-12-93 (2010)
44-12-93. Liability for gratuitously transporting deposits


If one, in addition to safekeeping, undertakes gratuitously to carry money or other articles to another place, his liability is the same as that of a naked depository.

§ 44-12-94 - Termination of bailment of naked deposit

O.C.G.A. 44-12-94 (2010)
44-12-94. Termination of bailment of naked deposit


One who holds a naked deposit may at any time terminate the bailment by a redelivery of the chattels to the bailor.

§ 44-12-95 - Effect of use of naked deposit on liability

O.C.G.A. 44-12-95 (2010)
44-12-95. Effect of use of naked deposit on liability


One who holds a naked deposit may not use such deposit without increasing his responsibility unless the use is necessary to preserve the deposit or, from the circumstances, the consent of the depositor may be reasonably presumed.

§ 44-12-96 - Reimbursement of expenses incurred by reason of naked deposit; retention of possession

O.C.G.A. 44-12-96 (2010)
44-12-96. Reimbursement of expenses incurred by reason of naked deposit; retention of possession


One who holds a naked deposit is entitled to be reimbursed for all charges and expenses which he incurs by reason of the deposit, and he may retain possession of the deposit until such charges and expenses are paid.

PART 4 - LOANS OF PROPERTY

§ 44-12-110 - Kinds of loans; nature of loan for consumption

O.C.G.A. 44-12-110 (2010)
44-12-110. Kinds of loans; nature of loan for consumption


Loans may be either for consumption or for use. A loan for consumption is a loan of an article which is not to be returned in specie, but in kind; this is a sale and not a bailment.

§ 44-12-111 - Nature of loan for use

O.C.G.A. 44-12-111 (2010)
44-12-111. Nature of loan for use


A loan for use is the gratuitous grant of an article to another for his use with the expectation that the article will be returned in specie. A loan for use may be made either for a definite time or for an indefinite time and is at the will of the grantor.

§ 44-12-112 - Liability of borrower -- Duty of extraordinary care

O.C.G.A. 44-12-112 (2010)
44-12-112. Liability of borrower -- Duty of extraordinary care


The borrower is usually bound to exercise extraordinary care and diligence and is liable for slight neglect.

§ 44-12-113 - Liability of borrower -- Effect of intended benefit of loan

O.C.G.A. 44-12-113 (2010)
44-12-113. Liability of borrower -- Effect of intended benefit of loan


A loan is generally entirely for the benefit of the borrower, but sometimes it is for the joint benefit of the lender and the borrower and occasionally it is for the exclusive benefit of the lender. Where the loan is for the joint benefit of the lender and the borrower or is for the exclusive benefit of the lender, the responsibility of the borrower is varied and less stringent according to the circumstances and purpose of the loan.

§ 44-12-114 - Right of borrower to possession; action for interference

O.C.G.A. 44-12-114 (2010)
44-12-114. Right of borrower to possession; action for interference


The borrower acquires no property right in the thing loaned but only the right to possess and use it. The borrower may bring an action for any interference with that right.

§ 44-12-115 - When borrower may transfer thing loaned; liability of article to levy and sale

O.C.G.A. 44-12-115 (2010)
44-12-115. When borrower may transfer thing loaned; liability of article to levy and sale


If a loan is for the personal benefit and use of the borrower, he cannot transfer the possession of the thing loaned to another without the consent, express or implied, of the lender. If the loan is for a definite time, the borrower has no such interest in the thing loaned as it may be subject to levy and sale.

§ 44-12-116 - Revocability of loans

O.C.G.A. 44-12-116 (2010)
44-12-116. Revocability of loans


The lender may not revoke a loan which is made for a definite time so long as the borrower meets fully his engagements with respect to such loan. A loan at will or a loan made for an indefinite time may be revoked at any time.

§ 44-12-117 - Liability for necessary and extraordinary charges and expenses

O.C.G.A. 44-12-117 (2010)
44-12-117. Liability for necessary and extraordinary charges and expenses


Since a loan is gratuitous, the borrower must pay all necessary charges and expenses in preserving and taking care of the property during the time of the loan. If, however, extraordinary expenses are necessary to protect the property from destruction, the lender must reimburse the borrower for such expenses.

§ 44-12-118 - Ownership of increase in loaned property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-118 (2010)
44-12-118. Ownership of increase in loaned property


The increase of loaned property, except property loaned by special contract, belongs to the lender.

§ 44-12-119 - How loaned property used; acts considered as conversion

O.C.G.A. 44-12-119 (2010)
44-12-119. How loaned property used; acts considered as conversion


The property loaned must be used strictly for the purpose and in the manner contemplated by the parties. A violation by the borrower is a conversion.

§ 44-12-120 - When death of parties terminates loans

O.C.G.A. 44-12-120 (2010)
44-12-120. When death of parties terminates loans


The death of the lender terminates all indefinite loans or loans at will or pleasure. It does not terminate a loan for a definite time. The death of the borrower terminates all loans to him.

PART 5 - PAWNBROKERS

§ 44-12-130 - Definitions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-130 (2010)
44-12-130. Definitions


As used in this part, the term:

(1) "Month" means that period of time from one date in a calendar month to the corresponding date in the following calendar month, but if there is no such corresponding date, then the last day of such following month.

(2) "Pawnbroker" means any person engaged in whole or in part in the business of lending money on the security of pledged goods, or in the business of purchasing tangible personal property on the condition that it may be redeemed or repurchased by the seller for a fixed price within a fixed period of time, or in the business of purchasing tangible personal property from persons or sources other than manufacturers or licensed dealers as a part of or in conjunction with the business activities described in this paragraph.

(3) "Pawn transaction" means any loan on the security of pledged goods or any purchase of pledged goods on the condition that the pledged goods may be redeemed or repurchased by the pledgor or seller for a fixed price within a fixed period of time.

(4) "Person" means an individual, partnership, corporation, joint venture, trust, association, or any other legal entity however organized.

(5) "Pledged goods" means tangible personal property, including, without limitation, all types of motor vehicles or any motor vehicle certificate of title, which property is purchased by, deposited with, or otherwise actually delivered into the possession of a pawnbroker in connection with a pawn transaction. However, for purposes of this Code section, possession of any motor vehicle certificate of title which has come into the possession of a pawnbroker through a pawn transaction made in accordance with law shall be conclusively deemed to be possession of the motor vehicle, and the pawnbroker shall retain physical possession of the motor vehicle certificate of title for the entire length of the pawn transaction but shall not be required in any way to retain physical possession of the motor vehicle at any time. "Pledged goods" shall not include choses in action, securities, or printed evidences of indebtedness.

§ 44-12-131 - Duration of pawn transactions; lease-back of motor vehicles prohibited; taking possession of motor vehicles; restrictions on interest, fees, or charges; action to recover excessive or

O.C.G.A. 44-12-131 (2010)
44-12-131. Duration of pawn transactions; lease-back of motor vehicles prohibited; taking possession of motor vehicles; restrictions on interest, fees, or charges; action to recover excessive or undisclosed charges; consequences of excessive charges


(a)(1) All pawn transactions shall be for 30 day periods but may be extended or continued for additional 30 day periods.

(2) A pawnbroker shall not lease back to the seller or pledgor any motor vehicle during a pawn transaction or during any extension or continuation of the pawn transaction.

(3) Unless otherwise agreed, a pawnbroker has upon default the right to take possession of the motor vehicle. In taking possession, the pawnbroker or his agent may proceed without judicial process if this can be done without breach of the peace or may proceed by action.
(4)(A) During the first 90 days of any pawn transaction or extension or continuation of the pawn transaction, a pawnbroker may charge for each 30 day period interest and pawnshop charges which together equal no more than 25 percent of the principal amount advanced, with a minimum charge of up to $10.00 per 30 day period.

(B) On any pawn transaction which is continued or extended beyond 90 days, a pawnbroker may charge for each 30 day period interest and pawnshop charges which together equal no more than 12.5 percent of the principal amount advanced, with a minimum charge of up to $5.00 per 30 day period.

(C) In addition to the charges provided for in subparagraphs (A) and (B) of this paragraph, in a pawn transaction or in any extension or continuation of a pawn transaction involving a motor vehicle or a motor vehicle certificate of title, a pawnbroker may charge the following:

(i) A fee equal to no more than any fee imposed by the appropriate state to register a lien upon a motor vehicle title, but only if the pawnbroker actually registers such a lien;

(ii) No more than $5.00 per day in storage fees, but only if an actual repossession pursuant to a default takes place on a vehicle which was not already in the pawnbroker's possession and only for each day the pawnbroker must actually retain possession of the motor vehicle; and

(iii) A repossession fee of $50.00 within 50 miles of the office where the pawn originated, $100.00 within 51 to 100 miles, $150.00 within 101 to 300 miles and a fee of $250.00 beyond 300 miles, but only if an actual repossession pursuant to a default takes place on a vehicle which was not already in the pawnbroker's possession.

(D) If a pledgor or seller requests that the pawnbroker mail or ship the pledged item to the pledgor or seller, a pawnbroker may charge a fee for the actual shipping and mailing costs, plus a handling fee equal to not more than 50 percent of the actual shipping and mailing costs.

(E) In the event the pledgor or seller has lost or destroyed the original pawn ticket, a pawnbroker may, at the time of redemption, charge a fee equal to not more than $2.00.

(5) No other charge or fee of any kind by whatever name denominated, including but not limited to any other storage fee for a motor vehicle, shall be made by a pawnbroker except as set out in paragraph (4) of this subsection.

(6) No fee or charge provided for in this Code section may be imposed unless a disclosure regarding that fee or charge has been properly made as provided for in Code Section 44-12-138.
(7)(A) Any interest, fees, or charges collected which are undisclosed, improperly disclosed, or in excess of that allowed by this subsection may be recovered by the pledgor or seller in an action at law in any superior court of appropriate jurisdiction.

(B) In any such action in which the pledgor or seller prevails, the court shall also award reasonable attorneys' fees, court costs, and any expenses of litigation to the pledgor or seller.

(C) Before filing an action under this Code section, the pledgor or seller shall provide the pawnbroker with a written notice by certified mail or statutory overnight delivery, return receipt requested, that such an action is contemplated, identifying any fees or charges which the pledgor or seller contends are undisclosed, improperly disclosed, or in excess of the fees and charges allowed by this Code section. If the court finds that during the 30 days following receipt of this notice the pawnbroker made a good faith offer to return any excess, undisclosed, or improperly disclosed charges, the court shall award reasonable attorneys' fees, court costs, and expenses of litigation to the pawnbroker.

(D) No action shall be brought under this Code section more than two years after the pledgor or seller knew or should have known of the excess, undisclosed, or improperly disclosed charges.

(b) Any interest, charge, or fees contracted for or received, directly or indirectly, in excess of the amounts permitted under subsection (a) of this Code section shall be uncollectable and the pawn transaction shall be void. All interest and the pawnshop charge allowed under subsection (a) of this Code section shall be deemed earned, due, and owing as of the date of the pawn transaction and a like sum shall be deemed earned, due, and owing on the same day of the succeeding month.

§ 44-12-132 - Permanent records -- Required; content

O.C.G.A. 44-12-132 (2010)
44-12-132. Permanent records -- Required; content


Every pawnbroker shall maintain a permanent record book in which shall be entered in legible English at the time of each loan, purchase, or sale:

(1) The date of the transaction;

(2) The name of the person conducting the transaction;

(3) The name, age, and address of the customer; a description of the general appearance of the customer; and the distinctive number from the customer's driver's license or other similar identification card;

(4) An identification and description of the pledged or purchased goods, including, if reasonably available, the serial, model, or other number, and all identifying marks inscribed thereon;

(5) The number of the receipt or pawn ticket;

(6) The price paid or the amount loaned;

(7) If payment is made by check, the number of the check issued for the purchase price or loan;

(8) The maturity date of the transaction; and

(9) The signature of the customer.

§ 44-12-133 - Permanent records -- Manner of recording entry; corrections; inspection

O.C.G.A. 44-12-133 (2010)
44-12-133. Permanent records -- Manner of recording entry; corrections; inspection


Entries shall appear in ink and shall be in chronological order. No blank lines may be left between entries. No obliterations, alterations, or erasures may be made. Corrections shall be made by drawing a line of ink through the entry without destroying its legibility. The book shall be open to the inspection of any duly authorized law enforcement officer during the ordinary hours of business or at any reasonable time.

§ 44-12-134 - Permanent records -- Maintained for four years

O.C.G.A. 44-12-134 (2010)
44-12-134. Permanent records -- Maintained for four years


The record of each pawn or purchase transaction provided for in Code Sections 44-12-132 and 44-12-133 shall be maintained for a period of not less than four years.

§ 44-12-135 - Effect of part on local laws

O.C.G.A. 44-12-135 (2010)
44-12-135. Effect of part on local laws


Nothing in this part shall supersede existing local laws nor relieve a pawnbroker from the necessity of complying with them. The requirements of local laws shall be construed as cumulative to this part.

§ 44-12-136 - Supervision of pawnbrokers by municipalities

O.C.G.A. 44-12-136 (2010)
44-12-136. Supervision of pawnbrokers by municipalities


Municipal authorities may license pawnbrokers, define their powers and privileges by ordinance, impose taxes upon them, revoke their licenses, and exercise such general supervision as will ensure fair dealing between the pawnbroker and his customers.

§ 44-12-137 - Prohibited acts; penalties; presumption as to pledgor; replacement of lost or damaged goods

O.C.G.A. 44-12-137 (2010)
44-12-137. Prohibited acts; penalties; presumption as to pledgor; replacement of lost or damaged goods


(a) Any pawnbroker and any clerk, agent, or employee of such pawnbroker who shall:

(1) Fail to make an entry of any material matter in his permanent record book;

(2) Make any false entry therein;

(3) Falsify, obliterate, destroy, or remove from his place of business such permanent record book;

(4) Refuse to allow any duly authorized law enforcement officer who is certified by the Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council or who is a federal officer to inspect his permanent record book or any goods in his possession during the ordinary hours of business or at any reasonable time;

(5) Fail to maintain a record of each pawn transaction for at least four years;

(6) Accept a pledge or purchase property from a person under the age of 18 years or who the pawnbroker knows is not the true owner of such property;

(7) Make any agreement requiring the personal liability of a pledgor or seller or waiving any of the provisions of this part or providing for a maturity date less than one month after the date of the pawn transaction; or

(8) Fail to return or replace pledged goods to a pledgor or seller upon payment of the full amount due the pawnbroker unless the pledged goods have been taken into custody by a court or a law enforcement officer or agency,

shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

(b) Any person properly identifying himself and presenting a pawn ticket to the pawnbroker shall be presumed to be the pledgor or seller and shall be entitled to redeem the pledged goods described in such ticket. In the event such pledged goods are lost or damaged while in the possession of the pawnbroker, it shall be the responsibility of the pawnbroker to replace the lost or damaged goods with like kinds of merchandise and proof of replacement shall be a defense to prosecution. For the purposes of this subsection, "lost" includes destroyed or having disappeared because of any cause, whether known or unknown, that results in the pledged goods being unavailable for return to the pledgor.

§ 44-12-138 - Restrictions on advertising; disclosure tickets or statements

O.C.G.A. 44-12-138 (2010)
44-12-138. Restrictions on advertising; disclosure tickets or statements


(a)(1) Any pawnbroker as defined in paragraph (2) of Code Section 44-12-130 shall include most prominently in any and all types of advertisements the word "pawn" or the words "pawn transaction." A pawnbroker shall not use the term "loan" in any advertisements or in connection with any advertising of the business of the pawnbroker; provided, however, that the provisions of this sentence shall not apply to a pawnbroker in business on March 1, 1992, which uses the term "loan" in connection with the name of the business or with advertising of the business.

(2) On any sign advertising a pawnbroker's business, the words on such sign shall be in at least 24 inch high letters. On any other sign on the property where the pawnbroker's business is located which advertises any other activities or business engaged in by the person who is a pawnbroker, the words on such sign shall be in 12 inch high letters or smaller; provided, however, that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to signs of pawnbrokers which signs are in existence on March 1, 1992.

(b) Every pawnbroker in every pawn transaction shall present the pledgor or seller with a written disclosure ticket or statement in at least nine-point type, appropriately completed, with no other written or pictorial matter except as provided in subsection (c) of this Code section, containing the following information:

(1) Information identifying the pawnbroker by name and address;

(2) A statement as follows:
"This is a pawn transaction. Failure to make your payments as described in this document can result in the loss of the pawned item. The pawnbroker can sell or keep the item if you have not made all payments by the specified maturity date.";

(3) If the pawned item is a motor vehicle or motor vehicle certificate of title, a statement as follows:
"Failure to make your payment as described in this document can result in the loss of your motor vehicle. The pawnbroker can also charge you certain fees if he or she actually repossesses the motor vehicle.";

(4) A statement that the length of the pawn transaction is 30 days and that it can only be renewed with the agreement of both parties and only for 30 day incremental periods;

(5) The annual percentage rate, computed in accordance with the federal Truth in Lending Act and regulations under the federal Truth in Lending Act, for the first 30 days of the transaction, computed as if all interest and pawnshop charges were considered to be interest;

(6) The annual percentage rate, computed in accordance with the federal Truth in Lending Act and regulations under the federal Truth in Lending Act, for each 30 day period in which the pawn transaction might be continued or extended, computed as if all interest and pawnshop charges were considered to be interest. For purposes of identifying the annual percentage rate after the second continuation or extension, a single statement which identifies an annual percentage rate for each possible 30 day period thereafter shall meet the requirements of this Code section;

(7) A statement in dollar amounts of how much it will cost the seller or pledgor to redeem the merchandise in the first 30 day period of the transaction;

(8) A statement in dollar amounts of how much it will cost the seller or pledgor to redeem the merchandise in any 30 day period after the first 30 day period of the pawn transaction, provided that all fees and charges have been kept current;

(9) A statement of the specific maturity date of the pawn transaction;

(10) A statement of how long, the grace period, the pledged goods may be redeemed after the specific maturity date and the dollar amount which will be required to redeem the pledged goods after the specific maturity date;

(11) A statement that after the grace period the pledged goods become the property of the pawnbroker;

(12) If the pawn transaction involves a motor vehicle or motor vehicle certificate of title, a statement that the pawnbroker may not charge a storage fee for the motor vehicle unless the pawnbroker repossesses the motor vehicle pursuant to a default;

(13) If the pawn transaction involves a motor vehicle or motor vehicle certificate of title, a statement that the pawnbroker may charge a storage fee for a repossessed motor vehicle not to exceed $5.00 per day, but only if the pawnbroker actually repossesses and actually must store the motor vehicle;

(14) If the pawn transaction involves a motor vehicle or motor vehicle certificate of title, a statement that the pawnbroker may charge a repossession fee, not to exceed $50.00, but only if the pawnbroker actually repossesses the motor vehicle;

(15) If the pawn transaction involves a motor vehicle or motor vehicle certificate of title, a statement that the pawnbroker may charge a fee to register a lien upon the motor vehicle certificate of title, not to exceed any fee actually charged by the appropriate state to register a lien upon a motor vehicle certificate of title, but only if the pawnbroker actually places such a lien upon the motor vehicle certificate of title;

(16) A statement that any costs to ship the pledged items to the pledgor or seller can be charged to the pledgor or seller, along with a handling fee to equal no more than 50 percent of the actual costs to ship the pledged items; and

(17) A statement that a fee of up to $2.00 can be charged for each lost or destroyed pawn ticket.

(c) In addition to the information required by subsection (b) of this Code section, the pawnbroker may, but is not required to, include the following information on the same disclosure ticket or statement, provided that such information is not used to obscure or obfuscate the information required by subsection (b) of this Code section:

(1) Information identifying the pledgor or seller;

(2) Any logo which the pawnbroker may desire to use;

(3) Any numbers or characters necessary for the pawnbroker to identify the merchandise or goods associated with the pawn transaction;

(4) Any other information required to be disclosed to consumers by any other law, rule, or regulation of the United States or of the State of Georgia;

(5) Information identifying or describing the pledged item;

(6) Information which is only for the internal business use of the pawnbroker;

(7) The hours of operation of the pawnbroker;

(8) The time of day of the pawn transaction; and

(9) Any agreement between the pledgor or seller and the pawnbroker which does not controvert the provisions of this part, of Part 5 of Article 8 of Chapter 14 of this title, or of Part 2 of Article 15 of Chapter 1 of Title 10.

(d) The pawnbroker shall have the pledgor or seller sign the disclosure statement and shall furnish a completed copy to the pledgor or seller. The pawnbroker shall maintain a completed and signed copy of the disclosure statement on file for two years subsequent to the maturity date of the pawn transaction. Failure to maintain such a copy shall be conclusive proof that the pawnbroker did not furnish such a statement to the pledgor or seller.

(e) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained elsewhere in this Code section, no municipality or local government may impose any requirements upon a pawnbroker regarding the disclosures which must be made to a pledgor or seller or which must be made in the pawn ticket, other than those requirements contained in this Code section.

ARTICLE 4 - TROVER

PART 1 - IN GENERAL

§ 44-12-150 - Effect of defendant's possession on necessity of proof of conversion

O.C.G.A. 44-12-150 (2010)
44-12-150. Effect of defendant's possession on necessity of proof of conversion


In actions to recover the possession of chattels, it shall not be necessary to prove any conversion of the property if the defendant is in possession when the action is brought.

§ 44-12-151 - Right of plaintiff to elect form of verdict

O.C.G.A. 44-12-151 (2010)
44-12-151. Right of plaintiff to elect form of verdict


In an action to recover personal property, the plaintiff may elect:

(1) To accept an alternative verdict for the property or for its value;

(2) To demand a verdict for the damages alone; or

(3) To demand a verdict for the property alone and its hire, if any.

It shall be the duty of the court to instruct the jury to render the verdict as the plaintiff elects.

§ 44-12-152 - Determination of value of property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-152 (2010)
44-12-152. Determination of value of property


For personalty unlawfully detained, the plaintiff may recover a sum in the amount of the highest value which he is able to prove existed between the time of the conversion and the trial.

§ 44-12-153 - Tender of property and hire; effect on costs

O.C.G.A. 44-12-153 (2010)
44-12-153. Tender of property and hire; effect on costs


In actions for the recovery of personal property, if the defendant disclaims all title and tenders the property to the plaintiff when he files his answer, together with reasonable hire for the same since the conversion, the costs of the action shall be paid by the plaintiff unless he proves a previous demand of the defendant and a refusal to deliver.

§ 44-12-154 - Setoff and recoupment in action involving purchase money contract; judgment; lien of defendant

O.C.G.A. 44-12-154 (2010)
44-12-154. Setoff and recoupment in action involving purchase money contract; judgment; lien of defendant


When personal property is sold and the vendor retains the title until all the purchase money is paid, if the vendor or his assigns shall bring an action to recover the possession of such personal property, the defendant in the action may plead as a setoff any demand or claim that he may have against the plaintiff or may recoup any damages that he has sustained by reason of any failure of consideration, any defects in the personal property, or any breach of contract by the plaintiff whereby the defendant has in any way been injured or damaged. If the plaintiff elects to take a money judgment for the value of the property, the amount of the setoff or damages allowed the defendant by the jury shall be deducted from the value of the property and the amount allowed for the hire or use thereof and the plaintiff shall only recover the excess; but, if the amount of the setoff or damages allowed the defendant shall exceed the value of the property and the hire thereof, the defendant shall have judgment against the plaintiff for such excess. If the plaintiff elects to take a judgment for the property, the amount allowed the defendant as the setoff or damages shall be a lien on such property superior to all other liens except liens for taxes.

§ 44-12-155 - Alternative verdict; effect as first lien pending payment of judgment

O.C.G.A. 44-12-155 (2010)
44-12-155. Alternative verdict; effect as first lien pending payment of judgment


An alternative verdict in an action of trover vests the title to the property in the plaintiff to the extent that until the judgment is paid by the defendant such judgment shall constitute the first lien on the property to the exclusion of all other claims whatsoever.

§ 44-12-156 - Effect of judgment for damages in trover; priority

O.C.G.A. 44-12-156 (2010)
44-12-156. Effect of judgment for damages in trover; priority


When a verdict for damages is rendered in favor of a plaintiff in trover and a judgment is entered thereon, the verdict and judgment shall not have the effect of changing the property which is the subject matter of the action or of vesting the same in the defendant in the action until after the damages and costs recovered by the plaintiff in the action are paid off and discharged. However, the verdict and judgment shall subject the property to sale under and by virtue of an execution issuing upon the judgment in the action of trover and shall make the property liable to the payment of the damages and costs recovered in the action in preference to any other judgment, order, or decree against the defendant in such action.

§ 44-12-157 - Effect of destruction of or injury to property on defendant's liability

O.C.G.A. 44-12-157 (2010)
44-12-157. Effect of destruction of or injury to property on defendant's liability


Pending a trover action, the death or destruction of or material injury to the property in dispute shall be no defense to a mere wrongdoer. If the defendant is a bona fide claimant and the injury arises from an act of God and is in no way the result of the defendant's conduct, the jury may take the death, destruction, or material injury of the property into consideration; but in no case shall such an event cast the costs upon the plaintiff.

§ 44-12-158 - Fees and costs when $100.00 or less is involved

O.C.G.A. 44-12-158 (2010)
44-12-158. Fees and costs when $100.00 or less is involved


In an action of trover or bail trover where the principal amount is $100.00 or less or where the value of the property sought to be recovered is $100.00 or less, the costs in such an action of trover or bail trover in the trial court shall be $5.00 which shall be equally divided to cover the services of the clerk of the court and the sheriff; provided, however, that the sheriff may also collect the additional amount of costs as provided by law for serving subpoenas upon witnesses; and provided, further, that clerks of the superior courts shall be entitled to receive the same fees as in other civil cases for performing the duties required of them in cases of trover or bail trover regardless of the amount involved in such cases of trover or bail trover.

PART 2 - BAIL IN TROVER PROCEEDINGS

§ 44-12-170 - Sale of perishable or other property in absence of replevy; amount of money verdict for plaintiff

O.C.G.A. 44-12-170 (2010)
44-12-170. Sale of perishable or other property in absence of replevy; amount of money verdict for plaintiff


Whenever any officer has taken possession of any property under process in any case of trover and the property remains in the hands of the officer because neither the plaintiff nor the defendant replevies the property, if the property is of a perishable nature or liable to deterioration from keeping or if there is expense involved in keeping the property, the property may be sold under Code Section 9-13-163; provided, however, if the property is sold, the plaintiff, in case of recovery, shall be entitled only to a money verdict for the amount of the proceeds of such sale together with any hire or interest from the date of conversion to the date of seizure found by the jury.

§ 44-12-171 - Recovery by defendant in trover action when plaintiff had replevied property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-171 (2010)
44-12-171. Recovery by defendant in trover action when plaintiff had replevied property


When the plaintiff in a trover action has replevied the property and on the trial of the case fails to recover or dismisses his petition, the defendant may recover the property and its hire or the sworn value placed upon the property in the petition instead of suing on the replevy bond.

ARTICLE 5 - DISPOSITION OF UNCLAIMED PROPERTY

§ 44-12-190 - Short title

O.C.G.A. 44-12-190 (2010)
44-12-190. Short title


This article shall be known and may be cited as the "Disposition of Unclaimed Property Act."

§ 44-12-191 - Construction of article

O.C.G.A. 44-12-191 (2010)
44-12-191. Construction of article


This article shall be so construed as to effectuate its general purpose to make uniform the law of those states which enact it.

§ 44-12-192 - Definitions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-192 (2010)
44-12-192. Definitions


As used in this article, the term:

(1) "Apparent owner" means the person whose name appears on the records of the holder as the person entitled to property held, issued, or owing by the holder.

(2) "Banking organization" means a bank, trust company, savings bank, industrial bank, land bank, safe-deposit company, private banker, or any other organization defined by federal law or the law of another state as a bank or banking organization.

(3) "Business association" means any corporation, other than a public corporation, a joint-stock company, an investment company, a business trust, or a partnership or association for business purposes of two or more individuals whether or not for profit, including a banking organization, financial organization, insurance company, or utility.

(4) "Commissioner" means the commissioner of revenue.

(5) "Domicile" means the state of incorporation, in the case of a corporation incorporated under the laws of a state, and the state of the principal place of business, in the case of a person not incorporated under the laws of a state.

(6) "Due diligence" means, but shall not be limited to, the mailing of a letter by first-class mail to the last known address of the owner as indicated on the records of the holder.

(7) "Financial organization" means any savings and loan association, cooperative bank, building and loan association, or credit union.

(8) "Holder" means a person, wherever organized or domiciled, who is:

(A) In possession of property belonging to another;

(B) A trustee in case of a trust; or

(C) Indebted to another on an obligation.

(9) "Insurance company" means an association, corporation, or fraternal or mutual benefit organization, whether or not for profit, which is engaged in providing insurance coverage of any type.

(10) "Intangible property" means and includes:

(A) Moneys, checks, drafts, deposits, interest, dividends, and income;

(B) Credit balances, customer overpayments, gift certificates, security deposits, refunds, credit memos, unpaid wages, and unidentified remittances;

(C) Stocks and other intangible ownership interests in business associations;

(D) Moneys deposited to redeem stocks, bonds, coupons, and other securities or to make distributions;

(E) Amounts due and payable under the terms of insurance policies; and

(F) Amounts distributable from a trust or custodial fund established under a plan to provide health, welfare, pension, vacation, severance, retirement, death, stock purchase, profit sharing, employee savings, supplemental unemployment insurance, or similar benefits.

(11) "Last known address" means a description of the location of the apparent owner sufficient for the purpose of the delivery of mail.

(12) "Owner" means a depositor in the case of a deposit, a beneficiary in the case of a trust other than a deposit in trust, a creditor, claimant, or payee in the case of other intangible property, or a person having a legal or equitable interest in property subject to this article or his legal representative.

(13) "Payable" means the earliest date upon which the owner of property could become entitled to the payments, possession, delivery, or distribution of such property from a holder.

(14) "Person" means an individual, business association, government, governmental subdivision or agency, public corporation, public authority, estate, trust, two or more persons having a joint or common interest, or any other legal or commercial entity.

(15) "State" means any state, district, commonwealth, territory, insular possession, or any other area subject to the authority of the United States.

(16) "Utility" means a person who owns or operates for public use any plant, equipment, property, franchise, or license for the transmission of communications or the production, storage, transmission, sale, delivery, or furnishing of electricity, water, steam, or gas.

§ 44-12-193 - When property held, issued, or owing in ordinary course of holder's business presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-193 (2010)
LexisNexis Practice Insights

A Fresh Look at State Jurisdiction to Escheat

44-12-193. When property held, issued, or owing in ordinary course of holder's business presumed abandoned


Except as provided in Article 17B of Title 10, all tangible and intangible property, including any income or increment thereon, less any lawful charges, that is held, issued, or owing in the ordinary course of the holder's business and has remained unclaimed by the owner for more than five years after it became payable or distributable is presumed abandoned, except as otherwise provided by this article. Property is payable or distributable for the purpose of this article notwithstanding the owner's failure to make demand or to present any instrument or document required to receive payment.

§ 44-12-194 - Conditions under which intangible property subject to custody of state as unclaimed property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-194 (2010)
LexisNexis Practice Insights

1. An Argument in Support of the Third Priority Rule for Unclaimed Property

2. A Fresh Look at State Jurisdiction to Escheat

44-12-194. Conditions under which intangible property subject to custody of state as unclaimed property


Unless otherwise provided in this article or by any other provision of law, intangible property is subject to the custody of this state as unclaimed property if the conditions leading to a presumption of abandonment as described in Code Section 44-12-193 are satisfied and:

(1) The last known address, as shown on the records of the holder, of the apparent owner is in this state;

(2) The records of the holder do not reflect the identity of the person entitled to the property and it is established that the last known address of the person entitled to the property is in this state;

(3) The records of the holder do not reflect the last known address of the apparent owner, and it is established that:

(A) The last known address of the person entitled to the property is in this state; or

(B) The holder is a domiciliary or a government or governmental subdivision or agency of this state and has not previously paid the property to the state of the last known address of the apparent owner or other person entitled to the property;

(4) The last known address, as shown on the records of the holder, of the apparent owner or other person entitled to the property is in a state that does not provide by law for the escheat or custodial taking of the property or its escheat or unclaimed property law is not applicable to the property and the holder is a domiciliary or a government or governmental subdivision or agency of this state;

(5) The last known address, as shown on the records of the holder, of the apparent owner is in a foreign nation and the holder is a domiciliary or a government or governmental subdivision or agency of this state; or

(6) The transaction out of which the property arose occurred in this state and:

(A) The last known address of the apparent owner or other person entitled to the property is unknown; or

(B) The last known address of the apparent owner or other person entitled to the property is in a state that does not provide by law for the escheat or custodial taking of the property or its escheat or unclaimed property law is not applicable to the property; and

(C) The holder is a domiciliary of a state that does not provide by law for the escheat or custodial taking of the property or its escheat or unclaimed property law is not applicable to the property.

§ 44-12-195 - When sums payable on traveler's checks or money orders deemed abandoned; conditions under which same may be subjected to custody of state as unclaimed property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-195 (2010)
44-12-195. When sums payable on traveler's checks or money orders deemed abandoned; conditions under which same may be subjected to custody of state as unclaimed property


(a) Except as otherwise provided in this Code section, any sum payable on a traveler's check that has been outstanding for more than 15 years after its issuance is presumed abandoned unless the owner, within 15 years, has communicated in writing with the issuer concerning it or otherwise indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file prepared by an employee of the issuer.

(b) Except as otherwise provided in this Code section, any sum payable on a money order or similar written instrument, other than a third-party bank check, that has been outstanding for more than seven years after its issuance is presumed abandoned unless the owner, within seven years, has communicated in writing with the issuer concerning it or otherwise indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file prepared by an employee of the issuer.

(c) Any sum payable on a traveler's check, money order, or similar written instrument, other than a third-party bank check, described in this Code section may not be subjected to the custody of this state as unclaimed property unless:

(1) The records of the issuer show that the traveler's check, money order, or similar written instrument was purchased in this state;

(2) The issuer has its principal place of business in this state and the records of the issuer do not show the state in which the traveler's check, money order, or similar written instrument was purchased; or

(3) The issuer has its principal place of business in this state, the records of the issuer show the state in which the traveler's check, money order, or similar written instrument was purchased, and the laws of the state of purchase do not provide for the escheat or custodial taking of the property or its escheat or unclaimed property law is not applicable to the property.

(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, the provisions of subsection (c) of this Code section relating to the requirements for subjecting certain written instruments to the custody of the state shall apply to sums payable on traveler's checks, money orders, and similar written instruments presumed abandoned on or after February 1, 1965, except to the extent that those sums have been paid over to a state prior to January 1, 1973.

§ 44-12-196 - When instruments on which banking or financial organization directly liable presumed abandoned; service charges

O.C.G.A. 44-12-196 (2010)
44-12-196. When instruments on which banking or financial organization directly liable presumed abandoned; service charges


Any sum payable on a check, draft, or similar instrument, except money orders, traveler's checks, and other similar instruments subject to Code Section 44-12-195, on which a banking or financial organization is directly liable, including but not limited to, cashier's checks and certified checks, which has been outstanding for more than five years after it was payable or after its issuance if payable on demand, is presumed abandoned unless the owner, within five years, has communicated in writing with the banking or financial organization concerning it or otherwise indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file prepared by an employee of the banking or financial organization. Except for charges imposed with respect to issuance, no banking or financial organization shall deduct a service charge from, or otherwise impose a service charge on, any instrument described in this Code section unless such instrument is not presented for payment within two years of the date of issuance. Service charges may be imposed for each month of the 12 months following such two-year period.

§ 44-12-197 - When certain deposits or other interests in banking or financial organization presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-197 (2010)
44-12-197. When certain deposits or other interests in banking or financial organization presumed abandoned


(a) Any demand, savings, or matured time deposit with a banking or financial organization, including deposits that are automatically renewable, and any funds paid toward the purchase of a share, a mutual investment certificate, or any other interest in a banking or financial organization is presumed abandoned unless the owner, within five years, has:

(1) In the case of a deposit, increased or decreased its amount or presented the passbook or other similar evidence of the deposit for the crediting of interest or negotiated a check in payment of interest on a time deposit;

(2) Communicated in writing with the banking or financial organization concerning the property;

(3) Otherwise indicated an interest in the property as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file prepared by an employee of the banking or financial organization; for purposes of this paragraph, a record of the sending of a federal Internal Revenue Service Form 1099, or its equivalent, to the persons enumerated in this subsection and a record of its not being returned by the United States Postal Service or its successor shall be an indication of interest;

(4) Owned other property to which paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of this subsection is applicable if the banking or financial organization communicated in writing with the owner with regard to the property that would otherwise be presumed abandoned under this paragraph at the address to which communications regarding the other property regularly are sent;

(5) Had another relationship with the banking or financial organization concerning which the owner has communicated in writing with the banking or financial organization or has otherwise indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file prepared by an employee of the banking or financial organization if the banking or financial organization communicates in writing with the owner with regard to property that would otherwise be abandoned under this paragraph at the address to which communications regarding the other relationship regularly are sent; or

(6) A deposit made with a banking or financial organization by a court or by a guardian pursuant to order of a court or by any other person for the benefit of a person who was a minor at the time of the making of such deposit, which deposit is subject to withdrawal only upon the further order of such court or such guardian or other person, shall not be subject to the provisions of this article until one year after such minor attains the age of 18 years or until one year after the death of such minor, whichever occurs sooner. These accounts are not subject to dormant service charges.

(b) For purposes of this Code section, "property" includes any interest or dividends thereon. No banking or financial organization shall deduct a service charge from any account on which there has been no deposit or withdrawal for 12 or more months or otherwise impose a service charge on any such account. A service charge may be imposed for 12 months immediately following a deposit to or withdrawal from any such account.

(c) No banking or financial organization may cease to accrue interest on any account from the date the account is declared dormant or inactive by such organization except in conformity with cessation of interest generally assessed upon active accounts. With respect to any property described in this subsection, a holder may not impose any charges due to dormancy or inactivity which differ from those imposed on active accounts or cease to pay interest unless:

(1) For property in excess of $50.00, the holder, no more than three months before the initial imposition of those charges or cessation of interest, has given written notice to the owner of the amount of those charges at the last known address of the owner stating that those charges will be imposed or that interest will cease, but the notice provided in this paragraph need not be given with respect to charges imposed or interest ceased before July 1, 1990; and

(2) The holder regularly imposes such charges or ceases payment of interest and does not regularly reverse or otherwise cancel them or retroactively credit interest with respect to such property.

(d) Any automatically renewable property to which this Code section applies is matured upon the expiration of its initial time period. However, in the case of any renewal to which the owner consents at or about the time of renewal by communicating in writing with the banking or financial organization or otherwise indicates consent as specified in subsection (a) of this Code section, the property is matured upon the expiration of the last time period for which consent was given. If, at the time provided for delivery in subsection (e) of Code Section 44-12-214, a penalty or forfeiture in the payment of interest would result from the delivery of the property, the time for delivery is extended until the time when no penalty or forfeiture would result.

§ 44-12-198 - When fund under life or endowment insurance policy or annuity contract presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-198 (2010)
44-12-198. When fund under life or endowment insurance policy or annuity contract presumed abandoned


(a) Funds held or owing under any life or endowment insurance policy or annuity contract which has matured or terminated are presumed abandoned if unclaimed for more than five years after the funds became due and payable as established from the records of the insurance company holding or owing the funds, except that property described in paragraph (2) of subsection (c) of this Code section is presumed abandoned if unclaimed for more than two years.

(b) If a person other than the insured or annuitant is entitled to the funds and no address of the person is known to the company or it is not definite and certain from the records of the company who is entitled to the funds, it is presumed that the last known address of the person entitled to the funds is the same as the last known address of the insured or annuitant according to the records of the company.

(c) For purposes of this Code section, a life or endowment insurance policy or annuity contract not matured by actual proof of the death of the insured or annuitant according to the records of the company is deemed matured and the proceeds due and payable if:

(1) The company knows that the insured or annuitant has died; or

(2) If all of the following conditions are met:

(A) The insured has attained, or would have attained if he were living, the limiting age under the mortality table on which the reserve is based;

(B) The policy was in force at the time the insured attained, or would have attained, the limiting age specified in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph; and

(C) Neither the insured nor any other person appearing to have an interest in the policy within the preceding two years, according to the records of the company concerning the policy or otherwise, indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file prepared by an employee of the company.

(d) For purposes of this Code section, the application of an automatic premium loan provision or other nonforfeiture provision contained in an insurance policy does not prevent a policy from being matured or terminated under subsection (a) of this Code section if the insured has died or the insured or the beneficiaries of the policy otherwise have become entitled to the proceeds thereof before the depletion of the cash surrender value of a policy by the application of that provision.

(e) Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, if the company learns of the death of the insured or annuitant and the beneficiary has not communicated with the insurer within four months after the death, the company shall take reasonable steps to locate the beneficiary and pay the proceeds to the beneficiary.

(f) On and after January 1, 1991, every change of beneficiary form issued by an insurance company under any life or endowment insurance policy or annuity contract to an insured or owner who is a resident of this state must request the following information:

(1) The name of each beneficiary or, if a class of beneficiaries is named, the name of each current beneficiary in the class;

(2) The address of each beneficiary; and

(3) The relationship of each beneficiary to the insured.

§ 44-12-199 - When funds held or owing by utility presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-199 (2010)
44-12-199. When funds held or owing by utility presumed abandoned


The following funds held or owing by any utility are presumed abandoned:

(1) Any deposit made by a subscriber with a utility to secure payment for or any sum paid in advance for utility services to be furnished in this state, less any lawful deductions, that has remained unclaimed by the person appearing on the records of the utility entitled thereto for more than five years after the termination of the services for which the deposit or advance payment was made; and

(2) Any sum which a utility has been ordered to refund and which was received for utility services rendered in this state, together with any interest thereon, less any lawful deductions, that has remained unclaimed by the person appearing on the records of the utility entitled thereto for more than five years after the date it became payable in accordance with the final determination or order providing for the refund unless the regulatory body having jurisdiction over the utility has provided by order for a different disposition of such unclaimed funds.

§ 44-12-200 - When unclaimed court ordered refund from business association presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-200 (2010)
44-12-200. When unclaimed court ordered refund from business association presumed abandoned


Except to the extent otherwise ordered by a court or administrative agency of competent jurisdiction, any sum that a business association has been ordered to refund by a court or administrative agency which has remained unclaimed by the owner for more than five years after it became payable in accordance with the final determination or order providing for the refund, regardless of whether the final determination or order requires any person entitled to a refund to make a claim for it, is presumed abandoned.

§ 44-12-201 - When undistributed dividends and distributions of business associations presumed abandoned; when intangible interest in business associations presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-201 (2010)
44-12-201. When undistributed dividends and distributions of business associations presumed abandoned; when intangible interest in business associations presumed abandoned


(a) Pursuant to Code Section 44-12-193, any dividend, profit, distribution, interest, payment on principal, or other sum held or owing by a business association for or to its shareholder, certificate holder, member, bondholder, or other security holder, or a participating patron of a cooperative, who has not claimed it, corresponded in writing concerning it, or otherwise indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file with the association within five years after the date prescribed for payment or delivery is presumed abandoned.
(b)(1) Pursuant to Code Section 44-12-193, any intangible interest in a business association, as evidenced by the stock records or membership records of the association, is presumed abandoned if the interest in the association is owned by a person who for more than five years has neither claimed a dividend or other sum referred to in subsection (a) of this Code section nor corresponded in writing with the association and the association does not know the location of the owner at the end of such five-year period. With respect to such interest, the business association shall be deemed the holder.

(2) All intangible property, including but not limited to securities, principal, interest, dividends, or other earnings thereon, less any lawful charges, held by a business association; federal, state, or local government or governmental subdivision, agency, or entity; or any other person or entity, regardless of where the holder may be found, if the owner has not claimed such property or corresponded in writing with the holder concerning the property within five years after the date prescribed for payment or delivery by the issuer unless the holder is a state that has taken custody pursuant to its own unclaimed property laws, in which case no additional period of holding beyond that of such state is necessary pursuant to this subsection, is presumed abandoned and subject to the custody of this state as unclaimed property if:

(A) The last known address of the owner is unknown; and

(B) The person or entity originating or issuing the intangible property is this state or any political subdivision of this state or is incorporated, organized, created, or otherwise located in this state.

(3) The provisions of paragraph (2) of this subsection shall not apply to property which is or may be presumed abandoned and subject to the custody of this state pursuant to any other provision of law containing a dormancy period different from that prescribed in paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(4) The provisions of this subsection shall apply to all property held on April 13, 1992, or at any time thereafter, regardless of when such property became or becomes presumptively abandoned.

(c) Pursuant to Code Section 44-12-193, any dividends or other distributions held for or owing to a person at the time the stock or other security to which they attach are presumed abandoned also shall be presumed abandoned as of the same time.

(d) For the purposes of subsections (a) and (b) of this Code section, a record of the sending of a federal Internal Revenue Service Form 1099, or its equivalent, to the persons enumerated in those subsections and a record of its not being returned by the United States Postal Service, or its successor, shall be an indication of interest.

§ 44-12-202 - When unclaimed property distributed in course of dissolution or liquidation of a person presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-202 (2010)
44-12-202. When unclaimed property distributed in course of dissolution or liquidation of a person presumed abandoned


All property distributable in the course of a voluntary or involuntary dissolution or liquidation of a person that remains unclaimed by the person entitled thereto, within one year after the date of final distribution or liquidation, shall be presumed abandoned.

§ 44-12-203 - When intangible property held in fiduciary capacity for benefit of another, and income derived therefrom, presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-203 (2010)
44-12-203. When intangible property held in fiduciary capacity for benefit of another, and income derived therefrom, presumed abandoned


(a) Intangible property and any income or increment derived therefrom held in a fiduciary capacity for the benefit of another person is presumed abandoned unless the owner, within five years after it has become payable or distributable, has increased or decreased the principal, accepted payment of principal or income, communicated concerning the property, or otherwise indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file prepared by the fiduciary.

(b) Funds in an individual retirement account or a retirement plan for self-employed individuals or similar account or plan established pursuant to the internal revenue laws of the United States are not payable or distributable within the meaning of subsection (a) of this Code section unless, under the terms of the account or plan, distribution of all or part of the funds would then be mandatory.

(c) For the purpose of this Code section, a person who holds property as an agent for a business association is deemed to hold the property in a fiduciary capacity for a business association alone, unless the agreement between him and the business association provides otherwise.

(d) For the purposes of this article, a person who is deemed to hold property in a fiduciary capacity for a business association alone is the holder of the property only insofar as the interest of the business association in the property is concerned, and the business association is the holder of the property insofar as the interest of any other person in the property is concerned.

§ 44-12-204 - When intangible property held for owner by state or federal entity presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-204 (2010)
44-12-204. When intangible property held for owner by state or federal entity presumed abandoned


All intangible property held for the owner by any state or federal court, government, governmental subdivision or agency, public corporation, or public authority which remains unclaimed by the owner for more than five years after becoming payable or distributable is presumed abandoned.

§ 44-12-205 - When gift certificate or credit memo presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-205 (2010)
44-12-205. When gift certificate or credit memo presumed abandoned


(a) A gift certificate or a credit memo issued in the ordinary course of an issuer's business which remains unclaimed by the owner for more than five years after becoming payable or distributable is presumed abandoned.

(b) In the case of a gift certificate, the amount presumed abandoned is the price paid by the purchaser for the gift certificate. In the case of a credit memo, the amount presumed abandoned is the amount credited to the recipient of the memo.

§ 44-12-206 - When unpaid wages presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-206 (2010)
44-12-206. When unpaid wages presumed abandoned


Unpaid wages, including wages represented by unpresented payroll checks owing in the ordinary course of the holder's business, that have remained unclaimed by the owner for more than one year after becoming payable are presumed abandoned.

§ 44-12-207 - When employee benefit trust distributions and income thereon presumed abandoned; exceptions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-207 (2010)
44-12-207. When employee benefit trust distributions and income thereon presumed abandoned; exceptions


(a) All employee benefit trust distributions and any income or other increment thereon are abandoned to this state under the provisions of this article if the owner has not, within five years after it becomes payable or distributable, accepted such distribution, corresponded in writing concerning such distribution, or otherwise indicated an interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file with the fiduciary of the trust or custodial fund or administrator of the plan under which such trust or fund is established.

(b) An employee benefit trust distribution and any income or other increment thereon shall not be presumed abandoned to this state under the provisions of this article if, at the time such distribution shall become payable to a participant in an employee benefit plan, such plan contains a provision for forfeiture, if the trustees of an employee benefit plan supported wholly or partially from public funds adopt a provision for forfeiture, or if such plan expressly authorizes the trustee to declare a forfeiture of a distribution to a beneficiary thereof who cannot be found after a period of time specified in such plan, and the trust or fund established under the plan has not terminated prior to the date on which such distribution would become forfeitable in accordance with such provision.

§ 44-12-208 - When funds held or owing by insurer or hospital, medical, or dental service corporation presumed abandoned; when sums payable on negotiable instrument for payment of claim under insura

O.C.G.A. 44-12-208 (2010)
44-12-208. When funds held or owing by insurer or hospital, medical, or dental service corporation presumed abandoned; when sums payable on negotiable instrument for payment of claim under insurance contract presumed abandoned


(a) Any funds held or owing by a fire, casualty, or any other insurer or surety as defined in Title 33 or a hospital, medical, or dental service corporation organized under Title 31 that are due and payable, as established from the records of the insurer or surety either to an insured, a principal, or other claimant under any insurance policy or contract shall be presumed abandoned if they have not been claimed or paid within five years after becoming due or payable. Funds payable according to the insurer's or surety's records are deemed due and payable although the policy or contract has not been surrendered as required.

(b) If a person other than the insured, the principal, or the claimant is entitled to the funds and no address of the person is known to the insurer or surety or if it is not definite and certain from the records of the insurer or surety what person is entitled to the funds, it is presumed that the last known address of the person entitled to the funds is the same as the last known address of the insured, the principal, or the claimant according to the records of the insurer or surety.

(c) Any sum for the payment of a claim under an insurance policy or contract, which sum is payable on a negotiable instrument on which the insurer is the maker or drawer shall be presumed abandoned if, within five years from the date payable, or from the date of issuance, if payable on demand, the owner has not:

(1) Negotiated the instrument;

(2) Corresponded in writing with the insurer concerning it; or

(3) Otherwise indicated an interest by a writing on file with the insurer.

§ 44-12-209 - Rent due on safe-deposit boxes; notice of opening of box and sealing of contents when contents deemed abandoned; delivery to commissioner

O.C.G.A. 44-12-209 (2010)
44-12-209. Rent due on safe-deposit boxes; notice of opening of box and sealing of contents when contents deemed abandoned; delivery to commissioner


(a) If the rental due on a safe-deposit box has not been paid for one year, the lessor shall send a notice by registered mail or statutory overnight delivery to the last known address of the lessee stating that the safe-deposit box will be opened and its contents stored at the expense of the lessee unless payment of the rental is made within 30 days. If the rental is not paid within 30 days from the mailing of the notice, the holder shall provide written notification to the commissioner of the drilling date not less than 30 days prior to this time. The commissioner may designate a representative to be present during the opening of the safe-deposit box. The safe-deposit box shall be opened in the presence of an officer of the lessor. The contents shall be sealed in a package by the officer who shall write on the outside the name of the lessee and the date of the opening. The officer shall execute a certificate reciting the name of the lessee, the date of the opening of the safe-deposit box, and a list of its contents. The certificate shall be included in the package and a copy of the certificate shall be sent by registered mail or statutory overnight delivery to the last known address of the lessee. The package shall then be placed in the general vaults of the lessor at a rental not exceeding the rental previously charged for the safe-deposit box.

(b) If the contents of the safe-deposit box have not been claimed within two years of the mailing of the certificate, the lessor may send a further notice to the last known address of the lessee stating that, unless the accumulated charges are paid within 30 days, the contents of the safe-deposit box will be delivered to the commissioner as abandoned property under the provisions of Code Section 44-12-214.

(c) The lessor shall submit to the commissioner a verified inventory of all of the contents of the safe-deposit box upon delivery of the contents of the safe-deposit box or such part thereof as shall be required by the commissioner under Code Section 44-12-214, but the lessor shall not deduct from any cash of the lessee in the safe-deposit box an amount equal to accumulated charges for rental but shall submit to the commissioner a verified statement of such charges and deductions. If there is no cash, or insufficient cash to pay accumulated charges, in the safe-deposit box, the commissioner shall remit to the lessor the charges or balance due, up to the value of the property in the safe-deposit box delivered to him, less any costs or expenses of sale; but, if the charges or balance due exceeds the value of such property, the commissioner shall remit only the value of the property, less costs or expenses of sale. Any accumulated charges for safe-deposit box rental paid by the commissioner to the lessor shall be deducted from the value of the property of the lessee delivered to the commissioner.

(d) On and after January 1, 1991, a copy of this Code section shall be printed on every contract for rental of a safe-deposit box.

§ 44-12-210 - Commencement of abandonment for certain property described in Code Section 44-12-197

O.C.G.A. 44-12-210 (2010)
44-12-210. Commencement of abandonment for certain property described in Code Section 44-12-197


The abandonment period of any property described in Code Section 44-12-197 that is automatically renewable shall commence upon the expiration of its initial time period except that, in the case of any renewal to which the owner consents at or about the time of renewal by communicating in writing with the person holding the property or otherwise indicating such consent as evidenced by a memorandum on file prepared by an employee, the abandonment period shall commence upon the expiration of the last time period for which consent was given.

§ 44-12-211 - When bequeathed property presumed abandoned; when person presumed dead without heirs or distributees and property presumed abandoned

O.C.G.A. 44-12-211 (2010)
44-12-211. When bequeathed property presumed abandoned; when person presumed dead without heirs or distributees and property presumed abandoned


(a) Property which has been bequeathed to any person shall be presumed abandoned if not claimed by that person or his heirs, legatees, or distributees within five years after the death of the testator unless the will makes provision in case of a lapse, failure, or rejection of the bequest for the disposition of the property.

(b) When a person owning property is not known for five successive years to be living and neither the person named, his heirs, or distributees can be located or proved for five successive years to have been living, he shall be presumed to have died without heirs or distributees and his property shall be presumed abandoned.

§ 44-12-212 - When property described in Code Section 44-12-193 not subject to this article

O.C.G.A. 44-12-212 (2010)
44-12-212. When property described in Code Section 44-12-193 not subject to this article


If specific property which is subject to the provisions of Code Section 44-12-193 is held for or owed or distributable to an owner whose last known address is in another state by a holder who is subject to the jurisdiction of that state, the specific property is not presumed abandoned in this state and subject to this article if:

(1) It may be claimed as abandoned or escheated under the laws of such other state; and

(2) The laws of such other state make reciprocal provision that similar specific property is not presumed abandoned or escheatable by such other state when held for or owed or distributable to an owner whose last known address is within this state by a holder who is subject to the jurisdiction of this state.

§ 44-12-213 - Cooperation with other states to audit or otherwise determine unclaimed property subject to claim; rules and procedure

O.C.G.A. 44-12-213 (2010)
44-12-213. Cooperation with other states to audit or otherwise determine unclaimed property subject to claim; rules and procedure


(a) The commissioner may enter into agreements with other states to exchange information needed to enable this or another state to audit or otherwise determine unclaimed property that is subject to a claim of custody. The commissioner by rule may require the reporting of information needed to enable compliance with agreements made pursuant to this Code section and may prescribe the form.

(b) To avoid conflicts between the commissioner's procedures and the procedures of administrators in other jurisdictions that enact the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act, the commissioner, so far as is consistent with the purposes, policies, and provisions of this article, before adopting, amending, or repealing rules, shall advise and consult with administrators in other jurisdictions that enact the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act and take into consideration the rules of administrators in other jurisdictions that enact the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act.

(c) The commissioner may join with other states to seek enforcement of this article against any person who is or may be holding property reportable under this article.

(d) At the request of another state, the Attorney General of this state may bring an action in the name of the administrator of the other state in any court of competent jurisdiction in this state to enforce the unclaimed property laws of the other state against the holder in this state of property subject to escheat or a claim of abandonment by the other state, if the other state has agreed to pay expenses incurred by the Attorney General in bringing that action.

(e) The commissioner may request that the attorney general of another state or any other person bring an action in the name of the commissioner in the other state. This state shall pay all expenses including attorney's fees in any action under this subsection. The commissioner may agree to pay the person bringing the action attorney's fees based in whole or in part on a percentage of the value of any property recovered in the action. Any expenses paid pursuant to this subsection may not be deducted from the amount that is subject to the claim by the owner under this article.

§ 44-12-214 - Report and remittance of persons holding property presumed abandoned under this article

O.C.G.A. 44-12-214 (2010)
LexisNexis Practice Insights

Unclaimed Property Audits

44-12-214. Report and remittance of persons holding property presumed abandoned under this article


(a) Except as provided in Article 17B of Title 10, every person holding funds or other property, tangible or intangible, presumed abandoned under this article shall report and remit to the commissioner with respect to the property as provided in this Code section.

(b) The report shall be verified and shall include:

(1) The name and social security or federal identification number, if known, and last known address, including ZIP Code, if any, of each person appearing from the records of the holder to be the owner of any property of the value of $50.00 or more presumed abandoned under this article;

(2) In case of unclaimed funds of insurance corporations, the full name of the insured or annuitant and any beneficiary, if known, and the last known address according to the insurance corporation's records;

(3) In the case of the contents of a safe-deposit box or other safekeeping repository or in the case of other tangible property, a description of the property and the place where it is held and may be inspected by the commissioner, and any amounts owing to the holder;

(4) The nature and identifying number, if any, or description of the property and the amount appearing from the records to be due, except that items of value under $50.00 each may be reported in aggregate;

(5) The date when the property became payable, demandable, or returnable, and the date of the last transaction with the owner with respect to the property; and

(6) Other information which the commissioner prescribes by rule as necessary for the administration of this article.

(c) If the person holding property presumed abandoned is a successor to other persons who previously held the property for the owner or if the holder has changed his name while holding the property, he shall file with his report all prior known names and addresses of each holder of the property.

(d) The report and remittance shall be filed before November 1 of each year as of June 30 next preceding, but the report and remittance of insurance corporations shall be filed before May 1 of each year as of December 31 next preceding. When property is evidenced by certificate of ownership as set forth in Code Section 44-12-201, the holder shall deliver to the commissioner a duplicate of any such certificate registered in the name of the commissioner at the time of report and remittance. The commissioner may postpone the reporting and remittance date upon written request by any person required to file a report.

(e) If the holder of property presumed abandoned under this article knows the whereabouts of the owner, the holder shall, before filing the annual report, communicate with the owner and take necessary steps to prevent abandonment from being presumed. All holders shall exercise due diligence, as defined in Code Section 44-12-192, at least 60 days but no more than 120 days prior to the submission of the report to ascertain the whereabouts of the owner if the holder has in its records an address for the apparent owner which the holder's records do not disclose to be inaccurate and the property has a value of $50.00 or more.

(f) Verification, if made by a partnership, shall be executed by a partner; if made by an unincorporated association or private corporation, by an officer; and if made by a public corporation, by its chief fiscal officer.

(g) The initial report and remittance filed under this Code section shall include all items of property that would have been presumed abandoned if this article had been in effect during the 15 year period preceding January 1, 1973.

(h) Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to require a utility to include in its initial report any item of money or property as to which the name of the owner and his last known address do not appear in the records maintained by the utility in accordance with rules or practices sanctioned by any state or federal regulatory body having jurisdiction over the utility.

§ 44-12-215 - Publication of "Georgia Unclaimed Property List"; contents of notice

O.C.G.A. 44-12-215 (2010)
44-12-215. Publication of "Georgia Unclaimed Property List"; contents of notice


(a) The commissioner shall cause to be published notice of the reports filed under Code Section 44-12-214, once a year in a newspaper of general circulation.

(b) The published notice shall be entitled the "Georgia Unclaimed Property List" and shall contain the names in alphabetical order and the internal identification number of persons listed in the report and entitled to notice within the county as provided in Code Section 44-12-214.

(c) The notice shall contain a statement that information concerning the amount or description of the property and the name of the holder may be obtained by any persons possessing an interest in the property by addressing an inquiry to the commissioner.

(d) The commissioner is not required to publish in such notice any item with a value of less than $50.00 unless he deems such publication to be in the public interest.

§ 44-12-216 - Assumption of custody by state; legal proceedings instituted by other state; reimbursements for costs to safe-deposit box holders

O.C.G.A. 44-12-216 (2010)
44-12-216. Assumption of custody by state; legal proceedings instituted by other state; reimbursements for costs to safe-deposit box holders


(a) Upon payment or delivery of abandoned property to the commissioner, the state shall assume custody and shall be responsible for the safekeeping of the property. Any person who pays or delivers abandoned property to the commissioner under this article is relieved of all liability, to the extent of the value of the property so paid or delivered, or for any claim which then exists or which thereafter may arise or be made with respect to the property. Any holder who has paid moneys to the commissioner pursuant to this article may reimburse any person appearing to such holder to be entitled thereto; and, upon proof of such payment and proof that the payee was entitled thereto, the commissioner shall forthwith reimburse the holder for the payment.

(b) In the event legal proceedings are instituted by any other state or states in any state or federal court with respect to unclaimed funds or abandoned property previously paid or delivered to the commissioner, the holder shall give written notification to the commissioner and the Attorney General of this state of such proceedings within ten days after service of process or at least ten days before the return date on which an answer or similar pleading is due or any extension thereof is secured by the holder. The Attorney General may take such action as he deems necessary or expedient to protect the interest of this state. The Attorney General, by written notice prior to the return date on which an answer or similar pleading is due or any extension thereof is secured by the holder, but in any event in reasonably sufficient time for the holder to comply with the directions received, shall either direct the holder actively to defend in the proceedings or direct that no defense be entered into the proceedings. If a direction is received from the Attorney General that the holder need not make a defense, this shall not preclude the holder from entering a defense in his own name if he should so choose. However, any defense made by the holder on his own initiative shall not entitle the holder to reimbursement for legal fees, costs, and other expenses as is provided in this Code section with respect to defenses made pursuant to the direction of the Attorney General. After the holder has actively defended in the proceedings pursuant to the direction of the Attorney General or has been notified in writing by the Attorney General that no defense need be made with respect to such funds, if a judgment is entered against the holder for any amount paid to the commissioner under this article, the commissioner, upon being furnished either proof of payment or satisfaction of such judgment, shall reimburse the holder the amount so paid. The commissioner shall also reimburse the holder for any legal fees, costs, and other directly related expenses incurred in legal proceedings undertaken pursuant to the direction of the Attorney General.

(c) Property removed from a safe-deposit box or other safekeeping repository that is received by the commissioner shall be subject to the holder's right under this Code section to be reimbursed for the actual cost of the opening and to any valid lien or contract providing for the holder to be reimbursed for unpaid rent or storage charges. The commissioner shall make the reimbursement to the holder out of the proceeds remaining after the deduction of the commissioner's selling costs.

§ 44-12-217 - Sale or destruction of property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-217 (2010)
44-12-217. Sale or destruction of property


(a) All abandoned property, other than money delivered to the commissioner under this article, shall, within three years after the delivery, be sold by him to the highest bidder at public sale in whatever city in the state affords, in his judgment, the most favorable market for the property involved. The commissioner may decline the highest bid and reoffer the property for sale if he considers the price bid insufficient. He need not offer any property for sale if, in his opinion, the probable cost of the sale exceeds the value of the property.

(b) Any sale held under this Code section shall be preceded by a single publication of notice thereof at least three weeks in advance of the sale in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the property is to be sold.

(c) At any sale conducted by the commissioner pursuant to this article, the purchaser shall receive title to the property purchased free from all claims of the owner or prior holder thereof and of all persons claiming through or under them. The commissioner shall execute all documents necessary to complete the transfer of title.

(d) If the commissioner determines after investigation that any property delivered under this article has insubstantial commercial value of less than $100.00, he may destroy or otherwise dispose of the property at any time. No action or proceeding may be maintained against the state or any officer or against any holder for or on account of any action taken by the commissioner pursuant to this subsection.

§ 44-12-218 - Disposition of funds received under article; authorized deductions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-218 (2010)
44-12-218. Disposition of funds received under article; authorized deductions


(a) All funds received under this article, including the proceeds from the sale of abandoned property under Code Section 44-12-217, shall forthwith be deposited by the commissioner in the general fund, except that the commissioner shall retain in a separate trust fund a sum sufficient from which he shall make prompt payment of claims duly allowed by him as provided in Code Section 44-12-220. Before making a deposit he shall record the name and last known address of each person appearing from the holders' reports to be entitled to the abandoned property and of the name and last known address of each insured person or annuitant and, with respect to each policy or contract listed in the report of an insurance corporation, its number, the name of the corporation, and the amount due.

(b) Before making any deposit to the credit of the general fund the commissioner may deduct:

(1) Any costs in connection with sale of abandoned property;

(2) Any costs of mailing and publication in connection with any abandoned property;

(3) Operating expenses;

(4) Amounts required to make payments to other states, during the next fiscal year, through reciprocity agreements; and

(5) Expenses for consulting services.

§ 44-12-219 - When commissioner may decline to receive certain property

O.C.G.A. 44-12-219 (2010)
44-12-219. When commissioner may decline to receive certain property


The commissioner, after receiving reports of property deemed abandoned pursuant to this article, may decline to receive any property reported which he deems to have a value less than the cost of giving notice and holding sale, or he may, if he deems it desirable because of the small sum involved, postpone taking possession until a sufficient sum accumulates. Unless the holder of the property is notified to the contrary within 120 days after filing the report required under Code Section 44-12-214, the commissioner shall be deemed to have elected to receive the custody of the property.

§ 44-12-220 - Claims for property paid or delivered to commissioner; procedure; destruction of records after seven years

O.C.G.A. 44-12-220 (2010)
44-12-220. Claims for property paid or delivered to commissioner; procedure; destruction of records after seven years


(a) A person, excluding another state, claiming an interest in any property paid or delivered to the commissioner may file with him a claim on a form prescribed by him and verified by the claimant.

(b) The commissioner shall consider each claim within 90 days after it is filed and give written notice to the claimant if the claim is denied in whole or in part. The notice may be given by mailing it to the last address, if any, stated in the claim as the address to which notices are to be sent. If no address for notices is stated in the claim, the notice may be mailed to the last address, if any, of the claimant as stated in the claim. No notice of denial need be given if the claim fails to state either the last address to which notices are to be sent or the address of the claimant.

(c) If a claim is allowed, the commissioner shall pay over or deliver to the claimant the property or the amount the commissioner actually received or the net proceeds if it has been sold by the commissioner. The owner is not entitled to receive income or other increments accruing after remittance to the commissioner.

(d) The commissioner may, after seven years following the receipt of property, destroy such records related to the property as deemed necessary; and after said seven-year period any claim relating to such property must be fully substantiated by a claimant, without recourse to such records.

§ 44-12-221 - Appeal of commissioner's decision

O.C.G.A. 44-12-221 (2010)
44-12-221. Appeal of commissioner's decision


Any person aggrieved by a decision of the commissioner or whose claim the commissioner has failed to act upon within 90 days after the filing of the claim may appeal such decision or lack of decision to the Superior Court of Fulton County. The proceeding shall be brought within 90 days after the decision of the commissioner or within 180 days of the filing of the claim if the commissioner fails to act. The appeal shall be tried de novo without a jury.

§ 44-12-222 - Determination of claim; hearing

O.C.G.A. 44-12-222 (2010)
44-12-222. Determination of claim; hearing


(a) The commissioner shall consider any claim filed under this article and may hold a hearing and receive evidence concerning it. If a hearing is held, he shall prepare a finding and a decision in writing on each claim filed, stating the substance of any evidence heard by him and the reasons for his decision. The decision shall be a public record.

(b) If the claim is allowed, the commissioner shall make payment forthwith. The claim shall be paid without deduction for costs of notice.

§ 44-12-223 - Effect of periods of limitation

O.C.G.A. 44-12-223 (2010)
44-12-223. Effect of periods of limitation


The expiration of any period of time specified by statute or court order, during which an action or proceeding may be commenced or enforced to obtain payment of a claim for money or property, shall not prevent the money or property from being presumed abandoned property nor affect any duty to file a report required by this article or to pay or deliver abandoned property to the commissioner.

§ 44-12-224 - Agreement and fees for recovery or assistance in recovery of property reported and delivered to commissioner

O.C.G.A. 44-12-224 (2010)
44-12-224. Agreement and fees for recovery or assistance in recovery of property reported and delivered to commissioner


(a) All agreements to pay compensation to recover or assist in the recovery of property reported and delivered to the commissioner under this article shall be unenforceable for 24 months after the date of payment or the delivery of property to the commissioner.

(b) The fees charged by any person, firm, or corporation to recover or assist in the recovery for and on behalf of a claimant of property reported and delivered to the commissioner under this article shall not exceed 10 percent of the value of the property recovered. All funds or property located by a person to be compensated by the payment of such a fee shall be paid or delivered directly to the owner and may not be paid or delivered to the person to receive the fee whether pursuant to a duly executed power of attorney or otherwise.

§ 44-12-225 - Confidentiality of information or records required by this article

O.C.G.A. 44-12-225 (2010)
44-12-225. Confidentiality of information or records required by this article


Any information or records required to be furnished to the commissioner shall be confidential except as otherwise necessary in the proper administration of this article.

§ 44-12-226 - Expiration of limitation specified by contract, statute, or court order not to affect duties required by this article

O.C.G.A. 44-12-226 (2010)
44-12-226. Expiration of limitation specified by contract, statute, or court order not to affect duties required by this article


The expiration, before or after July 1, 1990, of any period of time specified by contract, statute, or court order during which a claim for money or property can be made or during which an action or proceeding may be commenced or enforced to obtain payment of a claim for money or to recover property, does not prevent the money or property from being presumed abandoned nor affect any duty to file a report or to pay or deliver abandoned property to the commissioner as required by this article.

§ 44-12-227 - Penalties

O.C.G.A. 44-12-227 (2010)
44-12-227. Penalties


(a) A person, firm, or corporation who willfully fails to render any report or perform other duties required under this article shall pay a civil penalty of $100.00 for each day the report is withheld or the duty is not performed, but not more than $5,000.00.

(b) A person, firm, or corporation who willfully fails to pay or deliver property to the commissioner as required under this article shall pay a civil penalty equal to 25 percent of the value of the property that should have been paid or delivered.

(c) A person, firm, or corporation who willfully refuses after written demand by the commissioner to pay or deliver as required by this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $1,000.00 or by imprisonment not to exceed six months or by both such fine and imprisonment.

§ 44-12-228 - Maintenance and retention of records

O.C.G.A. 44-12-228 (2010)
44-12-228. Maintenance and retention of records


(a) Every financial institution, banking organization, and business association and all other holders required to file a report under Code Section 44-12-214 shall retain all books, records, and documents necessary to establish the accuracy and compliance of such report for ten years after the property becomes reportable, except to the extent that shorter time is provided in accordance with Article 5 of Chapter 18 of Title 50, the "Georgia Records Act," or in subsection (b) of this Code section or by rule of the commissioner. As to any property for which it has obtained the last known address of the owner, the holder shall maintain a record of the name and last known address of the owner for the same ten-year period.

(b) Any business associations that sell in this state their traveler's checks, money orders, or other similar written instruments, other than third-party bank checks on which the business association is directly liable, or that provides such instruments to others for sale in this state shall maintain a record of those instruments while they remain outstanding, indicating the state and date of issue for three years after the date the property is reportable.

§ 44-12-229 - Commissioner may compel filing of report and may examine records; failure to maintain records

O.C.G.A. 44-12-229 (2010)
44-12-229. Commissioner may compel filing of report and may examine records; failure to maintain records


(a) The commissioner may require any person who has not filed a report to file a verified report stating whether or not the person is holding any unclaimed property reportable or deliverable under this article.

(b) The commissioner may at reasonable times and upon reasonable notice examine the records of any person to determine whether the person has complied with the provisions of this article. The commissioner may conduct the examination even if the person believes it is not in possession of any property reportable or deliverable under this article.

(c) If a holder fails to maintain the records required by Code Section 44-12-228 and the records of the holder available for the periods subject to this article are insufficient to permit the preparation of a report, the holder shall be required to report and pay such amounts as may reasonably be estimated from any available records.

§ 44-12-230 - Employment of independent consultant

O.C.G.A. 44-12-230 (2010)
44-12-230. Employment of independent consultant


The commissioner may employ the services of such independent consultants, and other persons possessing specialized skills or knowledge as he shall deem necessary or appropriate for the administration of this article, including, but not limited to, valuation, maintenance, upkeep, management, sale and conveyance of property, and determination of sources of unreported abandoned property.

§ 44-12-231 - Enforcement of article; properties not paid over on a timely basis

O.C.G.A. 44-12-231 (2010)
44-12-231. Enforcement of article; properties not paid over on a timely basis


(a) The commissioner may bring an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to enforce this article. Notwithstanding the provisions of Code Section 44-12-214, the commissioner shall commence enforcement for the reporting, payment, or delivery of property presumed abandoned under this article, with the exception of property held in a fiduciary capacity, not later than seven years from the date the property is presumed abandoned.

(b) Properties due and owing under this Code section and not paid over to the commissioner on a timely basis shall be paid upon notice and demand by the commissioner or the commissioner's delegate and shall be assessed and collected in the manner provided for assessment and collection of state taxes in Chapters 2, 3, and 4 of Title 48. The commissioner is authorized to issue an execution for the amounts due as provided in Code Section 48-3-1. The remedies specified in this subsection shall be in addition to all other remedies provided for in this article.

§ 44-12-232 - Article does not relieve holder of duty that arose before July 1, 1990

O.C.G.A. 44-12-232 (2010)
44-12-232. Article does not relieve holder of duty that arose before July 1, 1990


(a) This article does not relieve the holder of a duty that arose before July 1, 1990, to report, pay, or deliver property. A holder who did not comply with the law in effect before July 1, 1990, is subject to the applicable enforcement and penalty provisions that then existed and they are continued in effect for the purpose of this subsection, subject to Code Section 44-12-227.

(b) The initial report filed under this article for property that was not required to be reported before July 1, 1990, but which is subject to this article must include all items of property that would have been presumed abandoned during the ten-year period preceding July 1, 1990, as if this article had been in effect during that period.

§ 44-12-233 - Receipt of securities under this article

O.C.G.A. 44-12-233 (2010)
44-12-233. Receipt of securities under this article


Whenever the commissioner shall receive securities under this article in the name of the owner, he shall forthwith take appropriate action to transfer the record of ownership of said securities into the name of the commissioner.

§ 44-12-234 - Property in foreign country or arising out of foreign transaction

O.C.G.A. 44-12-234 (2010)
44-12-234. Property in foreign country or arising out of foreign transaction


This article does not apply to any property held, due, and owing in a foreign country and arising out of a foreign transaction.

§ 44-12-235 - Rules and regulations

O.C.G.A. 44-12-235 (2010)
44-12-235. Rules and regulations


The commissioner may make necessary rules and regulations to carry out the provisions of this article.

§ 44-12-236 - Alternative method of disposition with respect to certain dividends or capital credits which are presumed abandoned; definitions; procedures

O.C.G.A. 44-12-236 (2010)
44-12-236. Alternative method of disposition with respect to certain dividends or capital credits which are presumed abandoned; definitions; procedures


(a) As used in the Code section, the term:

(1) "Approved uses" means:

(A) Donated to an Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3) organization serving in the electric membership corporation's service area;

(B) Used in support of education in the electric membership corporation's service area; or

(C) Used for economic development purposes in the electric membership corporation's service area.

(2) "Electric membership corporation's service area" means any county in which the electric membership corporation provides electric service and any county adjacent thereto.

(b) All patronage dividends or capital credits presumed abandoned pursuant to this article in a given calendar year that are held by an electric membership corporation organized and operating pursuant to Article 4 of Chapter 3 of Title 46 may, in lieu of payment of delivery to the commissioner pursuant to this article, be donated for approved uses if the electric membership corporation has:

(1) Maintained for at least six months on the electric membership corporation's website or on a public posting in the electric membership corporation's main office a list of the names and last known addresses of all owners of property held by the electric membership corporation which has been presumed abandoned, together with instructions on how to claim such property; and

(2) Published in the legal organ in the county in which the electric membership corporation's main office is located notice of the last date to claim property that has been presumed abandoned. Such notice shall be published within three to six months prior to the last date to claim the property and shall state that the names of the owners may be found at the electric membership corporation's website or the main office.

ARTICLE 6 - FALLING PECANS

§ 44-12-240 - Definitions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-240 (2010)
44-12-240. Definitions


As used in this article, the term:

(1) "Harvesting season" means that portion of each calendar year beginning on October 1 and ending on December 31.

(2) "Owner" means the person, firm, or corporation owning the land on which pecan trees are growing or the person, firm, or corporation having legal possession of the land.

§ 44-12-241 - Pecans falling on public right of way -- Ownership during harvest season; picking pecans from tree limbs without permission; penalty

O.C.G.A. 44-12-241 (2010)
44-12-241. Pecans falling on public right of way -- Ownership during harvest season; picking pecans from tree limbs without permission; penalty


(a) When pecan trees are grown on private property and the branches of the trees extend over public roads, streets, or highway rights of way, any pecans falling from any such pecan trees onto the public rights of way shall be the property of the owner of the pecan trees until the end of the harvesting season; and it shall be unlawful for any person to remove the pecans from any public rights of way during the harvesting season without the permission of the owner of the trees.

(b) It shall be unlawful for any person, without the permission of the owner of pecan trees grown on private property, to pick or otherwise remove any pecans from the limbs or branches of the trees or to cause pecans to fall from the trees.

(c) Any person who violates this Code section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

§ 44-12-242 - Pecans falling on public right of way -- Removal out of harvest season

O.C.G.A. 44-12-242 (2010)
44-12-242. Pecans falling on public right of way -- Removal out of harvest season


Any pecans remaining on public roads, streets, or highway rights of way during any portion of the calendar year except the harvesting season shall be deemed to be abandoned by the owner of the pecans; and it shall not be unlawful for any person to remove such pecans from such public rights of way.

§ 44-12-243 - Effect of article on maintenance of public rights of way; harvest on limited access highways

O.C.G.A. 44-12-243 (2010)
44-12-243. Effect of article on maintenance of public rights of way; harvest on limited access highways


This article shall not be construed to prohibit employees of the Department of Transportation or the employees of a county or municipality from engaging in normal activities of maintenance on the rights of way of public roads, streets, or highways; nor shall this article be construed to grant the owner of any pecan trees the right to harvest pecans from the right of way of any interstate or other limited access highway.

ARTICLE 7 - PROTECTION OF AMERICAN INDIAN HUMAN REMAINS AND BURIAL OBJECTS

PART 1 - AMERICAN INDIAN HUMAN REMAINS AND BURIAL OBJECTS HELD BY MUSEUMS

§ 44-12-260 - Definitions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-260 (2010)
44-12-260. Definitions


As used in this article, the term:

(1) "American Indian" means an individual who is a member of a nation, tribe, band, group, or community that was indigenous to Georgia; is a descendant of persons named as American Indians in the Georgia Senate Bill 89, enacted during the legislative session of 1839 (Ga. L. 1839, p. 374); or is a descendant of persons included in the United States Indian Claims Commission, Docket 21, 1962, and those sequel dockets pertaining to the Creek Nation east of the Mississippi River.

(2) "American Indian tribe" means any nation, tribe, band, group, or community that was indigenous to Georgia and is recognized as eligible for the special programs and services provided by the United States to Indians because of its status as Indian; or whose members are descendants of American Indians indigenous to Georgia.

(3) "Burial object" means an object that, as a part of the death rite or ceremony of a culture, is reasonably believed to have been placed with individual human remains either at the time of death or later. Such term includes any item defined in paragraph (4) of Code Section 36-72-2 and may also include but not be limited to urns; whole or broken ceramic, metal, or glass vessels; chipped stone tools; ground stone tools; worked bone and shell items; clothing; medals; buttons; jewelry; firearms; edged weapons; and the caskets or containers for the human remains.

(4) "Burial site" or "burial ground" means an area dedicated to and used for interment of human remains. The fact that the area was used for burial purposes shall be evidence that it was set aside for burial purposes. Such a site may be any natural or prepared physical location, whether originally below, on, or above the surface of the earth, into which, as a part of the death rite or ceremony of a culture, individual human remains are deposited. Such term does not include any cemetery required to be registered with the Secretary of State pursuant to Code Section 10-14-4.

(5) "Council" means the Council on American Indian Concerns established by Code Section 44-12-280.

(6) "Cultural affiliation" means that there is a relationship of shared group identity which can be reasonably traced historically or prehistorically between a present day Indian tribe and an identifiable earlier group.

(7) "Human remains" means the bodies of deceased human beings in any stage of decomposition, including cremated remains.

(8) "Inventory" means a simple itemized list that summarizes the information called for by this article.

(9) "Museum" means any institution or state or local government agency or any institution of higher learning that is not included in paragraph (8) of Section 2 of Public Law 101-601.

§ 44-12-261 - Inventory of American Indian human remains or burial objects in possession of museum; additional documentation upon request of American Indian tribe; construction of part; extension of

O.C.G.A. 44-12-261 (2010)
44-12-261. Inventory of American Indian human remains or burial objects in possession of museum; additional documentation upon request of American Indian tribe; construction of part; extension of time to complete inventory and identification; notification of affected tribes


(a) Any museum having possession or control over holdings or collections of American Indian human remains or burial objects shall compile an inventory of such items and, to the extent possible based on information possessed by such museum, identify the geographical and cultural affiliation of such items.

(b) The inventory and identification required under subsection (a) of this Code section shall be:

(1) Completed in consultation with American Indian tribes;

(2) Completed by not later than July 1, 1997; and

(3) Made available to the Secretary of State and the council both during the time conducted and afterward.

(c) Upon the request of any American Indian tribe, a museum shall supply additional available documentation to supplement the information required by subsection (a) of this Code section. Such documentation shall consist of a summary of existing museum records, including inventories or catalogs, relevant studies, and other pertinent data for the limited purpose of determining the geographical origin, cultural affiliation, and basic facts surrounding the acquisition and accession of American Indian human remains and burial objects subject to this Code section.

(d) This part shall not be construed to be an authorization for the initiation of new scientific studies of human remains and burial objects or the initiation of any other method of acquiring or preserving additional scientific information from such remains and objects.

(e) Any museum which has made a good faith effort to carry out an inventory and identification under this Code section, but which has been unable to complete the process, may appeal to the Secretary of State for an extension of the time requirement set forth in paragraph (2) of subsection (b) of this Code section. The Secretary of State may once grant an extension of up to one year for any such museum upon a finding of good faith effort. An indication of good faith shall include the development of a plan to carry out the inventory and identification process.

(f) If the cultural affiliation of any particular American Indian human remains or burial objects is determined pursuant to this Code section, the museum concerned shall not later than six months after the completion of the inventory notify the affected American Indian tribes. The notice shall include information:

(1) Which identifies or describes each American Indian human remains or burial object and the circumstances surrounding its acquisition;

(2) Which lists the human remains or burial objects that are clearly identifiable as to tribal origin; and

(3) Which lists the American Indian human remains and burial objects that are not clearly identifiable as being culturally affiliated with that Indian tribe, but which, given the totality of circumstances surrounding acquisition of the remains or objects, are determined by a reasonable belief to be remains or objects culturally affiliated with the Indian tribe.

A copy of each notice shall be sent to the Secretary of State and to the Council on American Indian Concerns.

§ 44-12-262 - Return of human remains and burial objects upon request of known lineal descendant or tribe; immunity of museum for returns made in good faith; private collections of artifacts not con

O.C.G.A. 44-12-262 (2010)
44-12-262. Return of human remains and burial objects upon request of known lineal descendant or tribe; immunity of museum for returns made in good faith; private collections of artifacts not containing burial objects


(a) Upon the request of a known lineal descendant of the particular American Indian or, if a cultural affiliation is established between a particular American Indian tribe and particular human remains or burial objects, the request of the tribe, and pursuant to subsections (d) and (e) of this Code section, the museum shall expeditiously return such remains and objects. However, no human remains or burial objects shall be repatriated outside of the State of Georgia unless claimed by a known lineal descendant of the deceased person, as proved by clear and convincing evidence.

(b) The return of human remains and burial objects covered by this part shall be in consultation with the requesting descendant or tribe to determine the place and manner of delivery of such items.

(c) Where cultural affiliation between an American Indian tribe and human remains or burial objects has not been established in an inventory prepared pursuant to Code Section 44-12-261, such American Indian tribe can establish cultural affiliation by a preponderance of the evidence based upon geographical, kinship, biological, archeological, anthropological, linguistic, folkloric, oral tradition, historical, or other relevant information or expert opinion.

(d) If either a lineal descendant of the deceased person or an American Indian tribe culturally affiliated with human remains or burial objects requests the return of such American Indian human remains or burial objects, the museum shall expeditiously return such items unless such items are indispensable for the completion of a specific scientific study, the outcome of which would be of major benefit to the State of Georgia, as determined by the Secretary of State and the council. Such items shall be returned by no later than 120 days after the date on which scientific study is completed. If the Secretary of State and the council cannot agree on the benefit of the scientific study, then they shall each appoint one representative to serve on a committee created and convened for the sole purpose of resolving the issue. The Governor shall appoint a person to chair the committee. Such person may not be an employee of the Secretary of State or a member of the council. The chairperson may vote to break a tie.

(e) When there are multiple requests for repatriation of any American Indian human remains or burial objects and after complying with the requirements of this part the museum cannot clearly determine which requesting party is the most appropriate claimant, the museum may retain such item until the requesting parties agree upon its disposition or the dispute is resolved pursuant to the provisions of this article or in a court of competent jurisdiction.

(f) Any museum which repatriates any American Indian human remains or burial objects in good faith pursuant to this part shall not be liable for claims by an aggrieved party or for claims of breach of fiduciary duty or public trust.

(g) Nothing in this Code section shall require private citizens to surrender artifact collections that do not contain burial objects.

§ 44-12-263 - Monitoring and review of inventory, identification, and repatriation activities

O.C.G.A. 44-12-263 (2010)
44-12-263. Monitoring and review of inventory, identification, and repatriation activities


The council shall monitor and review the implementation of inventory and identification process and repatriation activities required under Code Sections 44-12-261 and 44-12-262 to ensure a fair, objective consideration and assessment of all available relevant information and evidence.

§ 44-12-264 - Penalties for violation of Code Sections 44-12-261 and 44-12-262

O.C.G.A. 44-12-264 (2010)
44-12-264. Penalties for violation of Code Sections 44-12-261 and 44-12-262


(a) Any museum which fails to comply with the provisions of Code Section 44-12-261 or 44-12-262 shall be subject to a civil penalty to be imposed by the council. The amount of such penalty shall be based upon:

(1) The archeological, historical, or commercial value of the item involved;

(2) The damages suffered, both economic and noneconomic, by an aggrieved party; and

(3) The number of violations that have occurred

but in no event shall the aggregate amount of such civil penalty exceed $5,000.00.

(b) Whenever the council proposes to subject a person to the imposition of a civil penalty under this Code section, the council shall notify such person in writing:

(1) Setting forth the date, facts, and nature of each act or omission with which the person is charged;

(2) Specifically identifying the particular provision or provisions of the Code section, rule, regulation, order, license, or registration certificate involved in the violation; and

(3) Advising of each penalty which the council proposes to impose and its amount.

Such written notice shall be sent by registered or certified mail or statutory overnight delivery by the council to the last known address of such person. The person so notified shall be granted an opportunity to show in writing, within such reasonable period as the council shall by rule or regulation prescribe, why such penalty should not be imposed. The notice shall also advise such person that, upon failure to pay the civil penalty subsequently determined by the council, if any, the penalty may be collected by civil action. Any person upon whom a civil penalty is imposed may appeal such action pursuant to Chapter 13 of Title 50, the "Georgia Administrative Procedure Act."

(c) A civil penalty finally determined under this Code section may be collected by civil action in the event that such penalty is not paid as required. On the request of the council, the Attorney General is authorized to institute a civil action to collect a penalty imposed pursuant to this Code section. The Attorney General shall have the exclusive power to compromise, mitigate, or remit such civil penalties as are referred to the Attorney General for collection.

(d) All moneys collected from civil penalties shall be paid to the state for deposit in the general fund.

PART 2 - COUNCIL ON AMERICAN INDIAN CONCERNS

§ 44-12-280 - Council on American Indian Concerns created; membership; assignment for administrative purposes; terms of office; removal for failure to attend meetings

O.C.G.A. 44-12-280 (2010)
44-12-280. Council on American Indian Concerns created; membership; assignment for administrative purposes; terms of office; removal for failure to attend meetings


(a) As used in this Code section, the term:

(1) "Anthropologist" means a physical anthropologist who holds a Ph.D. in physical anthropology with demonstrated experience in on-site identification of human skeletal remains and who is currently active in the profession.

(2) "Archeologist" means any person who:

(A) Is a member of or meets the criteria for membership in the Society of Professional Archaeologists and can demonstrate experience or formal training in the excavation and interpretation of human graves; or

(B) Was employed on July 1, 1992, by the state or by any county or municipal governing authority as an archeologist.

(b) There is created the Council on American Indian Concerns, which shall consist of nine members to be appointed by the Governor. Five members shall be American Indians. Three members shall represent the scientific community and shall include at least one archeologist and one anthropologist; provided, however, that if no anthropologist can be identified who is willing to serve, then the membership reserved to an anthropologist shall be filled by a person who holds a master's degree or a higher degree in the field of anthropology and is currently active in the profession. One member shall be selected from the general public at large. All members of the council shall be legal residents of the State of Georgia. The Governor shall consult the tribal groups located in the state recognized by general law, the Human Relations Commission, the Georgia Council of Professional Archaeologists, the Society for Georgia Archaeology, and the Department of Natural Resources for recommendations before appointing members of the council.

(c) The council is assigned to the Governor's Office of Planning and Budget for administrative purposes only, as specified in Code Section 50-4-3.

(d) The terms of appointment for members of the council shall be as follows: two American Indians, one scientist, and one representative of the general public shall be appointed for an initial term of three years; two American Indians, one scientist, and one representative of the general public shall be appointed for an initial term of two years; and one scientist shall be appointed for an initial term of one year. The member who represents the general public and who has the least time left in his or her term on July 1, 2002, shall cease to be a member on that date, and a member who is an American Indian shall be appointed to take office on that day for a term of three years. The Governor shall specify the length of the initial term of the councilmembers in their initial appointments. After such initial terms, all councilmembers shall be appointed for terms of three years. Active and continued participation by members of the council is needed. The Governor may remove any member who fails to attend three regularly scheduled consecutive meetings. Councilmembers may succeed themselves.

§ 44-12-281 - Compensation and expenses

O.C.G.A. 44-12-281 (2010)
44-12-281. Compensation and expenses


Councilmembers shall receive no compensation for their services but shall be reimbursed for their actual travel and expenses necessarily incurred in the performance of their duties for each day such member of the council is in attendance at a meeting of the council.

§ 44-12-282 - Chairperson; meetings; quorum

O.C.G.A. 44-12-282 (2010)
44-12-282. Chairperson; meetings; quorum


Annually, the councilmembers shall elect a chairperson for a term of one year. The council shall meet as frequently as needed to perform its duties, upon the call of the council chairperson. Five councilmembers shall constitute a quorum to conduct business.

§ 44-12-283 - Powers and duties of council

O.C.G.A. 44-12-283 (2010)
44-12-283. Powers and duties of council


The council shall have the following powers and duties:

(1) To serve as a resource for the notification of relatives under paragraph (4) of Code Section 36-72-5, relating to notification of relatives pursuant to obtaining a permit for land use change or disturbance; provided, however, that failure of the council to respond within 30 days to a request to serve as a resource for the notification shall not prevent the notification process or any permit process from taking place;

(2) To receive notice of permits issued and contracts issued under subsection (c) of Code Section 12-3-52 that affect aboriginal, prehistoric, or American Indian burial sites;

(3) To monitor the inventory and identification process conducted under Code Section 44-12-261 to ensure a fair, objective consideration and assessment of all available relevant information and evidence;

(4) To facilitate the resolution of disputes among American Indian tribes, lineal descendants of American Indians, and museums relating to the return of American Indian remains and burial objects pursuant to Code Section 44-12-262, including convening the parties to the dispute;

(5) To advise the Department of Natural Resources, the General Assembly, the Human Relations Commission, the Secretary of State, local political subdivisions, state and local law enforcement agencies, and other appropriate agencies and individuals regarding policy matters relating to issues affecting American Indians;

(6) To apply for and receive grants, gifts, and direct appropriations from the federal government; the state government; any county, municipal, or local government; any board, bureau, commission, agency, or establishment of any such government; any other organization, public or private; and any individual or groups of individuals; and

(7) To preserve and foster the culture and heritage of Indians and Indian descendants in this state and to be the agency to deal with specific federal programs which are required to be dealt with only by an Indian agency or organization.

§ 44-12-283.1 - Additional powers of council

O.C.G.A. 44-12-283.1 (2010)
44-12-283.1. Additional powers of council


In addition to any other powers granted by law, the council may, in its discretion, study, consider, accumulate, compile, assemble, and disseminate information on any aspect of Indian affairs; investigate relief needs of Indians in Georgia and provide technical assistance in the preparation of plans for the alleviation of such needs; confer with appropriate officials of local, state, and federal governments, and agencies of these governments, and with such congressional committees that may be concerned with Indian affairs, in order to encourage and implement coordination of applicable resources to meet the needs of Indians in Georgia; cooperate with and secure the assistance of the local, state, and federal governments, or any agencies thereof, in formulating any such programs and coordinate such programs with any programs regarding Indian affairs adopted or planned by the federal government, to the end that the department secures the full benefit of such programs; review all proposed or pending state legislation and amendments to existing state legislation affecting Indians in Georgia; conduct public hearings on matters relating to Indian affairs; study the existing status of recognition of all Indian groups, tribes, and communities presently existing in the state; expend funds in compliance with state regulations; and make legislative recommendations.

§ 44-12-283.2 - Council authorized to promulgate rules and regulations; notification requirement

O.C.G.A. 44-12-283.2 (2010)
44-12-283.2. Council authorized to promulgate rules and regulations; notification requirement


The council is authorized to promulgate rules and regulations to accomplish the provisions of this article in accordance with Chapter 13 of Title 50, the "Georgia Administrative Procedure Act." The council is expressly prohibited from engaging in any activity which would tend to assist the implementation of Indian gaming in this state, and the council shall immediately notify in writing the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives of any communication it may receive from any source relating to such subject.

§ 44-12-284 - Delegation of duties; professional, technical, and clerical personnel

O.C.G.A. 44-12-284 (2010)
44-12-284. Delegation of duties; professional, technical, and clerical personnel


The council may delegate duties to one or more councilmembers or agents. The council is authorized to obtain the services of such professional, technical, and clerical personnel as may be necessary to enable it to carry out its functions under this part and to contract for such services as may be necessary to enable the council to carry out its responsibilities.

§ 44-12-285 - Annual report

O.C.G.A. 44-12-285 (2010)
44-12-285. Annual report


The council shall make an annual report of its activities to the Governor.

PART 3 - LEGITIMATE AMERICAN INDIAN TRIBES

§ 44-12-300 - Tribes, bands, groups, or communities recognized by state as legitimate American Indian Tribes

O.C.G.A. 44-12-300 (2010)
44-12-300. Tribes, bands, groups, or communities recognized by state as legitimate American Indian Tribes


(a) The State of Georgia officially recognizes as legitimate American Indian tribes of Georgia the following tribes, bands, groups, or communities:

(1) The Georgia Tribe of Eastern Cherokee

P.O. Box 1993

Dahlonega, Georgia 30533;

(2) The Lower Muscogee Creek Tribe

Route 2, Box 370

Whigham, Georgia 31797; and

(3) The Cherokee of Georgia Tribal Council

Saint George, Georgia 31646.

(b) The General Assembly may recognize tribes, bands, groups, or communities other than those stated in subsection (a) of this Code section as the General Assembly deems appropriate.

ARTICLE 8 - DIE, MOLDS, FORMS, AND PATTERNS

PART 1 - IN GENERAL

§ 44-12-310 - Definitions

O.C.G.A. 44-12-310 (2010)
44-12-310. Definitions


As used in this article, the term:

(1) "Customer" means any individual or entity who causes or caused a molder to fabricate, cast, or otherwise make a die, mold, form, or pattern or who provides a molder with a die, mold, form, or pattern to manufacture, assemble, cast, fabricate, or otherwise make a product or products for a customer.

(2) "Molder" means any individual or entity who fabricates, casts, or otherwise makes or uses a die, mold, form, or pattern for the purpose of manufacturing, assembling, casting, fabricating, or otherwise making a product or products for a customer. "Molder" includes, but is not limited to, a tool or die maker.

(3) "Within three years following the last prior use" shall include any three-year period following the last prior use of a die, mold, form, or pattern regardless of whether or not any portion of such period precedes July 1, 1999.

§ 44-12-311 - Rights and title; transfer to molder

O.C.G.A. 44-12-311 (2010)
44-12-311. Rights and title; transfer to molder


(a) In the absence of any agreement to the contrary, the customer shall have all rights and title to any die, mold, form, or pattern in the possession of the molder.

(b) If a customer does not claim possession from a molder of a die, mold, form, or pattern within three years following the last prior use, all rights and title to any die, mold, form, or pattern shall be transferred by operation of law to the molder for the purpose of destroying or otherwise disposing of such die, mold, form, or pattern, consistent with this Code section.

(c) If a molder chooses to have all rights and title to any die, mold, form, or pattern transferred to the molder by operation of law, the molder shall send written notice by registered mail or statutory overnight delivery to the chief executive officer of the customer or, if the customer is not a business entity, to the customer at the customer's last known address, indicating that the molder intends to terminate the customer's rights and title by having all such rights and title transferred to the molder by operation of law pursuant to this Code section. Such notice shall include a statement of the customer's rights as set forth in subsection (d) of this Code section.
(d)(1) If a customer does not respond in person or by mail to claim possession of the particular die, mold, form, or pattern within 120 days following the date the notice was sent, or does not make other contractual arrangements with the molder for storage of the die, mold, form, or pattern, all rights and title of the customer, except patents and copyrights, shall transfer by operation of law to the molder. Thereafter, the molder may destroy or otherwise dispose of the particular die, mold, form, or pattern as the molder's own property without any risk of liability to the customer.

(2) This Code section shall not in any manner affect any right of the customer under federal patent or copyright law or federal law pertaining to unfair competition.

PART 2 - MOLDERS' LIENS

§ 44-12-320 - Lien created; notice; enforcement; public auction authorized

O.C.G.A. 44-12-320 (2010)
44-12-320. Lien created; notice; enforcement; public auction authorized


(a) Molders shall have a lien, dependent on possession, on all dies, molds, forms, or patterns in their hands belonging to a customer, for the balance due them from such customer for any manufacturing or fabrication work related to the property on which the molder claims the lien. Such liens shall attach upon the commencement of work by the molder and shall be subject to any prior perfected security interest in such property as of the commencement date. The molder may retain possession of the die, mold, form, or pattern until the charges are paid or until repossessed by a creditor with a prior perfected security interest.

(b) Before enforcing such lien, notice in writing shall be given to the customer, whether delivered personally or sent by registered mail or statutory overnight delivery to the last known address of the customer. Such notice shall state that a lien is claimed for the damages set forth in or attached to such writing for manufacturing or fabrication work contracted or performed for the customer. Such notice shall also include a demand for payment.

(c) A lien may not be enforced under this part if the customer, within the time period provided in subsection (d) of this Code section, notifies the molder that the products fail to meet an approved quality control plan, the products deviated from approved samples, or the products deviated from previously accepted parts and the customer returns the products within 60 days after the date on which the products are delivered to the customer.

(d) If the molder has not been paid the amount due within 60 days after the notice has been received by the customer as provided in subsection (b) of this Code section and the products have not been returned to the molder within 60 days after the date on which the products are delivered to the customer because of a defective condition as provided in subsection (c) of this Code section, the molder may sell the die, mold, form, or pattern at a public auction.

(e) In no event shall the amount of the lien established by this Code section exceed the contract price of services performed by the molder.

§ 44-12-321 - Notice before sale of property; violation of certain rights prohibited

O.C.G.A. 44-12-321 (2010)
44-12-321. Notice before sale of property; violation of certain rights prohibited


(a) Before a molder may sell a die, mold, form, or pattern, pursuant to subsection (c) of Code Section 44-12-320, the molder shall notify the customer by registered mail or statutory overnight delivery, return receipt requested. The notice shall include the following information:

(1) The molder's intention to sell the die, mold, form, or pattern 30 days after the customer's receipt of the notice;

(2) A description of the die, mold, form, or pattern to be sold;

(3) The time and place of the sale; and

(4) An itemized statement for the amount due.

(b) If there is no return of the receipt of the mailing or if the postal service returns the notice as being nondeliverable, the molder shall publish notice of the molder's intention to sell the die, mold, form, or pattern in a newspaper of general circulation in the county of the customer's last known place of business. The notice shall include a description of the die, mold, form, or pattern.

(c) A sale shall not be made under this Code section if such sale would violate any right of a customer under federal patent or copyright law.

§ 44-12-322 - Effect of part on other laws of this state

O.C.G.A. 44-12-322 (2010)
44-12-322. Effect of part on other laws of this state


In the event of any conflict between the provisions of this part and the provisions of Articles 7 and 8 of Chapter 14 of this title, the provisions of this part shall control.
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