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Back to Scrap Laws Oregon Metal Scrap Statute
Current as of September 14, 2015

The State Metals Theft Laws summaries are not intended to provide or be relied as a legal advice. This material is provided to serve as a reasonable compilation of the most current state scrap laws and is intended to be a resource or supplement to, and provide ideas for, compliance with all applicable laws. The ISRI State Scrap Laws are subject to change and readers should visit http://www.isri.org/metalstheftdb to make certain they are reading the most recent version of ISRI's summaries of the State Metals Theft Laws

Please Note: Amendments by 2015 Oregon SB 693, effective January 1, 2016, are included and noted in this summary.

Materials Covered and Other Definitions

"Metal Property" means Commercial, Nonferrous, or Private Metal Property.

"Nonferrous Metal Property" means an item fabricated or containing parts made of or in an alloy with copper, brass, aluminum, bronze, lead, zinc or nickel; but does not include gold, silver or platinum that is used in the manufacture, repair, sale or resale of jewelry.

"Private Metal Property" means a catalytic converter removed from a vehicle and offered for sale as an independent item, whether individually or in bulk form.

"Commercial Metal Property" means an item fabricated or containing parts made of metal or metal alloys that:

  • Bears the name of, or a serial or model number, logo or other device used by a Commercial Seller to identify the Commercial Seller’s property;
  • Constitutes wire of a gauge typically used by utilities to provide electrical or telecommunications service.

Is used as, used in or used as part of

  • A utility access cover or a cover for a utility meter;
  • A pole, fixture or component of a street light or traffic light;
  • A sign or marker located, with the permission of a governmental entity, alongside a street, road or bridge for the purpose of directing or controlling traffic or providing information to motorists;
  • A traffic safety device, including a guardrail for a highway, road or bridge;
  • A vase, plaque, marker, tablet, plate or other sign or ornament affixed to or in proximity to a historic site, grave, statue, monument or similar property accessible to members of the public;
  • An agricultural implement;
  • A forestry implement or structure; or
  • A logging operation implement;

Consists of material used in building or other commercial construction, including:

  • Copper or aluminum pipe, tubing or wiring;
  • Aluminum gutters, downspouts, siding, decking, bleachers or risers; or
  • Aluminum or stainless steel fence panels made of one-inch tubing 42 inches long, with four-inch gaps;

Metallic wire which has had insulation removed is subject to additional recordkeeping or reporting requirements.

Beer kegs are subject to additional purchase restrictions.

"Commercial Seller" means a business entity, as defined in Section 60.470, nonprofit corporation or governmental entity that regularly or periodically sells or delivers metal property to a Scrap Metal Business as part of the entity’s business functions.

"Scrap Metal Business" means a person that:

  • Engages in the business of purchasing or receiving Nonferrous or Private Metal Property for aggregation and sale to another Scrap Metal Business

Maintains a permanent or fixed place of business at which the person engages in the business of purchasing or receiving Metal Property for:

  • the purpose of altering or preparing the property for use in manufacturing other products, and uses a device used in metal recycling; or
  • the purpose of aggregation and sale to another scrap metal business; or

"Scrap Metal Business" does not include a governmental entity that accepts Metal Property for recycling.

(Added by SB 693) "Electronic Funds Transfer", as defined in Section 293.525, means the movement of funds by nonpaper means, usually through a payment system including, but not limited to, an automated clearinghouse or the Federal Reserve’s Fedwire system.

(Added by SB 693) "Stored Value Device" means a debit card or other device that draws funds from an account owned or operated by the user and that allows the user to obtain something of value from a merchant.

"Transaction" means a sale, purchase, receipt or trade of, or a contract, agreement or pledge to sell, purchase, receive or trade, Private Metal Property or Nonferrous Metal Property that occurs or forms between an individual and a Scrap Metal Business.

Exemptions

The law exempts the following persons:

  • A person engaged in recycling beverage containers as defined in Section 459A.700.
  • A person engaged in buying or selling used or empty food containers made of metal.
  • A person who has been issued a Vehicle Dealer Certificate (Section 822.020), Dismantler Certificate (Section 822.110), or Towing Business Certificate (822.205), but only if the person is purchasing, transporting, or receiving an item of Commercial or Nonferrous Metal Property that is a motor vehicle or a motor vehicle part.

The Recordkeeping - Individual Seller provision exempts:

  • Transfers of Metal Property made without consideration; and
  • A sale, purchase, receipt, trade, contract, agreement, or pledge with a Commercial Seller.

The Recordkeeping - Individual Seller and Recordkeeping - Commercial Account provisions exempt a sale, purchase, receipt, or trade, contract, agreement, or pledge between Scrap Metal Businesses.

Recordkeeping - Individual Seller

A Scrap Metal Business must create a written or electronic record of purchases, receipts, or trades of Private Metal Property or Nonferrous Metal Property with an individual Seller. The transaction record must be made on a standardized form in English at the time and in the location where the transaction occurs, with the following information:

  • The Seller's signature;
  • The time, date, and location;
  • The monetary amount or other value of the transaction;
  • The name of the Scrap Metal Business employee conducting the transaction;
  • The Seller's name, telephone number, and a street address (or post office box if such is listed on the Seller's photo ID) to which payment will be mailed;
  • The description, license plate number, and issuing state of the motor vehicle used to transport the Seller or Metal Property, if such was used.
  • A copy of the Seller's current government-issued photo ID;
  • A photo or video depicting the Seller's face;
  • A general description of the Metal Property that constitutes the predominant part of the transaction, including the weight, quantity or volume, and any readily discernible identifiable marks;
  • A declaration on the record or on a receipt issued to the Seller stating the following, signed and dated by the Seller and the Scrap Metal Business employee: I, _______________, AFFIRM UNDER PENALTY OF LAW THAT THE PROPERTY I AM SELLING IN THIS TRANSACTION IS NOT, TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE, STOLEN PROPERTY.
  • If the Scrap Metal Business requires it, the Seller's thumbprint.

 

Commercial Property

A Scrap Metal Business only purchase or receive Commercial Metal Property from a Commercial Seller with a Commercial Account or their authorized employee or agent.

Recordkeeping - Commercial Account

A Scrap Metal Business must create and maintain a Commercial Account before purchasing or receiving Metal Property from a Commercial Seller, with the following information entered clearly and legibly in English onto a standardized printed or electronic form:

  • The Commercial Seller's full name;
  • The Commercial Seller's business address and telephone number;
  • The full name of each individual authorized to receive payment for Metal Property;

For each purchase or receipt of Metal Property from a Commercial Seller, the following:

  • The time, date, and location at which the Metal Property was delivered;
  • The monetary amount or other value of the Metal Property;
  • A description of the predominant type of Metal Property;
  • The signature of the Deliverer;
  • If the Scrap Metal Business requires it, the Deliverer's thumbprint.
Metallic Wire - Additional Recordkeeping

For purchases or receipts of metallic wire which has had insulation removed, a Scrap Metal Business must either:

  • Retain a copy of the Seller's appropriate documentation proving the Seller owns or is entitled to offer the wire for purchase or receipt and that the insulation was removed by accident or was done by legitimate means for a legitimate purpose; or
  • Report the purchase or receipt to a law enforcement agency within 24 hours.
Retention

Records must be kept at all times at the current place of business for 1 year following the transaction date, except that video recordings need only be retained for at least 30 days.

Inspection

The required records and accounts must be made available to any peace officer on demand.

Reporting/Do Not Purchase From List

A Scrap Metal Business must report the purchase or receipt of any of the following to a law enforcement agency within 24 hours:

  • Metal Property the person knows or has good reason to know is stolen or was unlawfully altered;
  • Metallic wire which has had insulation removed if the Seller did not provide the documentation required in the Metallic Wire - Recordkeeping/Reporting provision;
  • Commercial Metal Property the person knows or has good reason to know was not acquired from a Commercial Seller with a commercial account or an individual who can produce written authorization to deliver Metal Property for such; or

Metal Property from an individual the person knows or has good reason to know:

  • Is under 16 years old; or
  • Has, according to written or electronically transmitted information provided by a peace officer or law enforcement agency, been convicted within the last five years as a principal, agent, or accessory of a crime involving drugs; burglary, robbery, or theft; or possession or receipt of stolen property.

For Metal Property the Scrap Metal Business possesses and knows or has good reason to know was lost by or stolen from the lawful possessor, the Scrap Metal Business must promptly report the name of the lawful possessor, if known; the name of the person that delivered the Metal Property; and the date the property was received.

Within 2 business days after receiving a subpoena from a peace officer or law enforcement agency for information related to a specified individual, vehicle, or Metal Property, a Scrap Metal Business must provide a copy of the relevant record or relevant part of a Commercial Account record with the related information, by any form or method reasonably required.

Beer Kegs

A Scrap Metal Business may not purchase or receive kegs or similar metallic containers used to store or dispense alcoholic beverages except from a person that manufacturers such or from a person licensed by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission under Section 471.155.

Payment Restrictions

(SB 693 adds options of electronic funds transfer or stored value card; new text is italicized) No cash payments to a Seller that is an individual or a Commercial Seller that is a nonprofit corporation. Payment must be made by electronic funds transfer, stored value card or stored value device, or by mailing a nontransferable check for the purchase price. Payment must be made not earlier than 3 business days after the transaction date. The check, electronic funds transfer or stored value device must draw on or from an account the Scrap Metal Business maintains with a financial institution. A stored value card may be issued by a money transmission business licensed under Section  717.200 to Section  717.320 or exempt under Section  717.210.

  • For an individual paid by check, the check must be payable to the Seller and mailed to the address given in the Recordkeeping provision.
  • For a nonprofit paid by check, the check must be payable to the nonprofit and mailed to the address provided in the nonprofit's Commercial Account.

A Scrap Metal Business may not cash a payment check. A Business may only release a check directly to the Seller if the Business has the written approval of a law enforcement agency with jurisdiction over the business and the check was either not delivered in 10 days or was returned as undelivered or undeliverable; such approval must be retained for 1 year. Alternately, the Business may retain a check returned as undelivered or undeliverable until the Seller provides a valid address; if the Seller has not done so within 30 days of the transaction, the Business may cancel the check and the Seller shall forfeit the payment.

Tag and Hold

A peace officer or law enforcement agency that reasonably suspects Metal Property was lost or stolen may notify a Scrap Metal Business to segregate, protect, and tag and hold the property for up to 10 days. Within 10 days the officer or agency must either determine the property was lost or stolen and lawfully impound or recover the property and return it to the owner, or notify the Business that the hold is no longer necessary.

County Theft Alert Plans

The District Attorney of each county with a Scrap Metal Business location shall create a written plan of action for effective communication between law enforcement and the business community after consulting with the affected law enforcement agencies and the business community. The plan must include a procedure for agencies to notify Scrap Metal Businesses of a Theft of Metal Property within 24 hours of the theft being reported. The local public safety coordinating council shall receive a copy of the plan from the DA.

Transportation Certificate (summarized from Section 164.857)

A Seller or transferor of Metal Property that believes the buyer or transferee intends to deliver the property to a Scrap Metal Business shall provide the buyer or transferee with a metal transportation certificate. The State Police shall create a certificate form and make it available on their website. The Metal Transportation certificate must include the following:

  • The date the Metal Property was acquired;
  • The amount and type of Metal Property being transported;
  • The location where the Metal Property was loaded and its destination;
  • The name, address, and telephone number of the Seller or transferor;
  • The name, address, and telephone number of the transporter.
Penalties

A person commits the offense of Unlawfully Transporting Metal Property (Section 164.857) if they transport metal property on a public highway or on premises open to the public with the intent to deliver the metal property to a Scrap Metal Business and the person does not have a metal transportation certificate in their possession

Violation of the law is a specific fine violation with a presumptive fine of $1,000; or for a Scrap Metal Business with a 4th or subsequent offense, a presumptive fine of $5,000.

The following are crimes punishable as a class A misdemeanor:

  • Unlawfully Altering Metal Property: if a person, with intent to deceive a Scrap Metal Business as to the ownership or origin of Metal Property, knowingly removes, alters, renders unreadable or invisible or obliterates any mark or method a manufacturer uses to identify Metal Property;
  • Making a False Statement on a Metal Property Record: if a person knowingly makes, causes, or allows a false entry or misstatement of material fact in a record; or signs the declaration that the property is not stolen while knowing it is;
  • Unlawfully Purchasing or Receiving Metal Property: if a Scrap Metal Business or their employee or agent fails to report the purchase or receipt of items specified in the Reporting provision to a law enforcement agency within 24 hours.

It is a defense to a charge of Theft by Receiving (Section 164.095) if a Scrap Metal Business makes the report required for property the person knows or has good reason to know is stolen.

©2016. The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. All rights reserved.

This summary of State Metals Theft Laws is being viewed on this website under license and is owned and copyrighted by Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. ("ISRI"),1615 L Street, N.W., Suite 600, Washington, DC 20036.