Loading price data
Scrap Monster
Access the
ScrapMonster has become North America's largest scrap trading platform with 100,097 members and the trusted source for scrap prices, news, and information. Join Today!

Back to Scrap Laws Nevada Metal Scrap Statute
Current as of May 20, 2014

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
Overview of Provisions (use the section titles to travel directly to that section)

Please Note: Amendments by 2013 Nevada SB 235, effective October 1, 2013, and Nevada SB 37, effective May 23, 2013, are included and noted in this summary.

Nevada has three categories of purchasers regulated in its law: Junk Dealers, Scrap Metal Processors, and Secondhand Dealers. Provisions covering Junk Dealers and Scrap Metal Processors are included in the summary, but are re-ordered from their appearance in the law

Materials Covered and Other Definitions

"Junk" includes old iron, copper, brass, lead, zinc, tin, steel and other metals, metallic cables, wires, ropes, cordage, bottles, bagging, rags, rubber, paper, and all other secondhand, used or castoff articles or material of any kind, but does not include Scrap Metal.

"Scrap Metal" means:

  • Nonferrous metals, scrap iron, stainless steel or other material or equipment which consists in whole or in part of metal and which is used in construction, agricultural operations, electrical power generation, transmission or distribution, cable, broadband or telecommunications transmission, railroad equipment, oil well rigs or any lights maintained by the State or a local government, including, without limitation, street lights, traffic-control devices, park lights or ballpark lights; and
  • Catalytic converters.

"Scrap Metal" does not include waste generated by a household, aluminum beverage containers, used construction scrap iron or a metal product in its original manufactured form which contains not more than 20% by weight nonferrous metal.

"Junk Dealer" means every person, firm or corporation engaged in the business of purchasing or selling hides or junk, other than used books.

"Scrap Metal Processor" means any person who either:

  • Engages in the business of purchasing, trading, bartering, or otherwise receiving Scrap Metal; or
  • Uses machinery and equipment for processing and manufacturing iron, steel or nonferrous scrap into prepared grades, and whose principal product is scrap iron, scrap steel or nonferrous metallic scrap, not including precious metals, for sale for remelting purposes.

"Secondhand dealer" means any person engaged in whole or in part in the business of buying and selling metal junk, melted metals or secondhand personal property, other than antiques, used books, coins and collectibles, but does not include buying or selling certain secondhand firearms or antique parts, accessories, or other equipment relating to such.

(added by SB 235) "Designated Third Party" means any person with whom a local law enforcement agency has entered into a contract for the purpose of receiving and storing any information required by the Reporting - Scrap Metal Processor provision.


Exempts all charitable organizations recognized as such by the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.

Purchases of Scrap Metal from a business entity are exempt from the Reporting - Scrap Metal Processors provision.

Licensing - Scrap Metal Processors

A person shall not purchase Scrap Metal unless they possess both a valid business license issued by the State pursuant to NRS Chapter 76 and a valid business from the city or county, as applicable, where the person purchases Scrap Metal, and must obtain all required authorizations to operate from or be registered with the solid waste management authority for the area in which they purchase metal.

Recordkeeping - Scrap Metal Processors

Processors must maintain a book or other permanent record of each purchase of Scrap Metal with the following, legibly written in English if applicable:

  • The Date of purchase;
  • The name of the person who conducted the transaction on behalf of the Processor;
  • The name, street, house number, and date of birth listed on the ID provided;
  • The Seller's physical description, including gender, height, and eye and hair color;
  • A photo, video record or digital record of the Seller;
  • Fingerprint of the Seller's right index finger (or, if not available, a remaining finger or thumb);
  • The license number and general description of the delivery vehicle;
  • A description of the Scrap Metal consistent with the standards published and commonly applied in the Scrap Metal industry;
  • The amount, in weight, of Scrap Metal purchased (required for Reporting provision)
  • The price paid by the Processor;
  • A photograph or video recording of the purchase.

A copy of one of the following valid identifications from the Seller: (bold text added by SB 235)

  • Personal identification card issued by any state or territory of the U.S.;
  • Driver's license issued by any state or territory of the U.S.;
  • United States military identification card; or
  • An identification valid under Section 237.200 (consular identification cards)
Seller's Receipt - Scrap Metal Processors

A Processor shall provide the Seller a receipt containing the following:

  • The Date, Time, and Place of the purchase;
  • An identifying description and weight of the Scrap Metal purchased;
  • The price paid by the Processor;
  • A copy of the personal identification provided; and
  • The license number of the delivery vehicle.
Retention - Scrap Metal Processors

The photograph or video recording of the purchase must be retained on-site for at least 60 days after the date of the purchase.

Inspection - Scrap Metal Processors

All Scrap Metal purchased and the records required must at all times during normal business hours be open to inspection by a prosecuting attorney or any peace officer.

Reporting - Scrap Metal Processors (added by SB 235)

A local law enforcement agency may establish an electronic reporting system or utilize an existing electronic reporting system to receive information related to purchases of Scrap Metal by Processors in its jurisdiction. The system must provide for electronic submission by Processors, and be electronically secure and accessible only to:

  • A Processor for the purpose of submitting information;
  • An officer of the local law enforcement agency; and
  • If applicable, an authorized employee of any designated 3rd party.

If such a system is established, a Processor transacting business in that jurisdiction must submit electronic reports to the agency or designated 3rd party by 12 PM of the next business day with the following information from the transaction record, except that purchases of scrap metal from a business entity are exempt from reporting:

  • The Seller's name;
  • The date of purchase;
  • The name of the person who conducted the transaction on behalf of the Processor;
  • The name, street, house number, and date of birth listed on the Seller's ID;
  • The Seller's physical description, including gender, height, and eye and hair color;
  • The license number and general description of the delivery vehicle;
  • The description of the Scrap Metal as recorded;
  • The amount, in weight, of Scrap Metal purchased.

An agency with an established reporting system shall submit a report on January 15 of each odd-numbered year to the Director of the Legislative Council for transmittal to the Nevada Legislature. The agency's report shall address the effect of the reporting system on the incidence of crime related to the sale or purchase of scrap metal within its jurisdiction.

The Division of Industrial Relations of the Dept. of Business and Industry shall, in consultation with representatives of local law enforcement agencies and the scrap metal industry, adopt regulations to ensure the confidentiality of reported information, including:

  • The confidentiality of consumer information;
  • The confidentiality of proprietary information;
  • Equity of input into contractual terms;
  • Contractual terms related to disclaimers, indemnification, and the ownership of data by a designated 3rd party;
  • Oversight of a designated 3rd party that handles, maintains, or has access to such information, including without limitation the qualifications, equipment, procedures, and background checks required of the 3rd party;
  • The manner in which reported information may be used, shared or disseminated; and
  • The maintenance of reported information in relationship to other data maintained by a law enforcement agency.
Information Confidentiality - Scrap Metal Processors (added by SB 235)

Except as provided in the Reporting - Scrap Metal Processors provision, any information concerning the purchase of Scrap Metal must be kept confidential by the person possessing the information.

Notice to Sellers - Scrap Metal Processors (added by SB 235)

If required to report electronically to local law enforcement, a Processor must display prominently at the point of purchase a public notice, in a form approved by the local law enforcement agency, describing the information that the Processor must report.

Hold - Scrap Metal Processors

A peace officer or investigator involved in the investigation or prosecution of criminal activity may place a 7 business day written hold on any property related to the criminal activity in the possession of a Processor. A hold may be extended for up to an additional 7 day period by providing written notice. The peace officer or investigator who placed the hold shall notify the Processor in writing when the investigation or prosecution has concluded or when the hold is no longer necessary, whichever occurs sooner.

A peace officer or investigator who placed a hold on property may obtain custody of it if they obtain and provide the Processor with a copy of written authorization from the prosecuting attorney which includes a description of the property and acknowledgement of the Processor's interest in the property. Property thus received may only be disposed of in the manners set forth in NRS 52.385 or 179.125 to 179.165, inclusive.


Payment Restrictions - Scrap Metal Processors

$150 cash threshold for purchases of Scrap Metal; a Processor may only make one cash transaction of less than $150 with the same Seller on the same day. Payments of $150 or more must be by check or electronic transfer. For payments made by check to a business, the check must be made payable to the business using the name of the business.


Licensing - Junk Dealers

A Junk Dealer or Secondhand Dealer that enters into an agreement to allow a customer to buy back property after purchasing it from them must be licensed as a pawnbroker with the local government where the transaction occurred if a license is required and abide by the state pawnbroker statutes, NRS Chapter 646.

Local governments may, by ordinance, prohibit any person from advertising within its respective jurisdiction as a Junk or Secondhand Dealer unless the person holds a valid license to engage in such within the jurisdiction, and may require that the number of the person’s business license be included in such advertising.


Recordkeeping - Junk Dealers

Every Dealer shall at all times keep conspicuously posted in their office or place of business a description of and the amount of hides and junk purchased by the Dealer each day, together with the names and addresses of the Sellers.

A Dealer must obtain a statement from a Seller with the following information:

  • When, where, and from whom the Seller obtained the property;
  • The Seller's age and residence, including information necessary to locate it;
  • The name of the Seller's employer and the place of business or employment.
  • If the Seller is a minor, the written consent of their parent or guardian.

Dealers must also keep a book written in ink at the time of purchase with the following:

  • A full and accurate description of each article purchased;
  • The Seller's full name, residence, and driver's license number;
  • A general description of the Seller;
  • The Seller's vehicle license number;

For purchases of metallic wire burned in whole or part to remove insulation:

  • The name of the person who delivered the metallic wire;
  • A description of the written evidence obtained identifying the person who delivered the metallic wire.

For purchases of metallic wire burned in whole or part to remove insulation, a Dealer must keep the following in addition to the book:

  • Written evidence identifying the person who delivered the metallic wire; and
  • A statement signed by the person who delivered the metallic wire in which the person attests that the metallic wire was lawfully acquired and burned.
Retention - Junk Dealers

No entry in a Dealer's book may be erased, mutilated, or changed. Materials obtained for burned metallic wire shall be retained for not less than 3 years.

Inspection - Junk Dealers

A Dealer's book must be open at all times to inspection by the sheriff of the county or any of their deputies, any member of the police department in the city or town, and any constable or other county or municipal officer in the county in which the Dealer does business.

Any Dealer who has personal property that is alleged to have been lost or stolen in their possession shall exhibit the property on demand to any police officer or constable, or other municipal or county official of the city, town or county in which Dealer does business, or to any person duly authorized in writing by any magistrate to inspect property in the possession of the Dealer, if the person exhibits his or her authorization to the Dealer.

Reporting - Junk Dealers

On the next business day following a purchase a Dealer must file the original statement from the Seller (as provided for in the Recordkeeping Provision) in the office of the sheriff of the county where the purchase was made (or, in a county whose population is less than 47,500, the office of the sheriff's deputy for transmission to the sheriff). If the purchase was made in a city or town, the Dealer shall file a copy with the chief of police.

If any property in their possession matches a description of property advertised as lost or stolen, a Dealer shall immediately notify the sheriff of the county or chief of police of the city or town where they do business of when and from whom the property was received.

Purchase Restrictions - Junk Dealers

No Dealer or any other entity shall purchase any junk from:

  • Any person appearing to be intoxicated;
  • Any person appearing to be in any abnormal mental condition;
  • Any minor, without the written consent of a parent or guardian.
Shipping Permit - Junk Dealers

Before shipping or transporting purchased articles, a Dealer shall apply to the sheriff, deputy, or any constable or chief of police in the county from which the shipment is to be made, for inspection of the articles to be shipped. The application must be signed and contain full information on the number, character, and description of the articles. The officer shall issue a permit for shipment of the articles described.


A Junk Dealer or Secondhand Dealer may not, as part of their business as a Dealer, buy a motor vehicle from a person and sell the motor vehicle to the same person.

Any Junk Dealer who violates any of the Junk Dealer provisions is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Unless a greater penalty is provided by a specific statute, a person who violates any of the Scrap Metal Processor provisions is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Any person, including but not limited to Dealers and Processors, or any agent, employee, or representative of such, who buys or receives any Junk or Scrap Metal which they know or should reasonably know is ordinarily used by and belongs to a cable, broadband, telecommunications, telephone, telegraph, gas, water, electric, or transportation company, or to a political subdivision engaged in furnishing utility service, and who fails to use ordinary care in determining whether the person selling or delivering the Junk or Scrap Metal has a legal right to do so, is guilty of criminally receiving such property, subject to a category D felony and punishable as provided in NRS 193.130.

(added by SB 235) A person who knowingly and willfully violates the Information Confidentiality - Scrap Metal Processors provision is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.

(amended by SB 37) Under NRS 202.582, A person who willfully and maliciously removes, damages, or destroys any utility property, agricultural property, property maintained by a state or local government, or a construction site or existing structure to obtain scrap metal shall be punished as follows:

  • If the removal, damage, or destruction caused an interruption in utility service, guilty of a category C felony punishable under NRS 193.130.

If the value of the property removed, damaged or destroyed, including the cost of repairing or replacing the property or structure, is:

  • Less than $500: guilty of a misdemeanor.
  • $500 or more: guilty of a category D felony punishable under NRS 193.130.

A person guilty of a violation under NRS 202.582 shall also pay restitution and:

  • 1st offense: 100 hours of community service;
  • 2nd offense: 200 hours of community service;
  • 3rd or subsequent: up to 300 hours of community service for up to 1 year.

(SB 37 changes property covered and adds payment of restitution and community service)


No Preemption

The provisions of this chapter do not impair the power of cities and counties in this State to license, tax and regulate any person, firm or corporation now engaged in or hereafter engaged in the buying and selling of Junk or Scrap Metal.

©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.