Please Note: Changes by 2013 Virginia HB 1481, effective July 1, 2013 are reflected and noted in the text, except general changes in reference from Scrap Metal Processors to Scrap Metal Purchasers are not noted.
"Scrap Metal" means any metal that is no longer used for its original purpose and that can be processed for reuse in mills, foundries, and other manufacturing facilities.
"Ferrous Scrap" means any Scrap Metal consisting primarily of iron, steel, or both, but excluding any Scrap Metal consisting primarily of stainless steel. Ferrous scrap includes large manufactured articles such as automobile bodies that may contain other substances to be removed and sorted during normal operations of Scrap Metal Processors.
"Nonferrous Scrap" means any Scrap Metal consisting primarily of stainless steel or of any metal other than iron or steel. Nonferrous Scrap does not include:
"Metal Article" means any manufactured item, consisting of metal, that is usable for its originally intended purpose without processing, repairs, or alteration and that is not otherwise excluded by the definitions in this section. Examples include, without limitation, railings, copper or aluminum wire, copper pipe and tubing, plumbing fixtures, copper and aluminum gutters, copper and aluminum downspouts, and cast-iron radiators. (HB 1481 removes manhole covers and bronze cemetery plaques, urns, and markers)
"Proprietary Article" means:
"Scrap Metal Purchaser" means any person or business, other than an Authorized Scrap Seller or a Broker buying or selling processed Scrap Metal, who purchases Scrap Metal either directly or through an authorized agent in excess of $20,000 during any 12-month period. (Added by HB 1481).
"Scrap Metal Processor" means a business entity in good standing authorized to conduct business in the Commonwealth that regularly utilizes machinery and equipment at one or more established locations in the normal course of business for processing and manufacturing Scrap Metal into prepared grades for sale as raw material to mills, foundries, and other manufacturing facilities.
"Authorized Scrap Seller" means licensed plumbers, electricians, HVAC contractors, building and construction contractors, demolition contractors, construction and demolition debris contractors, public utilities, transportation companies, industrial and manufacturing companies, marine, automobile, and aircraft salvage and wrecking companies, and government entities. (licensed peddlers and brokers removed by HB 1481)
"Broker" means any person or his authorized agent who negotiates, purchases, sells, or offers for sale any Scrap Metal either directly or through an authorized agent without obtaining title to or ownership of the Scrap Metal. (added by HB 1481)
Exempts purchases of Ferrous Scrap, unless covered by another material definition, from all provisions except the No Purchase from Minors provision.
Exempts purchases from an Authorized Scrap Seller or from their authorized agent and employee from all provisions except the No Purchase from Minors provision.
Purchases by Scrap Metal Purchasers are exempt from the requirements of Title 59.1, Ch. 9, Article 1. Building Fixtures (exempted by Section 59.1-123.2.) and Title 59.1, Ch. 9, Article 2. Equipment of Railroads and other Companies (exempted by Section 59.1-129.B.).
A Scrap Metal Purchaser must record the following for any purchase of Nonferrous Scrap, Metal Articles, and Proprietary Articles:
For Proprietary Articles, a Purchaser must additionally record:
One of the following:
Records must be retained for at least 5 years at a Purchaser's normal place of business or at another readily accessible and secure location, except photos or videos of Proprietary Articles need only be retained for 30 days.
Records must be available upon request to any law enforcement official, conservator of the peace, or special conservator of the peace appointed pursuant to Section 19.2-13, in the performance of their duties who presents credentials at the Purchaser's normal business location during regular business hours.
For Proprietary Articles purchased without documentation from the Seller establishing lawful possession, a Purchaser must submit a report to the local sheriff's department or chief of police by the close of the following business day with:
If requested by the chief law enforcement officer of a Purchaser's business locality, every Purchaser conducting business in the locality shall furnish to the chief a report of all purchases of Nonferrous Scrap, Metal Articles, and Proprietary Articles, excluding aluminum cans and interior household items. Reports must be submitted in a form prescribed by the Virginia State Police and electronically if requested (1 year period to implement electronic reporting removed by HB 1481), on the next business day following the purchase, containing the following information:
For Proprietary Articles purchased without documentation from the Seller establishing lawful possession, a Purchaser must hold the articles for at least 15 days.
A Purchaser shall not purchase any Scrap Metal from any person under 18 years old.
A Purchaser who negligently violates any provision may be assessed a civil penalty of up to $7,500 for each violation. Any attorney for the locality where a violation occurred may bring a civil action to recover such a civil penalty, payable to the local treasury.
A Purchaser who knowingly violates a provision is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.
©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.