State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Wyoming > Title31 > Chapter13

CHAPTER 13 - ABANDONED VEHICLES

 

31-13-101. Definitions.

 

 

(a) As used in this act:

 

(i) Repealed by Laws 1991, ch. 241, 4.

 

(ii) "Department" means the department oftransportation;

 

(iii) "Highway" means the entire width between theboundary lines of every way publicly maintained when any part thereof is opento the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel;

 

(iv) "Lienholder" means a person holding a validsecurity interest in a vehicle;

 

(v) "Local authorities" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xix);

 

(vi) "Owner" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xxvi);

 

(vii) "Police officer" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xxxiii);

 

(viii) "Registration" means the certificate of title orcertificates and registration card issued under the laws of this statepertaining to the registration of vehicles;

 

(ix) "Vehicle" means:

 

(A) As provided by W.S. 31-5-102(a)(lviii) excepting everyvehicle which is designed for agricultural purposes and exclusively used by theowner thereof in the conduct of his agricultural operations;

 

(B) A housetrailer as provided by W.S. 31-1-101(a)(xxiii)(A)which is not installed on a permanent foundation and which is not taxable asreal property; or

 

(C) A transportable home as provided by W.S.31-1-101(a)(xxiv)(C) which is not installed on a permanent foundation and whichis not taxable as real property.

 

(x) "This act" means W.S. 31-13-101 through31-13-116.

 

31-13-102. Powers and duties of department; responsibility of thecounty.

 

 

(a) The department shall administer the provisions of this act.

 

(b) The department may adopt rules and regulations as necessaryto carry out the provisions of this act.

 

(c) The removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale ofabandoned vehicles impounded by a police officer are the responsibility of thecounty in which the vehicle is impounded.

 

31-13-103. Uniformity of provisions.

 

Theprovisions of this act shall be applicable and uniform throughout this stateand in all political subdivisions therein but any city or town may enact orenforce any ordinance on a matter covered by this act which shall supersedethis act to the extent that any conflict exists.

 

31-13-104. Abandonment on highway or property; removal; presumption ofabandonment; title to vehicle; notice of intent to impound.

 

 

(a) No person shall abandon a vehicle upon any highway.

 

(b) No person shall abandon a vehicle upon any public orprivate property without the express consent of the owner or person in lawfulpossession or control of the property.

 

(c) Any police officer who has reasonable grounds to believethat a vehicle has been abandoned may remove the vehicle, or cause it to beremoved, at the expense of the owner to a place of impoundment designated bythe county commissioners of the county in which the vehicle is impounded.Removal of an abandoned vehicle from private property by a police officer shallbe upon the written request, upon a form prescribed by the department, of theowner or person in lawful possession or control of the property. The policedepartment having jurisdiction shall immediately send a written report of theremoval by a police officer to the sheriff of the county in which the vehicleis impounded, which report shall include a description of the vehicle, thedate, time and place of removal, the grounds for removal, and place ofimpoundment of the vehicle. The sheriff of the county in which the vehicle isimpounded shall submit the report provided by the police department to thedepartment with a determination of the retail value of the vehicle as requiredin this subsection. Upon receipt of a report as provided, the department shallprovide written notification to the vehicle owner of record and to lienholdersof record, stating the grounds for removal by a police officer and the name ofthe place of impoundment of the vehicle. Notice shall not be required if theretail value of an abandoned vehicle removed by a police officer is six hundreddollars ($600.00) or less as determined by the sheriff of the county in whichthe vehicle is impounded. As to vehicles not registered in this state, thedepartment shall make a reasonable effort to notify the owner or any lienholderof removal by a police officer and the place of impoundment of the vehicle. Thedepartment shall forward a copy of the notice to the owner or person in chargeof the place of impoundment of a vehicle removed by a police officer.

 

(d) For purposes of this section a vehicle is presumed to beabandoned if it is left unattended on a highway for more than twenty-four (24)hours after a notice of intent to impound has been placed on it pursuant tosubsection (f) of this section, or on any public or private property withoutexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful possession or control of theproperty for more than five (5) days after a notice of intent to impound hasbeen placed on it pursuant to subsection (f) of this section. Notwithstandingany other provisions of law to the contrary, any vehicle left unattended onprivate property for thirty (30) days after the expiration of the consent, oralor written, of the owner or the person in lawful possession or control of theproperty is presumed abandoned five (5) days after a notice of intent toimpound has been placed on it pursuant to subsection (f) of this section. Atransportable home impounded pursuant to this section shall be disposed of inaccordance with W.S. 31-13-109.

 

(e) Except as otherwise provided by law, title to any vehicleimpounded by a police officer not reclaimed by the registered owner or anylienholder within thirty (30) days of the notice provided by subsection (c) ofthis section shall vest with the county government where the vehicle isimpounded.

 

(f) A notice of intent to impound an abandoned vehicle by apolice officer shall be placed in a prominent position on a vehicle when apolice officer reasonably believes it is abandoned. The notice of intent shallremain on the vehicle at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to removal ifabandoned on a highway and five (5) days if abandoned on public or privateproperty and impounded by a police officer.

 

31-13-105. Limitations on possession; presumption of abandonment;exceptions; expense of removal.

 

(a) No person shall possess four (4) or more abandoned vehicleson his property or on property which is in his lawful possession or control, ifany four (4) or more of the vehicles are visible from a highway for more thanthirty (30) consecutive days.

 

(b) For purposes of this section a vehicle shall be presumed tobe abandoned if it is in an inoperable condition and is not currentlyregistered.

 

(c) This section shall not apply to:

 

(i) Antique or historic motor vehicles as defined by W.S.31-1-101(a)(xv)(A);

 

(ii) Vehicles kept in an enclosed garage or storage building;

 

(iii) Vehicles used for riprap on rivers, streams or reservoirs,or for erosion control;

 

(iv) Persons licensed in accordance with W.S. 31-13-114; or

 

(v) Vehicles used for educational or instructional purposes.

 

(d) A police officer may remove, or cause to be removed, anyvehicle which has been abandoned under this section, at the expense of theperson possessing the vehicle, to a place of impoundment designated by thecounty commissioners of the county in which the vehicle is impounded. Vehiclesimpounded under this section shall be disposed of in the manner provided bythis act.

 

(e) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(f) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(g) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(h) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

31-13-106. Mailing of notice of impoundment by a police officer; noticeby publication.

 

 

(a) The notice required by W.S. 31-13-104 shall be provided bythe department by personal delivery thereof to the person to be notified or bydeposit in the United States mail of the notice in an envelope with postageprepaid, addressed to the person at his address as shown by the records of thedepartment. Notice by mail is complete upon the expiration of four (4) daysfollowing deposit of the notice. Proof of the providing of notice shall be madeby the certificate of any officer or employee of the department or affidavit ofany person over eighteen (18) years of age, naming the person to whom noticewas provided and specifying the time, place and manner thereof.

 

(b) The notice required by W.S. 31-13-104, if the identity ofthe vehicle owner of record or lienholders of record, if any, cannot bedetermined or if the registration contains no address for the owner, shall beby one (1) publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the countywhere the vehicle was abandoned. Notice by publication may contain multiplelistings of abandoned vehicles. Any notice shall be in compliance with theprovisions of subsection (a) of this section.

 

31-13-107. Redemption.

 

Anyperson upon satisfactory proof of ownership or right to possession may redeeman impounded vehicle by paying the charges of towing, storage, notice, allother costs of impoundment, and any penalties imposed by the law of this state.

 

31-13-108. Disposition of abandoned vehicles impounded by a policeofficer; payment of expenses; extinguishment of liens.

 

 

(a) As to vehicles impounded by a police officer having aretail value of six hundred dollars ($600.00) or more after thirty (30) dayshave elapsed from the date notice was given as provided in W.S. 31-13-106, thesheriff shall sell the vehicle and its contents, if any, at public auction tothe highest bidder or cause an action to be filed pursuant to W.S.31-13-112(e). Notice of the sale shall be published once in a newspaper ofgeneral circulation in the county where the vehicle is impounded not less thanten (10) days preceding the date of the sale, giving a full description of thevehicle together with engine or serial numbers or marks, if any, and the amountof money claimed to be due thereon and the time and place of sale. All expensesincident to the removal, preservation, custody, sale and storage of the vehicleshall be paid and any proceeds shall be distributed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-111.After any vehicle has been sold under this section, the former owner, anylienholder or person entitled to possession of the vehicle has no furtherright, title, claim or interest in or to the vehicle or its contents, and allliens, encumbrances and security interests are extinguished.

 

(b) As to vehicles having a retail value of less than sixhundred dollars ($600.00) and impounded by a police officer, they shall bedisposed of by contract to persons licensed under this act or by auction.

 

(c) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(d) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(e) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(f) The sheriff may sell for any person an abandoned vehicle asdefined in this act and may charge a fee for the sale equal to ten dollars($10.00) plus the actual costs of publication and all other costs related tothe sale. Except as otherwise provided in W.S. 31-13-111(f), the proceeds ofthe sale conducted pursuant to this subsection less the expenses of the saleand the amount of any liens on the vehicle shall be given to the person onwhose property the vehicle was abandoned.

 

31-13-109. Disposition of vehicles left unattended on private propertyand sold by the property owner or through a court action.

 

 

(a) Any vehicle left unattended on private property without theexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful control of the property for atleast thirty (30) consecutive days may be sold by the owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property at public auction to the highest bidder or may be soldfollowing an action filed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-112(e). The thirty (30) dayperiod begins on the first day the owner or person in lawful control of theproperty has knowledge the vehicle is left unattended without consent. Forpurposes of a vehicle left unattended without express consent at anestablishment for the service, repair or maintenance of the vehicle, the thirty(30) day period begins on the day following the period when pursuant to anagreement the vehicle was to remain at the establishment.

 

(b) After the time period provided in subsection (a) of thissection has expired, the owner or person in lawful control of the propertyshall give a written report to the department on a form prescribed by thedepartment containing the following information:

 

(i) A description of the make, year, model, license platenumber and state indicator, and vehicle identification number of the vehicle;

 

(ii) The names and addresses of the vehicle owner or driver andany lienholders if known;

 

(iii) The name and address of the owner of the property where thevehicle was left unattended;

 

(iv) The date the vehicle was left unattended without theexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful control of the property;

 

(v) If the vehicle is removed, the date, time and location ofremoval and the name and address of the person who removed the vehicle; and

 

(vi) The address of the current location of the vehicle.

 

(c) Upon receipt of the report provided in subsection (b) ofthis section, the department shall make reasonable efforts to identify theowner and any lienholders of record. The department shall forward theinformation obtained to the owner or person in lawful control of the property.

 

(d) The owner or person in lawful control of the property shallgive a written notice of sale after the thirty (30) day time period provided insubsection (a) of this section expires but not less than ten (10) dayspreceding the date of sale to the sheriff of the county in which the vehicle issold and by certified mail to the owner and any lienholder of record, if theyare identified through reasonable efforts. The owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property shall publish notice of the sale once per week for two(2) consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county wherethe vehicle is abandoned. The notice shall contain the following:

 

(i) A complete description of the make, year, model, licenseplate number and state indicator, and vehicle identification number of thevehicle;

 

(ii) The amount of money claimed for expenses incident to theremoval, preservation, custody, storage and sale and if the vehicle is leftunattended at an establishment for service, repair or maintenance, the cost ofthe services; and

 

(iii) The time and place of the sale.

 

(e) All proceeds from the sale pursuant to this section may beretained by the person selling the vehicle. The owner or lienholder is entitledto recover from the person selling the vehicle any proceeds of the sale inexcess of the costs of the sale and monies owed for expenses related toremoval, preservation, custody, storage and sale and if left unattended at anestablishment for service, repair or maintenance, the cost of the servicesprovided an action is filed in the proper court for recovery within one hundredtwenty (120) days of the sale.

 

(f) Upon receipt of satisfactory evidence from the seller thathe has complied with this section and sold the vehicle, the sheriff shallexecute a certificate of sale in duplicate for a fee of seven dollars and fiftycents ($7.50) to be deposited in the county general fund. W.S. 31-13-110 and31-13-111(a) and (f) apply to any sale under this subsection. Satisfactoryevidence of compliance requires the following:

 

(i) A copy of the record required to be filed with thedepartment;

 

(ii) A copy of the information provided by the departmentpursuant to subsection (c) of this section; and

 

(iii) Copies of the notice of the sale and proof of mailing andpublication required by subsection (d) of this section.

 

(g) At any time prior to a sale under this section, the owneror lienholder of record may reclaim the vehicle upon payment of expensesincident to removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale, and if a vehiclewas left unattended at an establishment for service, repair or maintenance, thecost of the services. Storage expenses shall be computed at the rate of fivedollars ($5.00) per day.

 

(h) A sheriff who executes a certificate of sale under thissection is not liable to any person for damages resulting from the sale of avehicle under this section.

 

(j) No person shall sell a vehicle under this section if awritten court order prohibiting the sale is served on the proposed seller. Thecourt order shall be served on the person selling the vehicle prior to the saleand shall not be issued except for good cause.

 

(k) Upon the sale of a vehicle under this section, the formerowner, any lienholder or any person entitled to possession of the vehicle hasno further right, title, claim or interest in or to the vehicle or its contentsand all liens, encumbrances and security interests are extinguished.

 

31-13-110. Certificate of sale; certificate of title and registrationcard.

 

Whenany vehicle is sold, the sheriff, at the time of payment of the purchase price,shall execute a certificate of sale in duplicate. The original certificate ofsale shall be delivered to the purchaser and the copy shall be retained by thesheriff. The certificate of sale shall contain the name and address of thepurchaser, the date of sale, the consideration paid, a description of thevehicle and a stipulation that no warranty is made as to the condition or titleof the vehicle. The purchaser upon presentation of the certificate of sale tothe county clerk of any one (1) of the counties of Wyoming, and payment of thefees required by law shall be issued a certificate of title and a registrationcard for the vehicle.

 

31-13-111. Transmission of return of sale and sale proceeds to countytreasurer; payment of expenses and taxes; county abandoned vehicle account;duplicate receipts for proceeds; action for recovery of proceeds.

 

(a) When any vehicle is sold under this act the sheriff sellingthe vehicle shall transmit to the county treasurer of the county in which thevehicle was impounded, in duplicate, a return of sale setting forth adescription of the vehicle, the purchase price, the name and address of thepurchaser, the costs incurred in the sale, removal, preservation, custody andstorage of the vehicle.

 

(b) The sheriff shall transmit to the county treasurer of thecounty in which the vehicle was impounded by a police officer, with the returnof sale, the proceeds of the sale. Upon receipt of the return of sale andproceeds, the county treasurer shall deposit the proceeds in the general fundsin the county treasury to the credit of an account to be known as the countyabandoned vehicle account. The account is continuously appropriated only forthe purpose of this act. When the account totals an amount necessary to carryout the purposes of this act, as set by the board of county commissioners forthat county, but not to exceed one dollar ($1.00) for each resident in thecounty, according to the last federal census, all revenues thereafter receivedunder this subsection and W.S. 31-3-103(f), together with all interest earnedon the account, shall be transferred to the general funds of the countytreasurer. Upon receipt of the return of sale disclosing the costs incurredthe costs shall be paid from the county abandoned vehicle account to eachperson or transferred to each governmental entity incurring the expenses. Ifthe expenses exceed the sale proceeds, the allowable expenses prescribed inparagraph (g)(ii) of this section shall be paid.

 

(c) The county treasurer shall forward to the sheriff duplicatereceipts for proceeds received by the county treasurer under subsection (b) ofthis section. The sheriff shall file one (1) of each receipt with the countyclerk.

 

(d) Repealed by Laws 1993, ch. 27, 2.

 

(e) The owner or lienholder of a vehicle impounded by a policeofficer and sold pursuant to W.S. 31-13-108 is entitled to recover from thecounty any proceeds of the sale in excess of the costs of the sale, monies owedfor expenses related to removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale of thevehicle and taxes provided an action is filed in the proper court for recoverywithin one hundred twenty (120) days of the sale.

 

(f) Notwithstanding any other provision in this act, theproceeds of the sale of any housetrailer or transportable home as defined inW.S. 31-13-101(a)(ix)(B) and (C) which is abandoned and sold pursuant to thisact shall first satisfy the costs incurred in the sale, removal, preservation,custody and storage of the vehicle. Any balance then remaining shall be paidagainst any taxes due and owing. In the event the ad valorem levy has not beenset for the current year, the current year's tax shall be computed upon thelevy for the previous year. Any remaining taxes due and owing are cancelled.

 

(g) If the vehicle was abandoned on a highway or other publicproperty, the allowable expenses shall be paid from the county abandonedvehicle account provided for by W.S. 31-13-111(b) and administered as follows:

 

(i) The county shall make reasonable efforts to locate theowner of the abandoned vehicle if the owner is known to be a resident of thecounty in which the vehicle is abandoned and to collect the expenses from thelocal owner;

 

(ii) The allowable expenses are:

 

(A) Removal or towing costs of four dollars ($4.00) for everymile the vehicle is towed or sixty dollars ($60.00) whichever is greater;

 

(B) Storage charges with a maximum amount allowed of thirtydollars ($30.00);

 

(C) Sale and title costs not to exceed thirty dollars ($30.00);and

 

(D) A two hundred dollar ($200.00) limit for the total expensesassociated with each abandoned vehicle.

 

(iii) Payment of the expenses associated with vehicles abandonedon private property shall not be provided from the county abandoned vehicleaccount.

 

31-13-112. Release of liability for removal and storage of, and for lostor damaged items in, abandoned vehicles; disposition of personal propertywithin a vehicle; optional court action.

 

(a) A person who removes or stores a vehicle under this act orotherwise at the request of a police officer, shall not incur any civilliability for the removal or storage except for failure to exercise reasonablecare in the performance of the removal or storage.

 

(b) If any vehicle is removed from any highway, or public orprivate property as provided herein, the owner of the vehicle may not institutein any state court a suit in law or equity against any police officer or hisagents for the recovery of the value of any item in or on the vehicle that maybe lost, stolen or damaged resulting therefrom.

 

(c) A person who has custody of a vehicle removed or stored orotherwise at the request of a police officer shall release the personalproperty within the vehicle to the owner of the vehicle or a person acting asagent for the owner during regular office hours upon presentation of properidentification. No charge may be assessed against the owner or agent for theremoval or release of the personal property.

 

(d) If the owner of a vehicle or his agent removes the personalproperty from a vehicle which is stored at the request of a police officer, thevehicle shall be deemed abandoned unless within ten (10) days from the date ofremoval the owner or agent enters into a written agreement to pay the fullcharges for towing and storage. The owner or agent shall be informed inwriting of this provision by the person who has custody of the vehicle beforethe personal property is released. A vehicle deemed abandoned under thissection may be disposed of as are other abandoned vehicles.

 

(e) A property owner or person in lawful control of theproperty upon which a vehicle is abandoned or any sheriff who is authorized tosell an abandoned vehicle pursuant to this act may in lieu of selling thevehicle, file or cause to be filed by the county attorney if a sheriff, anaction in the county where the vehicle is impounded in the circuit court. Theaction shall be in rem and against the vehicle, vehicle owner, and all knownand unknown parties with an interest in the vehicle. The defendants in theaction shall be served as provided in the Wyoming Rules of Civil Procedure.Judgment in the civil action is limited to the value of the vehicle asdetermined by its sale price at the sale conducted by the sheriff afterjudgment is entered. All expenses incident to the removal, preservation,custody, sale and storage of the vehicle shall be paid. Except as otherwiseprovided in W.S. 31-13-111(f), any remaining proceeds:

 

(i) Shall be distributed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-111 if avehicle is impounded by a police officer pursuant to W.S. 31-13-104; or

 

(ii) May be retained by the property owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property upon which a vehicle is abandoned who files an actionpursuant to this subsection.

 

(f) After any vehicle has been sold under subsection (e) ofthis section, the former owner, any lienholder or person entitled to possessionof the vehicle has no further right, title, claim or interest in or to thevehicle or its contents, and all liens, encumbrances and security interests areextinguished.

 

(g) As used in this section:

 

(i) "Personal property" means all property within thevehicle which is not mounted, attached or affixed to the vehicle. The cargocarried on commercial vehicles is not considered personal property;

 

(ii) "Proper identification" means identification whichwould be sufficient to establish authorization to release the vehicle.

 

31-13-113. Repealed by Laws 1993, ch. 27, 2.

 

 

31-13-114. Licensing of storage and disposal facilities; records bylicensees.

 

 

(a) No person shall, unless licensed to do so by thedepartment:

 

(i) Sell as a business used parts of or used accessories forvehicles;

 

(ii) Wreck or dismantle vehicles as a business for resale of theparts thereof;

 

(iii) Rebuild wrecked or dismantled vehicles as a business; or

 

(iv) Engage as a business in the storage or disposal ofvehicles, the parts of which are suitable for reuse or recycling.

 

(b) Application for a license shall be made on a formprescribed by the department containing the name of the applicant, the addressor addresses where the business or activity is to be conducted, the nature ofthe business or activity, enumerated in subsection (a) of this section, theresidence address of the applicant if an individual, the names and residenceaddresses of the partners of the applicant if a partnership, the names andresidence of the principal officers of the applicant, and the state of itsincorporation if a corporation. The application shall be verified by the oathor affirmation of the applicant if a sole proprietorship, by a partner if apartnership, or by an officer if a corporation. The application shall beaccompanied by a fee of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) to be paid into thehighway fund.

 

(c) The department shall issue to an applicant a license tocarry on and conduct a business or activity as specified in the application fora period of one (1) year following the date on which the license is issued. Thedepartment shall reissue the license to the applicant when it is satisfied theapplicant has complied with this act and the laws of this state relating toregistration and certificates of titles of vehicles.

 

(d) The department shall suspend or revoke a license, uponfifteen (15) days prior written notice by certified mail and after giving thelicensee an opportunity for a hearing, if it finds:

 

(i) The license was fraudulently procured or erroneouslyissued; or

 

(ii) The applicant, or any partner or principal officer of theapplicant, if a partnership or a corporation, has failed to comply with thissection and the laws of the state relating to registration of and certificatesof title of vehicles.

 

(e) Every licensee shall maintain for three (3) years, in theform the department prescribes, a record of:

 

(i) Every vehicle or vehicle body, chassis or engine of or fora vehicle received or acquired by him, its description and identifying number,the date of its receipt or acquisition, and the name and address of the personfrom whom received or acquired;

 

(ii) Every vehicle or vehicle body, chassis or engine disposedof by him, its description and identifying number, the date of its disposition,and the name and address of the person to whom disposed; and

 

(iii) Every vehicle wrecked or dismantled by him and the date ofits wrecking or dismantling. Every such record shall be open to inspection byany representative of the department or police officer during reasonablebusiness hours.

 

(f) The department shall not issue a license under this law toany person who is located in any area with a residential zoning.

 

31-13-115. Providing disposal facilities by state.

 

Ifotherwise not economically available to resident owners of vehicles, thedepartment or appropriate state agency shall provide, by contract to privatepersons or political subdivisions, facilities for the collection and properdisposal of the vehicles at the request of the owner.

 

31-13-116. Penalty for violation.

 

Everyperson convicted of violating this act may be fined not to exceed five hundreddollars ($500.00), imprisoned for not more than six (6) months, or both.

 

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Wyoming > Title31 > Chapter13

CHAPTER 13 - ABANDONED VEHICLES

 

31-13-101. Definitions.

 

 

(a) As used in this act:

 

(i) Repealed by Laws 1991, ch. 241, 4.

 

(ii) "Department" means the department oftransportation;

 

(iii) "Highway" means the entire width between theboundary lines of every way publicly maintained when any part thereof is opento the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel;

 

(iv) "Lienholder" means a person holding a validsecurity interest in a vehicle;

 

(v) "Local authorities" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xix);

 

(vi) "Owner" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xxvi);

 

(vii) "Police officer" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xxxiii);

 

(viii) "Registration" means the certificate of title orcertificates and registration card issued under the laws of this statepertaining to the registration of vehicles;

 

(ix) "Vehicle" means:

 

(A) As provided by W.S. 31-5-102(a)(lviii) excepting everyvehicle which is designed for agricultural purposes and exclusively used by theowner thereof in the conduct of his agricultural operations;

 

(B) A housetrailer as provided by W.S. 31-1-101(a)(xxiii)(A)which is not installed on a permanent foundation and which is not taxable asreal property; or

 

(C) A transportable home as provided by W.S.31-1-101(a)(xxiv)(C) which is not installed on a permanent foundation and whichis not taxable as real property.

 

(x) "This act" means W.S. 31-13-101 through31-13-116.

 

31-13-102. Powers and duties of department; responsibility of thecounty.

 

 

(a) The department shall administer the provisions of this act.

 

(b) The department may adopt rules and regulations as necessaryto carry out the provisions of this act.

 

(c) The removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale ofabandoned vehicles impounded by a police officer are the responsibility of thecounty in which the vehicle is impounded.

 

31-13-103. Uniformity of provisions.

 

Theprovisions of this act shall be applicable and uniform throughout this stateand in all political subdivisions therein but any city or town may enact orenforce any ordinance on a matter covered by this act which shall supersedethis act to the extent that any conflict exists.

 

31-13-104. Abandonment on highway or property; removal; presumption ofabandonment; title to vehicle; notice of intent to impound.

 

 

(a) No person shall abandon a vehicle upon any highway.

 

(b) No person shall abandon a vehicle upon any public orprivate property without the express consent of the owner or person in lawfulpossession or control of the property.

 

(c) Any police officer who has reasonable grounds to believethat a vehicle has been abandoned may remove the vehicle, or cause it to beremoved, at the expense of the owner to a place of impoundment designated bythe county commissioners of the county in which the vehicle is impounded.Removal of an abandoned vehicle from private property by a police officer shallbe upon the written request, upon a form prescribed by the department, of theowner or person in lawful possession or control of the property. The policedepartment having jurisdiction shall immediately send a written report of theremoval by a police officer to the sheriff of the county in which the vehicleis impounded, which report shall include a description of the vehicle, thedate, time and place of removal, the grounds for removal, and place ofimpoundment of the vehicle. The sheriff of the county in which the vehicle isimpounded shall submit the report provided by the police department to thedepartment with a determination of the retail value of the vehicle as requiredin this subsection. Upon receipt of a report as provided, the department shallprovide written notification to the vehicle owner of record and to lienholdersof record, stating the grounds for removal by a police officer and the name ofthe place of impoundment of the vehicle. Notice shall not be required if theretail value of an abandoned vehicle removed by a police officer is six hundreddollars ($600.00) or less as determined by the sheriff of the county in whichthe vehicle is impounded. As to vehicles not registered in this state, thedepartment shall make a reasonable effort to notify the owner or any lienholderof removal by a police officer and the place of impoundment of the vehicle. Thedepartment shall forward a copy of the notice to the owner or person in chargeof the place of impoundment of a vehicle removed by a police officer.

 

(d) For purposes of this section a vehicle is presumed to beabandoned if it is left unattended on a highway for more than twenty-four (24)hours after a notice of intent to impound has been placed on it pursuant tosubsection (f) of this section, or on any public or private property withoutexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful possession or control of theproperty for more than five (5) days after a notice of intent to impound hasbeen placed on it pursuant to subsection (f) of this section. Notwithstandingany other provisions of law to the contrary, any vehicle left unattended onprivate property for thirty (30) days after the expiration of the consent, oralor written, of the owner or the person in lawful possession or control of theproperty is presumed abandoned five (5) days after a notice of intent toimpound has been placed on it pursuant to subsection (f) of this section. Atransportable home impounded pursuant to this section shall be disposed of inaccordance with W.S. 31-13-109.

 

(e) Except as otherwise provided by law, title to any vehicleimpounded by a police officer not reclaimed by the registered owner or anylienholder within thirty (30) days of the notice provided by subsection (c) ofthis section shall vest with the county government where the vehicle isimpounded.

 

(f) A notice of intent to impound an abandoned vehicle by apolice officer shall be placed in a prominent position on a vehicle when apolice officer reasonably believes it is abandoned. The notice of intent shallremain on the vehicle at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to removal ifabandoned on a highway and five (5) days if abandoned on public or privateproperty and impounded by a police officer.

 

31-13-105. Limitations on possession; presumption of abandonment;exceptions; expense of removal.

 

(a) No person shall possess four (4) or more abandoned vehicleson his property or on property which is in his lawful possession or control, ifany four (4) or more of the vehicles are visible from a highway for more thanthirty (30) consecutive days.

 

(b) For purposes of this section a vehicle shall be presumed tobe abandoned if it is in an inoperable condition and is not currentlyregistered.

 

(c) This section shall not apply to:

 

(i) Antique or historic motor vehicles as defined by W.S.31-1-101(a)(xv)(A);

 

(ii) Vehicles kept in an enclosed garage or storage building;

 

(iii) Vehicles used for riprap on rivers, streams or reservoirs,or for erosion control;

 

(iv) Persons licensed in accordance with W.S. 31-13-114; or

 

(v) Vehicles used for educational or instructional purposes.

 

(d) A police officer may remove, or cause to be removed, anyvehicle which has been abandoned under this section, at the expense of theperson possessing the vehicle, to a place of impoundment designated by thecounty commissioners of the county in which the vehicle is impounded. Vehiclesimpounded under this section shall be disposed of in the manner provided bythis act.

 

(e) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(f) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(g) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(h) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

31-13-106. Mailing of notice of impoundment by a police officer; noticeby publication.

 

 

(a) The notice required by W.S. 31-13-104 shall be provided bythe department by personal delivery thereof to the person to be notified or bydeposit in the United States mail of the notice in an envelope with postageprepaid, addressed to the person at his address as shown by the records of thedepartment. Notice by mail is complete upon the expiration of four (4) daysfollowing deposit of the notice. Proof of the providing of notice shall be madeby the certificate of any officer or employee of the department or affidavit ofany person over eighteen (18) years of age, naming the person to whom noticewas provided and specifying the time, place and manner thereof.

 

(b) The notice required by W.S. 31-13-104, if the identity ofthe vehicle owner of record or lienholders of record, if any, cannot bedetermined or if the registration contains no address for the owner, shall beby one (1) publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the countywhere the vehicle was abandoned. Notice by publication may contain multiplelistings of abandoned vehicles. Any notice shall be in compliance with theprovisions of subsection (a) of this section.

 

31-13-107. Redemption.

 

Anyperson upon satisfactory proof of ownership or right to possession may redeeman impounded vehicle by paying the charges of towing, storage, notice, allother costs of impoundment, and any penalties imposed by the law of this state.

 

31-13-108. Disposition of abandoned vehicles impounded by a policeofficer; payment of expenses; extinguishment of liens.

 

 

(a) As to vehicles impounded by a police officer having aretail value of six hundred dollars ($600.00) or more after thirty (30) dayshave elapsed from the date notice was given as provided in W.S. 31-13-106, thesheriff shall sell the vehicle and its contents, if any, at public auction tothe highest bidder or cause an action to be filed pursuant to W.S.31-13-112(e). Notice of the sale shall be published once in a newspaper ofgeneral circulation in the county where the vehicle is impounded not less thanten (10) days preceding the date of the sale, giving a full description of thevehicle together with engine or serial numbers or marks, if any, and the amountof money claimed to be due thereon and the time and place of sale. All expensesincident to the removal, preservation, custody, sale and storage of the vehicleshall be paid and any proceeds shall be distributed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-111.After any vehicle has been sold under this section, the former owner, anylienholder or person entitled to possession of the vehicle has no furtherright, title, claim or interest in or to the vehicle or its contents, and allliens, encumbrances and security interests are extinguished.

 

(b) As to vehicles having a retail value of less than sixhundred dollars ($600.00) and impounded by a police officer, they shall bedisposed of by contract to persons licensed under this act or by auction.

 

(c) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(d) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(e) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(f) The sheriff may sell for any person an abandoned vehicle asdefined in this act and may charge a fee for the sale equal to ten dollars($10.00) plus the actual costs of publication and all other costs related tothe sale. Except as otherwise provided in W.S. 31-13-111(f), the proceeds ofthe sale conducted pursuant to this subsection less the expenses of the saleand the amount of any liens on the vehicle shall be given to the person onwhose property the vehicle was abandoned.

 

31-13-109. Disposition of vehicles left unattended on private propertyand sold by the property owner or through a court action.

 

 

(a) Any vehicle left unattended on private property without theexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful control of the property for atleast thirty (30) consecutive days may be sold by the owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property at public auction to the highest bidder or may be soldfollowing an action filed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-112(e). The thirty (30) dayperiod begins on the first day the owner or person in lawful control of theproperty has knowledge the vehicle is left unattended without consent. Forpurposes of a vehicle left unattended without express consent at anestablishment for the service, repair or maintenance of the vehicle, the thirty(30) day period begins on the day following the period when pursuant to anagreement the vehicle was to remain at the establishment.

 

(b) After the time period provided in subsection (a) of thissection has expired, the owner or person in lawful control of the propertyshall give a written report to the department on a form prescribed by thedepartment containing the following information:

 

(i) A description of the make, year, model, license platenumber and state indicator, and vehicle identification number of the vehicle;

 

(ii) The names and addresses of the vehicle owner or driver andany lienholders if known;

 

(iii) The name and address of the owner of the property where thevehicle was left unattended;

 

(iv) The date the vehicle was left unattended without theexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful control of the property;

 

(v) If the vehicle is removed, the date, time and location ofremoval and the name and address of the person who removed the vehicle; and

 

(vi) The address of the current location of the vehicle.

 

(c) Upon receipt of the report provided in subsection (b) ofthis section, the department shall make reasonable efforts to identify theowner and any lienholders of record. The department shall forward theinformation obtained to the owner or person in lawful control of the property.

 

(d) The owner or person in lawful control of the property shallgive a written notice of sale after the thirty (30) day time period provided insubsection (a) of this section expires but not less than ten (10) dayspreceding the date of sale to the sheriff of the county in which the vehicle issold and by certified mail to the owner and any lienholder of record, if theyare identified through reasonable efforts. The owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property shall publish notice of the sale once per week for two(2) consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county wherethe vehicle is abandoned. The notice shall contain the following:

 

(i) A complete description of the make, year, model, licenseplate number and state indicator, and vehicle identification number of thevehicle;

 

(ii) The amount of money claimed for expenses incident to theremoval, preservation, custody, storage and sale and if the vehicle is leftunattended at an establishment for service, repair or maintenance, the cost ofthe services; and

 

(iii) The time and place of the sale.

 

(e) All proceeds from the sale pursuant to this section may beretained by the person selling the vehicle. The owner or lienholder is entitledto recover from the person selling the vehicle any proceeds of the sale inexcess of the costs of the sale and monies owed for expenses related toremoval, preservation, custody, storage and sale and if left unattended at anestablishment for service, repair or maintenance, the cost of the servicesprovided an action is filed in the proper court for recovery within one hundredtwenty (120) days of the sale.

 

(f) Upon receipt of satisfactory evidence from the seller thathe has complied with this section and sold the vehicle, the sheriff shallexecute a certificate of sale in duplicate for a fee of seven dollars and fiftycents ($7.50) to be deposited in the county general fund. W.S. 31-13-110 and31-13-111(a) and (f) apply to any sale under this subsection. Satisfactoryevidence of compliance requires the following:

 

(i) A copy of the record required to be filed with thedepartment;

 

(ii) A copy of the information provided by the departmentpursuant to subsection (c) of this section; and

 

(iii) Copies of the notice of the sale and proof of mailing andpublication required by subsection (d) of this section.

 

(g) At any time prior to a sale under this section, the owneror lienholder of record may reclaim the vehicle upon payment of expensesincident to removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale, and if a vehiclewas left unattended at an establishment for service, repair or maintenance, thecost of the services. Storage expenses shall be computed at the rate of fivedollars ($5.00) per day.

 

(h) A sheriff who executes a certificate of sale under thissection is not liable to any person for damages resulting from the sale of avehicle under this section.

 

(j) No person shall sell a vehicle under this section if awritten court order prohibiting the sale is served on the proposed seller. Thecourt order shall be served on the person selling the vehicle prior to the saleand shall not be issued except for good cause.

 

(k) Upon the sale of a vehicle under this section, the formerowner, any lienholder or any person entitled to possession of the vehicle hasno further right, title, claim or interest in or to the vehicle or its contentsand all liens, encumbrances and security interests are extinguished.

 

31-13-110. Certificate of sale; certificate of title and registrationcard.

 

Whenany vehicle is sold, the sheriff, at the time of payment of the purchase price,shall execute a certificate of sale in duplicate. The original certificate ofsale shall be delivered to the purchaser and the copy shall be retained by thesheriff. The certificate of sale shall contain the name and address of thepurchaser, the date of sale, the consideration paid, a description of thevehicle and a stipulation that no warranty is made as to the condition or titleof the vehicle. The purchaser upon presentation of the certificate of sale tothe county clerk of any one (1) of the counties of Wyoming, and payment of thefees required by law shall be issued a certificate of title and a registrationcard for the vehicle.

 

31-13-111. Transmission of return of sale and sale proceeds to countytreasurer; payment of expenses and taxes; county abandoned vehicle account;duplicate receipts for proceeds; action for recovery of proceeds.

 

(a) When any vehicle is sold under this act the sheriff sellingthe vehicle shall transmit to the county treasurer of the county in which thevehicle was impounded, in duplicate, a return of sale setting forth adescription of the vehicle, the purchase price, the name and address of thepurchaser, the costs incurred in the sale, removal, preservation, custody andstorage of the vehicle.

 

(b) The sheriff shall transmit to the county treasurer of thecounty in which the vehicle was impounded by a police officer, with the returnof sale, the proceeds of the sale. Upon receipt of the return of sale andproceeds, the county treasurer shall deposit the proceeds in the general fundsin the county treasury to the credit of an account to be known as the countyabandoned vehicle account. The account is continuously appropriated only forthe purpose of this act. When the account totals an amount necessary to carryout the purposes of this act, as set by the board of county commissioners forthat county, but not to exceed one dollar ($1.00) for each resident in thecounty, according to the last federal census, all revenues thereafter receivedunder this subsection and W.S. 31-3-103(f), together with all interest earnedon the account, shall be transferred to the general funds of the countytreasurer. Upon receipt of the return of sale disclosing the costs incurredthe costs shall be paid from the county abandoned vehicle account to eachperson or transferred to each governmental entity incurring the expenses. Ifthe expenses exceed the sale proceeds, the allowable expenses prescribed inparagraph (g)(ii) of this section shall be paid.

 

(c) The county treasurer shall forward to the sheriff duplicatereceipts for proceeds received by the county treasurer under subsection (b) ofthis section. The sheriff shall file one (1) of each receipt with the countyclerk.

 

(d) Repealed by Laws 1993, ch. 27, 2.

 

(e) The owner or lienholder of a vehicle impounded by a policeofficer and sold pursuant to W.S. 31-13-108 is entitled to recover from thecounty any proceeds of the sale in excess of the costs of the sale, monies owedfor expenses related to removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale of thevehicle and taxes provided an action is filed in the proper court for recoverywithin one hundred twenty (120) days of the sale.

 

(f) Notwithstanding any other provision in this act, theproceeds of the sale of any housetrailer or transportable home as defined inW.S. 31-13-101(a)(ix)(B) and (C) which is abandoned and sold pursuant to thisact shall first satisfy the costs incurred in the sale, removal, preservation,custody and storage of the vehicle. Any balance then remaining shall be paidagainst any taxes due and owing. In the event the ad valorem levy has not beenset for the current year, the current year's tax shall be computed upon thelevy for the previous year. Any remaining taxes due and owing are cancelled.

 

(g) If the vehicle was abandoned on a highway or other publicproperty, the allowable expenses shall be paid from the county abandonedvehicle account provided for by W.S. 31-13-111(b) and administered as follows:

 

(i) The county shall make reasonable efforts to locate theowner of the abandoned vehicle if the owner is known to be a resident of thecounty in which the vehicle is abandoned and to collect the expenses from thelocal owner;

 

(ii) The allowable expenses are:

 

(A) Removal or towing costs of four dollars ($4.00) for everymile the vehicle is towed or sixty dollars ($60.00) whichever is greater;

 

(B) Storage charges with a maximum amount allowed of thirtydollars ($30.00);

 

(C) Sale and title costs not to exceed thirty dollars ($30.00);and

 

(D) A two hundred dollar ($200.00) limit for the total expensesassociated with each abandoned vehicle.

 

(iii) Payment of the expenses associated with vehicles abandonedon private property shall not be provided from the county abandoned vehicleaccount.

 

31-13-112. Release of liability for removal and storage of, and for lostor damaged items in, abandoned vehicles; disposition of personal propertywithin a vehicle; optional court action.

 

(a) A person who removes or stores a vehicle under this act orotherwise at the request of a police officer, shall not incur any civilliability for the removal or storage except for failure to exercise reasonablecare in the performance of the removal or storage.

 

(b) If any vehicle is removed from any highway, or public orprivate property as provided herein, the owner of the vehicle may not institutein any state court a suit in law or equity against any police officer or hisagents for the recovery of the value of any item in or on the vehicle that maybe lost, stolen or damaged resulting therefrom.

 

(c) A person who has custody of a vehicle removed or stored orotherwise at the request of a police officer shall release the personalproperty within the vehicle to the owner of the vehicle or a person acting asagent for the owner during regular office hours upon presentation of properidentification. No charge may be assessed against the owner or agent for theremoval or release of the personal property.

 

(d) If the owner of a vehicle or his agent removes the personalproperty from a vehicle which is stored at the request of a police officer, thevehicle shall be deemed abandoned unless within ten (10) days from the date ofremoval the owner or agent enters into a written agreement to pay the fullcharges for towing and storage. The owner or agent shall be informed inwriting of this provision by the person who has custody of the vehicle beforethe personal property is released. A vehicle deemed abandoned under thissection may be disposed of as are other abandoned vehicles.

 

(e) A property owner or person in lawful control of theproperty upon which a vehicle is abandoned or any sheriff who is authorized tosell an abandoned vehicle pursuant to this act may in lieu of selling thevehicle, file or cause to be filed by the county attorney if a sheriff, anaction in the county where the vehicle is impounded in the circuit court. Theaction shall be in rem and against the vehicle, vehicle owner, and all knownand unknown parties with an interest in the vehicle. The defendants in theaction shall be served as provided in the Wyoming Rules of Civil Procedure.Judgment in the civil action is limited to the value of the vehicle asdetermined by its sale price at the sale conducted by the sheriff afterjudgment is entered. All expenses incident to the removal, preservation,custody, sale and storage of the vehicle shall be paid. Except as otherwiseprovided in W.S. 31-13-111(f), any remaining proceeds:

 

(i) Shall be distributed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-111 if avehicle is impounded by a police officer pursuant to W.S. 31-13-104; or

 

(ii) May be retained by the property owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property upon which a vehicle is abandoned who files an actionpursuant to this subsection.

 

(f) After any vehicle has been sold under subsection (e) ofthis section, the former owner, any lienholder or person entitled to possessionof the vehicle has no further right, title, claim or interest in or to thevehicle or its contents, and all liens, encumbrances and security interests areextinguished.

 

(g) As used in this section:

 

(i) "Personal property" means all property within thevehicle which is not mounted, attached or affixed to the vehicle. The cargocarried on commercial vehicles is not considered personal property;

 

(ii) "Proper identification" means identification whichwould be sufficient to establish authorization to release the vehicle.

 

31-13-113. Repealed by Laws 1993, ch. 27, 2.

 

 

31-13-114. Licensing of storage and disposal facilities; records bylicensees.

 

 

(a) No person shall, unless licensed to do so by thedepartment:

 

(i) Sell as a business used parts of or used accessories forvehicles;

 

(ii) Wreck or dismantle vehicles as a business for resale of theparts thereof;

 

(iii) Rebuild wrecked or dismantled vehicles as a business; or

 

(iv) Engage as a business in the storage or disposal ofvehicles, the parts of which are suitable for reuse or recycling.

 

(b) Application for a license shall be made on a formprescribed by the department containing the name of the applicant, the addressor addresses where the business or activity is to be conducted, the nature ofthe business or activity, enumerated in subsection (a) of this section, theresidence address of the applicant if an individual, the names and residenceaddresses of the partners of the applicant if a partnership, the names andresidence of the principal officers of the applicant, and the state of itsincorporation if a corporation. The application shall be verified by the oathor affirmation of the applicant if a sole proprietorship, by a partner if apartnership, or by an officer if a corporation. The application shall beaccompanied by a fee of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) to be paid into thehighway fund.

 

(c) The department shall issue to an applicant a license tocarry on and conduct a business or activity as specified in the application fora period of one (1) year following the date on which the license is issued. Thedepartment shall reissue the license to the applicant when it is satisfied theapplicant has complied with this act and the laws of this state relating toregistration and certificates of titles of vehicles.

 

(d) The department shall suspend or revoke a license, uponfifteen (15) days prior written notice by certified mail and after giving thelicensee an opportunity for a hearing, if it finds:

 

(i) The license was fraudulently procured or erroneouslyissued; or

 

(ii) The applicant, or any partner or principal officer of theapplicant, if a partnership or a corporation, has failed to comply with thissection and the laws of the state relating to registration of and certificatesof title of vehicles.

 

(e) Every licensee shall maintain for three (3) years, in theform the department prescribes, a record of:

 

(i) Every vehicle or vehicle body, chassis or engine of or fora vehicle received or acquired by him, its description and identifying number,the date of its receipt or acquisition, and the name and address of the personfrom whom received or acquired;

 

(ii) Every vehicle or vehicle body, chassis or engine disposedof by him, its description and identifying number, the date of its disposition,and the name and address of the person to whom disposed; and

 

(iii) Every vehicle wrecked or dismantled by him and the date ofits wrecking or dismantling. Every such record shall be open to inspection byany representative of the department or police officer during reasonablebusiness hours.

 

(f) The department shall not issue a license under this law toany person who is located in any area with a residential zoning.

 

31-13-115. Providing disposal facilities by state.

 

Ifotherwise not economically available to resident owners of vehicles, thedepartment or appropriate state agency shall provide, by contract to privatepersons or political subdivisions, facilities for the collection and properdisposal of the vehicles at the request of the owner.

 

31-13-116. Penalty for violation.

 

Everyperson convicted of violating this act may be fined not to exceed five hundreddollars ($500.00), imprisoned for not more than six (6) months, or both.

 


State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Wyoming > Title31 > Chapter13

CHAPTER 13 - ABANDONED VEHICLES

 

31-13-101. Definitions.

 

 

(a) As used in this act:

 

(i) Repealed by Laws 1991, ch. 241, 4.

 

(ii) "Department" means the department oftransportation;

 

(iii) "Highway" means the entire width between theboundary lines of every way publicly maintained when any part thereof is opento the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel;

 

(iv) "Lienholder" means a person holding a validsecurity interest in a vehicle;

 

(v) "Local authorities" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xix);

 

(vi) "Owner" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xxvi);

 

(vii) "Police officer" means as provided by W.S.31-5-102(a)(xxxiii);

 

(viii) "Registration" means the certificate of title orcertificates and registration card issued under the laws of this statepertaining to the registration of vehicles;

 

(ix) "Vehicle" means:

 

(A) As provided by W.S. 31-5-102(a)(lviii) excepting everyvehicle which is designed for agricultural purposes and exclusively used by theowner thereof in the conduct of his agricultural operations;

 

(B) A housetrailer as provided by W.S. 31-1-101(a)(xxiii)(A)which is not installed on a permanent foundation and which is not taxable asreal property; or

 

(C) A transportable home as provided by W.S.31-1-101(a)(xxiv)(C) which is not installed on a permanent foundation and whichis not taxable as real property.

 

(x) "This act" means W.S. 31-13-101 through31-13-116.

 

31-13-102. Powers and duties of department; responsibility of thecounty.

 

 

(a) The department shall administer the provisions of this act.

 

(b) The department may adopt rules and regulations as necessaryto carry out the provisions of this act.

 

(c) The removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale ofabandoned vehicles impounded by a police officer are the responsibility of thecounty in which the vehicle is impounded.

 

31-13-103. Uniformity of provisions.

 

Theprovisions of this act shall be applicable and uniform throughout this stateand in all political subdivisions therein but any city or town may enact orenforce any ordinance on a matter covered by this act which shall supersedethis act to the extent that any conflict exists.

 

31-13-104. Abandonment on highway or property; removal; presumption ofabandonment; title to vehicle; notice of intent to impound.

 

 

(a) No person shall abandon a vehicle upon any highway.

 

(b) No person shall abandon a vehicle upon any public orprivate property without the express consent of the owner or person in lawfulpossession or control of the property.

 

(c) Any police officer who has reasonable grounds to believethat a vehicle has been abandoned may remove the vehicle, or cause it to beremoved, at the expense of the owner to a place of impoundment designated bythe county commissioners of the county in which the vehicle is impounded.Removal of an abandoned vehicle from private property by a police officer shallbe upon the written request, upon a form prescribed by the department, of theowner or person in lawful possession or control of the property. The policedepartment having jurisdiction shall immediately send a written report of theremoval by a police officer to the sheriff of the county in which the vehicleis impounded, which report shall include a description of the vehicle, thedate, time and place of removal, the grounds for removal, and place ofimpoundment of the vehicle. The sheriff of the county in which the vehicle isimpounded shall submit the report provided by the police department to thedepartment with a determination of the retail value of the vehicle as requiredin this subsection. Upon receipt of a report as provided, the department shallprovide written notification to the vehicle owner of record and to lienholdersof record, stating the grounds for removal by a police officer and the name ofthe place of impoundment of the vehicle. Notice shall not be required if theretail value of an abandoned vehicle removed by a police officer is six hundreddollars ($600.00) or less as determined by the sheriff of the county in whichthe vehicle is impounded. As to vehicles not registered in this state, thedepartment shall make a reasonable effort to notify the owner or any lienholderof removal by a police officer and the place of impoundment of the vehicle. Thedepartment shall forward a copy of the notice to the owner or person in chargeof the place of impoundment of a vehicle removed by a police officer.

 

(d) For purposes of this section a vehicle is presumed to beabandoned if it is left unattended on a highway for more than twenty-four (24)hours after a notice of intent to impound has been placed on it pursuant tosubsection (f) of this section, or on any public or private property withoutexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful possession or control of theproperty for more than five (5) days after a notice of intent to impound hasbeen placed on it pursuant to subsection (f) of this section. Notwithstandingany other provisions of law to the contrary, any vehicle left unattended onprivate property for thirty (30) days after the expiration of the consent, oralor written, of the owner or the person in lawful possession or control of theproperty is presumed abandoned five (5) days after a notice of intent toimpound has been placed on it pursuant to subsection (f) of this section. Atransportable home impounded pursuant to this section shall be disposed of inaccordance with W.S. 31-13-109.

 

(e) Except as otherwise provided by law, title to any vehicleimpounded by a police officer not reclaimed by the registered owner or anylienholder within thirty (30) days of the notice provided by subsection (c) ofthis section shall vest with the county government where the vehicle isimpounded.

 

(f) A notice of intent to impound an abandoned vehicle by apolice officer shall be placed in a prominent position on a vehicle when apolice officer reasonably believes it is abandoned. The notice of intent shallremain on the vehicle at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to removal ifabandoned on a highway and five (5) days if abandoned on public or privateproperty and impounded by a police officer.

 

31-13-105. Limitations on possession; presumption of abandonment;exceptions; expense of removal.

 

(a) No person shall possess four (4) or more abandoned vehicleson his property or on property which is in his lawful possession or control, ifany four (4) or more of the vehicles are visible from a highway for more thanthirty (30) consecutive days.

 

(b) For purposes of this section a vehicle shall be presumed tobe abandoned if it is in an inoperable condition and is not currentlyregistered.

 

(c) This section shall not apply to:

 

(i) Antique or historic motor vehicles as defined by W.S.31-1-101(a)(xv)(A);

 

(ii) Vehicles kept in an enclosed garage or storage building;

 

(iii) Vehicles used for riprap on rivers, streams or reservoirs,or for erosion control;

 

(iv) Persons licensed in accordance with W.S. 31-13-114; or

 

(v) Vehicles used for educational or instructional purposes.

 

(d) A police officer may remove, or cause to be removed, anyvehicle which has been abandoned under this section, at the expense of theperson possessing the vehicle, to a place of impoundment designated by thecounty commissioners of the county in which the vehicle is impounded. Vehiclesimpounded under this section shall be disposed of in the manner provided bythis act.

 

(e) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(f) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(g) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(h) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

31-13-106. Mailing of notice of impoundment by a police officer; noticeby publication.

 

 

(a) The notice required by W.S. 31-13-104 shall be provided bythe department by personal delivery thereof to the person to be notified or bydeposit in the United States mail of the notice in an envelope with postageprepaid, addressed to the person at his address as shown by the records of thedepartment. Notice by mail is complete upon the expiration of four (4) daysfollowing deposit of the notice. Proof of the providing of notice shall be madeby the certificate of any officer or employee of the department or affidavit ofany person over eighteen (18) years of age, naming the person to whom noticewas provided and specifying the time, place and manner thereof.

 

(b) The notice required by W.S. 31-13-104, if the identity ofthe vehicle owner of record or lienholders of record, if any, cannot bedetermined or if the registration contains no address for the owner, shall beby one (1) publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the countywhere the vehicle was abandoned. Notice by publication may contain multiplelistings of abandoned vehicles. Any notice shall be in compliance with theprovisions of subsection (a) of this section.

 

31-13-107. Redemption.

 

Anyperson upon satisfactory proof of ownership or right to possession may redeeman impounded vehicle by paying the charges of towing, storage, notice, allother costs of impoundment, and any penalties imposed by the law of this state.

 

31-13-108. Disposition of abandoned vehicles impounded by a policeofficer; payment of expenses; extinguishment of liens.

 

 

(a) As to vehicles impounded by a police officer having aretail value of six hundred dollars ($600.00) or more after thirty (30) dayshave elapsed from the date notice was given as provided in W.S. 31-13-106, thesheriff shall sell the vehicle and its contents, if any, at public auction tothe highest bidder or cause an action to be filed pursuant to W.S.31-13-112(e). Notice of the sale shall be published once in a newspaper ofgeneral circulation in the county where the vehicle is impounded not less thanten (10) days preceding the date of the sale, giving a full description of thevehicle together with engine or serial numbers or marks, if any, and the amountof money claimed to be due thereon and the time and place of sale. All expensesincident to the removal, preservation, custody, sale and storage of the vehicleshall be paid and any proceeds shall be distributed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-111.After any vehicle has been sold under this section, the former owner, anylienholder or person entitled to possession of the vehicle has no furtherright, title, claim or interest in or to the vehicle or its contents, and allliens, encumbrances and security interests are extinguished.

 

(b) As to vehicles having a retail value of less than sixhundred dollars ($600.00) and impounded by a police officer, they shall bedisposed of by contract to persons licensed under this act or by auction.

 

(c) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(d) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(e) Repealed by Laws 1989, ch. 256, 4.

 

(f) The sheriff may sell for any person an abandoned vehicle asdefined in this act and may charge a fee for the sale equal to ten dollars($10.00) plus the actual costs of publication and all other costs related tothe sale. Except as otherwise provided in W.S. 31-13-111(f), the proceeds ofthe sale conducted pursuant to this subsection less the expenses of the saleand the amount of any liens on the vehicle shall be given to the person onwhose property the vehicle was abandoned.

 

31-13-109. Disposition of vehicles left unattended on private propertyand sold by the property owner or through a court action.

 

 

(a) Any vehicle left unattended on private property without theexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful control of the property for atleast thirty (30) consecutive days may be sold by the owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property at public auction to the highest bidder or may be soldfollowing an action filed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-112(e). The thirty (30) dayperiod begins on the first day the owner or person in lawful control of theproperty has knowledge the vehicle is left unattended without consent. Forpurposes of a vehicle left unattended without express consent at anestablishment for the service, repair or maintenance of the vehicle, the thirty(30) day period begins on the day following the period when pursuant to anagreement the vehicle was to remain at the establishment.

 

(b) After the time period provided in subsection (a) of thissection has expired, the owner or person in lawful control of the propertyshall give a written report to the department on a form prescribed by thedepartment containing the following information:

 

(i) A description of the make, year, model, license platenumber and state indicator, and vehicle identification number of the vehicle;

 

(ii) The names and addresses of the vehicle owner or driver andany lienholders if known;

 

(iii) The name and address of the owner of the property where thevehicle was left unattended;

 

(iv) The date the vehicle was left unattended without theexpress consent of the owner or person in lawful control of the property;

 

(v) If the vehicle is removed, the date, time and location ofremoval and the name and address of the person who removed the vehicle; and

 

(vi) The address of the current location of the vehicle.

 

(c) Upon receipt of the report provided in subsection (b) ofthis section, the department shall make reasonable efforts to identify theowner and any lienholders of record. The department shall forward theinformation obtained to the owner or person in lawful control of the property.

 

(d) The owner or person in lawful control of the property shallgive a written notice of sale after the thirty (30) day time period provided insubsection (a) of this section expires but not less than ten (10) dayspreceding the date of sale to the sheriff of the county in which the vehicle issold and by certified mail to the owner and any lienholder of record, if theyare identified through reasonable efforts. The owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property shall publish notice of the sale once per week for two(2) consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county wherethe vehicle is abandoned. The notice shall contain the following:

 

(i) A complete description of the make, year, model, licenseplate number and state indicator, and vehicle identification number of thevehicle;

 

(ii) The amount of money claimed for expenses incident to theremoval, preservation, custody, storage and sale and if the vehicle is leftunattended at an establishment for service, repair or maintenance, the cost ofthe services; and

 

(iii) The time and place of the sale.

 

(e) All proceeds from the sale pursuant to this section may beretained by the person selling the vehicle. The owner or lienholder is entitledto recover from the person selling the vehicle any proceeds of the sale inexcess of the costs of the sale and monies owed for expenses related toremoval, preservation, custody, storage and sale and if left unattended at anestablishment for service, repair or maintenance, the cost of the servicesprovided an action is filed in the proper court for recovery within one hundredtwenty (120) days of the sale.

 

(f) Upon receipt of satisfactory evidence from the seller thathe has complied with this section and sold the vehicle, the sheriff shallexecute a certificate of sale in duplicate for a fee of seven dollars and fiftycents ($7.50) to be deposited in the county general fund. W.S. 31-13-110 and31-13-111(a) and (f) apply to any sale under this subsection. Satisfactoryevidence of compliance requires the following:

 

(i) A copy of the record required to be filed with thedepartment;

 

(ii) A copy of the information provided by the departmentpursuant to subsection (c) of this section; and

 

(iii) Copies of the notice of the sale and proof of mailing andpublication required by subsection (d) of this section.

 

(g) At any time prior to a sale under this section, the owneror lienholder of record may reclaim the vehicle upon payment of expensesincident to removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale, and if a vehiclewas left unattended at an establishment for service, repair or maintenance, thecost of the services. Storage expenses shall be computed at the rate of fivedollars ($5.00) per day.

 

(h) A sheriff who executes a certificate of sale under thissection is not liable to any person for damages resulting from the sale of avehicle under this section.

 

(j) No person shall sell a vehicle under this section if awritten court order prohibiting the sale is served on the proposed seller. Thecourt order shall be served on the person selling the vehicle prior to the saleand shall not be issued except for good cause.

 

(k) Upon the sale of a vehicle under this section, the formerowner, any lienholder or any person entitled to possession of the vehicle hasno further right, title, claim or interest in or to the vehicle or its contentsand all liens, encumbrances and security interests are extinguished.

 

31-13-110. Certificate of sale; certificate of title and registrationcard.

 

Whenany vehicle is sold, the sheriff, at the time of payment of the purchase price,shall execute a certificate of sale in duplicate. The original certificate ofsale shall be delivered to the purchaser and the copy shall be retained by thesheriff. The certificate of sale shall contain the name and address of thepurchaser, the date of sale, the consideration paid, a description of thevehicle and a stipulation that no warranty is made as to the condition or titleof the vehicle. The purchaser upon presentation of the certificate of sale tothe county clerk of any one (1) of the counties of Wyoming, and payment of thefees required by law shall be issued a certificate of title and a registrationcard for the vehicle.

 

31-13-111. Transmission of return of sale and sale proceeds to countytreasurer; payment of expenses and taxes; county abandoned vehicle account;duplicate receipts for proceeds; action for recovery of proceeds.

 

(a) When any vehicle is sold under this act the sheriff sellingthe vehicle shall transmit to the county treasurer of the county in which thevehicle was impounded, in duplicate, a return of sale setting forth adescription of the vehicle, the purchase price, the name and address of thepurchaser, the costs incurred in the sale, removal, preservation, custody andstorage of the vehicle.

 

(b) The sheriff shall transmit to the county treasurer of thecounty in which the vehicle was impounded by a police officer, with the returnof sale, the proceeds of the sale. Upon receipt of the return of sale andproceeds, the county treasurer shall deposit the proceeds in the general fundsin the county treasury to the credit of an account to be known as the countyabandoned vehicle account. The account is continuously appropriated only forthe purpose of this act. When the account totals an amount necessary to carryout the purposes of this act, as set by the board of county commissioners forthat county, but not to exceed one dollar ($1.00) for each resident in thecounty, according to the last federal census, all revenues thereafter receivedunder this subsection and W.S. 31-3-103(f), together with all interest earnedon the account, shall be transferred to the general funds of the countytreasurer. Upon receipt of the return of sale disclosing the costs incurredthe costs shall be paid from the county abandoned vehicle account to eachperson or transferred to each governmental entity incurring the expenses. Ifthe expenses exceed the sale proceeds, the allowable expenses prescribed inparagraph (g)(ii) of this section shall be paid.

 

(c) The county treasurer shall forward to the sheriff duplicatereceipts for proceeds received by the county treasurer under subsection (b) ofthis section. The sheriff shall file one (1) of each receipt with the countyclerk.

 

(d) Repealed by Laws 1993, ch. 27, 2.

 

(e) The owner or lienholder of a vehicle impounded by a policeofficer and sold pursuant to W.S. 31-13-108 is entitled to recover from thecounty any proceeds of the sale in excess of the costs of the sale, monies owedfor expenses related to removal, preservation, custody, storage and sale of thevehicle and taxes provided an action is filed in the proper court for recoverywithin one hundred twenty (120) days of the sale.

 

(f) Notwithstanding any other provision in this act, theproceeds of the sale of any housetrailer or transportable home as defined inW.S. 31-13-101(a)(ix)(B) and (C) which is abandoned and sold pursuant to thisact shall first satisfy the costs incurred in the sale, removal, preservation,custody and storage of the vehicle. Any balance then remaining shall be paidagainst any taxes due and owing. In the event the ad valorem levy has not beenset for the current year, the current year's tax shall be computed upon thelevy for the previous year. Any remaining taxes due and owing are cancelled.

 

(g) If the vehicle was abandoned on a highway or other publicproperty, the allowable expenses shall be paid from the county abandonedvehicle account provided for by W.S. 31-13-111(b) and administered as follows:

 

(i) The county shall make reasonable efforts to locate theowner of the abandoned vehicle if the owner is known to be a resident of thecounty in which the vehicle is abandoned and to collect the expenses from thelocal owner;

 

(ii) The allowable expenses are:

 

(A) Removal or towing costs of four dollars ($4.00) for everymile the vehicle is towed or sixty dollars ($60.00) whichever is greater;

 

(B) Storage charges with a maximum amount allowed of thirtydollars ($30.00);

 

(C) Sale and title costs not to exceed thirty dollars ($30.00);and

 

(D) A two hundred dollar ($200.00) limit for the total expensesassociated with each abandoned vehicle.

 

(iii) Payment of the expenses associated with vehicles abandonedon private property shall not be provided from the county abandoned vehicleaccount.

 

31-13-112. Release of liability for removal and storage of, and for lostor damaged items in, abandoned vehicles; disposition of personal propertywithin a vehicle; optional court action.

 

(a) A person who removes or stores a vehicle under this act orotherwise at the request of a police officer, shall not incur any civilliability for the removal or storage except for failure to exercise reasonablecare in the performance of the removal or storage.

 

(b) If any vehicle is removed from any highway, or public orprivate property as provided herein, the owner of the vehicle may not institutein any state court a suit in law or equity against any police officer or hisagents for the recovery of the value of any item in or on the vehicle that maybe lost, stolen or damaged resulting therefrom.

 

(c) A person who has custody of a vehicle removed or stored orotherwise at the request of a police officer shall release the personalproperty within the vehicle to the owner of the vehicle or a person acting asagent for the owner during regular office hours upon presentation of properidentification. No charge may be assessed against the owner or agent for theremoval or release of the personal property.

 

(d) If the owner of a vehicle or his agent removes the personalproperty from a vehicle which is stored at the request of a police officer, thevehicle shall be deemed abandoned unless within ten (10) days from the date ofremoval the owner or agent enters into a written agreement to pay the fullcharges for towing and storage. The owner or agent shall be informed inwriting of this provision by the person who has custody of the vehicle beforethe personal property is released. A vehicle deemed abandoned under thissection may be disposed of as are other abandoned vehicles.

 

(e) A property owner or person in lawful control of theproperty upon which a vehicle is abandoned or any sheriff who is authorized tosell an abandoned vehicle pursuant to this act may in lieu of selling thevehicle, file or cause to be filed by the county attorney if a sheriff, anaction in the county where the vehicle is impounded in the circuit court. Theaction shall be in rem and against the vehicle, vehicle owner, and all knownand unknown parties with an interest in the vehicle. The defendants in theaction shall be served as provided in the Wyoming Rules of Civil Procedure.Judgment in the civil action is limited to the value of the vehicle asdetermined by its sale price at the sale conducted by the sheriff afterjudgment is entered. All expenses incident to the removal, preservation,custody, sale and storage of the vehicle shall be paid. Except as otherwiseprovided in W.S. 31-13-111(f), any remaining proceeds:

 

(i) Shall be distributed pursuant to W.S. 31-13-111 if avehicle is impounded by a police officer pursuant to W.S. 31-13-104; or

 

(ii) May be retained by the property owner or person in lawfulcontrol of the property upon which a vehicle is abandoned who files an actionpursuant to this subsection.

 

(f) After any vehicle has been sold under subsection (e) ofthis section, the former owner, any lienholder or person entitled to possessionof the vehicle has no further right, title, claim or interest in or to thevehicle or its contents, and all liens, encumbrances and security interests areextinguished.

 

(g) As used in this section:

 

(i) "Personal property" means all property within thevehicle which is not mounted, attached or affixed to the vehicle. The cargocarried on commercial vehicles is not considered personal property;

 

(ii) "Proper identification" means identification whichwould be sufficient to establish authorization to release the vehicle.

 

31-13-113. Repealed by Laws 1993, ch. 27, 2.

 

 

31-13-114. Licensing of storage and disposal facilities; records bylicensees.

 

 

(a) No person shall, unless licensed to do so by thedepartment:

 

(i) Sell as a business used parts of or used accessories forvehicles;

 

(ii) Wreck or dismantle vehicles as a business for resale of theparts thereof;

 

(iii) Rebuild wrecked or dismantled vehicles as a business; or

 

(iv) Engage as a business in the storage or disposal ofvehicles, the parts of which are suitable for reuse or recycling.

 

(b) Application for a license shall be made on a formprescribed by the department containing the name of the applicant, the addressor addresses where the business or activity is to be conducted, the nature ofthe business or activity, enumerated in subsection (a) of this section, theresidence address of the applicant if an individual, the names and residenceaddresses of the partners of the applicant if a partnership, the names andresidence of the principal officers of the applicant, and the state of itsincorporation if a corporation. The application shall be verified by the oathor affirmation of the applicant if a sole proprietorship, by a partner if apartnership, or by an officer if a corporation. The application shall beaccompanied by a fee of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) to be paid into thehighway fund.

 

(c) The department shall issue to an applicant a license tocarry on and conduct a business or activity as specified in the application fora period of one (1) year following the date on which the license is issued. Thedepartment shall reissue the license to the applicant when it is satisfied theapplicant has complied with this act and the laws of this state relating toregistration and certificates of titles of vehicles.

 

(d) The department shall suspend or revoke a license, uponfifteen (15) days prior written notice by certified mail and after giving thelicensee an opportunity for a hearing, if it finds:

 

(i) The license was fraudulently procured or erroneouslyissued; or

 

(ii) The applicant, or any partner or principal officer of theapplicant, if a partnership or a corporation, has failed to comply with thissection and the laws of the state relating to registration of and certificatesof title of vehicles.

 

(e) Every licensee shall maintain for three (3) years, in theform the department prescribes, a record of:

 

(i) Every vehicle or vehicle body, chassis or engine of or fora vehicle received or acquired by him, its description and identifying number,the date of its receipt or acquisition, and the name and address of the personfrom whom received or acquired;

 

(ii) Every vehicle or vehicle body, chassis or engine disposedof by him, its description and identifying number, the date of its disposition,and the name and address of the person to whom disposed; and

 

(iii) Every vehicle wrecked or dismantled by him and the date ofits wrecking or dismantling. Every such record shall be open to inspection byany representative of the department or police officer during reasonablebusiness hours.

 

(f) The department shall not issue a license under this law toany person who is located in any area with a residential zoning.

 

31-13-115. Providing disposal facilities by state.

 

Ifotherwise not economically available to resident owners of vehicles, thedepartment or appropriate state agency shall provide, by contract to privatepersons or political subdivisions, facilities for the collection and properdisposal of the vehicles at the request of the owner.

 

31-13-116. Penalty for violation.

 

Everyperson convicted of violating this act may be fined not to exceed five hundreddollars ($500.00), imprisoned for not more than six (6) months, or both.

 

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