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Thread: When to stop searching and when to start searching for the original owner...

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  1. #16

    Mar 2007
    Salinas, CA
    Explorer II, Compass 77b, Tesoro shadow X2
    13,524
    9856 times
    Banner Finds (4)
    Quote Originally Posted by b3y0nd3r View Post
    If he is aware that they were stolen, then yes. Otherwise, it's fair game.
    I would agree with you.

    But legally speaking, that's not the law .... as it is written. The law doesn't leave it up to the individual finder to decide "stolen vs not stolen", "abandoned vs not-abandoned", "lost a long time ago vs lost-recently", etc..... It merely states a dollar value cut-off point.

    Again, not saying I don't agree with you, but .... just sayin', that if the question were one of legalities, all of us md'rs are lawless miscreants.
    Metal detecting is my one worldy vice!

  2. #17
    us
    Only boaring people get board

    Nov 2018
    The Thumb
    Quest Pro Garrett AT Pro Whites ID5 classic pro
    278
    418 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    I would only look for owner if it was obvious, if its not obvious then its finders keepers for this guy...

  3. #18
    us
    Mar 2019
    KY
    Fisher Research Labs F2
    59
    31 times
    Metal Detecting
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom_in_CA View Post
    I would agree with you.

    But legally speaking, that's not the law .... as it is written. The law doesn't leave it up to the individual finder to decide "stolen vs not stolen", "abandoned vs not-abandoned", "lost a long time ago vs lost-recently", etc..... It merely states a dollar value cut-off point.

    Again, not saying I don't agree with you, but .... just sayin', that if the question were one of legalities, all of us md'rs are lawless miscreants.
    I would love to see a court case make it way all the way up to the US Supreme Court challenging these L&F laws as violations of due process (not saying they are, just saying that's one possible legal argument the finder could potentially make).

    I think that despite what the law says, I think with the right facts, a court could modify or strike down these laws on public policy grounds, using the argument that the finder should be compensated for what he or she did (find a lost object of value). I'm thinking about the laws in England (or are they UK laws?) where certain relics found by a metal detector must be turned in to the appropriate authorities and then returned to the finder or fair market compensation provided if the relic is kept by the government or public institution (source: Brandon Neice, aka: Dr. Tones).

  4. #19

    Mar 2007
    Salinas, CA
    Explorer II, Compass 77b, Tesoro shadow X2
    13,524
    9856 times
    Banner Finds (4)
    Quote Originally Posted by mh9162013 View Post
    I would love to see a court case make it way all the way up to the US Supreme Court challenging these L&F laws as violations of due process (not saying they are, just saying that's one possible legal argument the finder could potentially make).

    I think that despite what the law says, I think with the right facts, a court could modify or strike down these laws on public policy grounds, using the argument that the finder should be compensated for what he or she did (find a lost object of value). I'm thinking about the laws in England (or are they UK laws?) where certain relics found by a metal detector must be turned in to the appropriate authorities and then returned to the finder or fair market compensation provided if the relic is kept by the government or public institution (source: Brandon Neice, aka: Dr. Tones).
    Good post mh-9162013 . Keep in mind that the UK laws, that you speak of, would a) never apply to this topic, and b) never apply to the USA

    Because: a) Those "wonderful" UK laws you allude to , do not apply to personal property (eg.: if someone just lost their Apple I-phone there), and b) the "crown" here in the USA does not own all the resources @ the ground. Versus in the UK, where .... yes ..... resources (oil, gold, coal, etc...) on/under the ground does belong the crown, in the UK.

    Thus those UK rules have utterly no-bearing on the subject. Nor should/would we seek any such laws here in the USA. Lest ..... we simply open up a bigger can-of-worms, and only get STRICTER laws employed against us. D/t our "swatting hornet's nests".
    Metal detecting is my one worldy vice!

  5. #20
    us
    Mar 2019
    KY
    Fisher Research Labs F2
    59
    31 times
    Metal Detecting
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom_in_CA View Post
    Good post mh-9162013 . Keep in mind that the UK laws, that you speak of, would a) never apply to this topic, and b) never apply to the USA

    Because: a) Those "wonderful" UK laws you allude to , do not apply to personal property (eg.: if someone just lost their Apple I-phone there), and b) the "crown" here in the USA does not own all the resources @ the ground. Versus in the UK, where .... yes ..... resources (oil, gold, coal, etc...) on/under the ground does belong the crown, in the UK.

    Thus those UK rules have utterly no-bearing on the subject. Nor should/would we seek any such laws here in the USA. Lest ..... we simply open up a bigger can-of-worms, and only get STRICTER laws employed against us. D/t our "swatting hornet's nests".
    I was thinking an American L&F law could be a heavily modified version of the UK law. Something along the lines of:

    You find something of value (what the threshold should be, I have no idea, but $300 sounds like a good number) and you're legally required to take it to an appropriate authority (let's say your local police department). The authority would have some website or publication where they list things that have been found. They list it and if it's not claimed within a set period of time (30 days, for example), you get to keep it. If it is claimed and the owner can prove ownership, the only way they can get it back is to pay the finder the greater of fair market value of what it took to find the item or 50% of the item's fair market value (could be any percentage really, but I would think 25% would be the minimum). If the owner doesn't want to pay, then they don't get the item back and it stays with the finder. The only way to owner can get out of paying to recover the lost item is to show that they were making a reasonable and good faith ACTIVE effort to find the item at the time it was found.

    The bottom line is that I don't think we, as a society, should be allowing owners of items that have been long lost to recover the item when they aren't willing to spend the time or effort to search for the item themselves.
    Last edited by mh9162013; Apr 11, 2019 at 01:32 PM.
    Hunter101 likes this.

 

 
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