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Oregon State Laws

Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) is the source of laws that govern the State of Oregon. The Oregon State Legislature maintains the statutes. Further information and highlights on select laws in Oregon below. Review the full Statue for all details. 


Metal theft and transporting metal.
ORS 164.857
More details
How do I get a blank Metal Transportation Certificate?
Search our form database for Metal Transportation Certificate. A seller can make a metal transportation certificate, and it must contain this statutorily required information:
  • Date the metal property was acquired and the amount and type of metal property;
  • Location where loaded and the destination;
  • Name, address and telephone number of the seller or the transferor;
  • Signature of the seller or transferor or the authorized agent of the seller or transferor; and
  • Name, address, and telephone number of the person transporting the metal property.
Also note:
  • For commercial businesses transporting metals, an alternative document such as a bill of lading is sufficient.
  • Although not required, it is recommended to keep the MTC on file for two years.
  • A scrap metal business is not required to verify the seller has an MTC.
  • The MTC is designed to protect the owner and to assist police in metal theft investigations.
Scrap Metal Businesses
The law requires business to notify the local law enforcement agency within 24 hours of the occurrence of the purchase or receipt of metal property:
  1. The business person has good reason to know was the subject of theft or has been unlawfully altered;
  2. Including metallic wire from which the insulation has been removed (unless the seller provides documentation proving that wire is owned by the seller and the insulation was removed by accident or by legitimate means or for a legitimate purpose);
  3. From a person other than a commercial seller, employee, agent or other individual authorized by a commercial seller who has a commercial account with the scrap metal business;
  4. From someone known or suspected to be under 16 years of age;
  5. From a person who has been convicted within the past five years of any crimes referenced within the bill, related to drugs, theft, robbery, burglary, and/or possession of stolen property.
It is recommended you consult your local District Attorney regarding an alternative plan

Important facts related to the law:
  1. For purposes of the new law, Monday through Friday are the only days of the week considered as business days. Weekends including legal holidays are not considered business days even if the business is open.
  2. The business can use common English terms to describe the metal purchased. The ISRI (Identify Language Institute of Scrap Metal Recycling Industries) Circular is no longer required.
  3. A Post Office (P.O.) Box address may be used to transmit payment in a metal property transaction if the P.O. Box is listed on government issued photo identification, i.e., driver’s license, state-issued identification card, etc.
  4. The business is not required to inspect/review the Metal Transportation Certificate (MTC). The MTC is designed for law enforcement inspections while the metal is being transported. The MTC is required for each transport. Although it is not required, it is recommended for the transporter to retain the MTC for two years.

Commercial Accounts
Scrap metal businesses are required to create a commercial account with a “commercial seller” (as defined in the law) before purchasing or receiving the metal property.

The main differences between a commercial seller with a commercial account and a noncommercial seller are as follows: a scrap metal business may purchase commercial metal property from a commercial seller without reporting the sale to a law enforcement agency. A commercial seller is subject to the record keeping requirements. A scrap metal business is not limited in the manner in which the business compensates commercial sellers of metal property.

Non-Commercial Accounts
All payments to individuals who are not associated with a commercial account must be made with a nontransferable check transmitted by mail to the seller. Upon receipt of payment, the individual receiving the payment may choose to do what they wish with those funds. The buyer of the scrap metal is not allowed to send the funds to any person or entity other than the seller.

A Post Office (P.O.) Box address may be used in a metal property transaction instead of a physical address provided that the P.O. Box is listed on government issued photo identification.

As a scrap metal business owner, could I or one of my employees be cited by police for transporting metal without a Metal Transportation Certificate?
It is up to the officer’s discretion whether or not to issue a citation. It is a defense to a charge of unlawfully transporting metal property if you are the owner, agent of, or an employee of the owner. As the owner you may be required to provide proof to the court that the metal belonged to you.

Do I need a Metal Transportation Certificate if I plan only to recycle the metal (not sell it)?
If you are planning to recycle metal property at a government entity that accepts metal property for recycling you are not required to carry a Metal Transportation Certificate.

What does the phrase “knows or has good reason to know” mean related to metal transportation?
As it applies to the crime of Unlawfully Purchasing or Receiving Metal Property, the phrase relates to what a reasonable person would know based on the totality of the circumstances. For further clarification it is recommended you contact your local District Attorney’s Office.

How are scrap metal businesses to determine if insulation has been removed by burning, melting insulation from metallic wire?
Buyers need to be aware of a substantial and unjustifiable risk that the insulation has been removed. Basically, if a reasonable person would suspect that the wire had been removed other than from normal business activity, i.e., contractor or other related business, then appropriate documentation is required.

Are scrap metal businesses required to notify police when property owners sell sprinkler-heads or copper pipe?
Unless the property owner is a commercial seller with a commercial account, the answer is yes. Sprinkler-heads and copper pipe(s) are commercial metal property, and businesses are required to report the purchase of the commercial metal property from an individual who is not associated with a commercial account.​