-- Last Updated: Nov-14-12 5:03 PM EST --
A good buddy had a canoe wash up onto his landing on the local river with some damage to it. The local police noticed it and talked to him about it and after few days notified him that they hadn't heard anything about a "missing" canoe so it was his to do what he wanted with. Looks like it's going to end up in my shop for some repairs and become mine. He has listed it on Craigslist in an effort to find the owner, good on his part.
I won't mention the brand quite yet but it is a nice canoe and the fixes are fairly easily done with minimal work. With the police involved and saying go ahead I still have this nagging little voice in my head that maybe I should contact the maker, local also, with the HIN and see if they have a record of who bought it or just keep it for a resale in the spring!
I guess there is a difference between "Finders Keepers" and "Salvage" but most of it has to do with maritime and not rivers on the interior.
Any thoughts or opinions? Going to pick up the boat tomorrow night.
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Posted by: tktoo on Nov-14-12 5:32 PM (EST)
If a call to the maker is all it would take to allay your guilt, I'd say do it.
Put it aside and wait. Don't lose time |
Posted by: ezwater on Nov-14-12 11:29 PM (EST)
and work messing with it, only to have the owner show up and claim it.
Posted by: mintjulep on Nov-15-12 7:55 AM (EST)
It just doesn't sound right to me that the police have the right to give something away on the basis that no one has reported it missing yet.
There are thieves|
Posted by: Cliffjrs on Nov-15-12 8:01 AM (EST)
and there are good samaritans.
It may be that the cops don't|
Posted by: tktoo on Nov-15-12 8:30 AM (EST)
have the authority to dispose of lost property without following protocol perhaps requiring a specified waiting period. It does seem like maritime salvage laws wouldn't apply here, but who knows in the "Live for free canoes or die." state?
Posted by: krash on Nov-15-12 8:57 AM (EST)
If it were in Florida, later in the life of that canoe were the latest claimant/owner you would have issues registering it. In Florida if you decide to add a trolling motor it must be registered, and to do so the person registering it must present paper work. The first thing the want is "Statement of Origin" which is issued by the manufacturer, if you have that its clear registration and paddling. The next best thing is the title (issued by the state when its registered the first time) and a bill of sale.
Posted by: dougd on Nov-15-12 10:24 AM (EST)
I emailed the manufactorer and am waiting to hear back as to whether they have records or not, they should. Once I have the hull over here I can get the HIN to send on to them. Guess it's the best I can do, eh?
I'm glad those aren't my policemen|
Posted by: mrmannerz on Nov-15-12 12:10 PM (EST)
I'm not much for religion, but...
Police have no authority ...|
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Nov-15-12 1:31 PM (EST)
... to determine who owns something. They only deal with whether something is a crime. It may not be a crime to keep something you find, the the real owner may still have civil claims against you.
Posted by: old_user on Nov-15-12 1:52 PM (EST)
Posted by: thebob.com on Nov-15-12 2:37 PM (EST)
I think a "concerted/good faith effort" to try & return the boat to it's "legal owner" is the best bet.
Posted by: dougd on Nov-16-12 7:35 AM (EST)
The night before....|
Posted by: openboater on Nov-16-12 8:40 AM (EST)
Perhaps Mike had a "late night" prioor to that days production. ;)
So How Are the Numbers?|
Posted by: dougd on Nov-16-12 8:54 AM (EST)
Rob, Just curious but how are those numbers stamped exactly? Are they separate pieces pieced together or something?
What Ranger Told Me|
Posted by: dougd on Nov-16-12 9:08 AM (EST)
They ship the canoes out to dealers so they don't have records and being an older canoe they suggested I contact local clubs and post there which I have. Will wait a week or so and then call it my own to fix. Seems fair to me!
Good boat, have you weighed it yet?|
Posted by: tktoo on Nov-16-12 9:34 AM (EST)
I looked over one at KTP years ago. The only composite canoe they had. Appeared to be a quality layup and *very* reminiscent of Jim Henry's designs. Good price, too.
Applied to mold prior to gelcoating|
Posted by: openboater on Nov-17-12 7:13 AM (EST)
Basically a number plate is put on the inside of the mold with the HIN#. Then the gel coat is sprayed, leaving an imprinted # on the hull when it's all cured.
Posted by: mintjulep on Nov-16-12 3:22 PM (EST)
So a bit of curious research yields that in the absence of a specific state statute common law prevails. That is, if and whenever the "true owner" can be established you need to give it back.
Think I Did My Part|
Posted by: dougd on Nov-16-12 4:04 PM (EST)
So far I've posted on a bunch of local message boards, it's posted on Craigslist, I contacted Ranger. Not sure what else I can do to try to find an owner. Laws vary state to state so maybe I'm a winner in this case. If I was approached by a ligit owner I would gladly hand over the boat. Hell, I've got 5 already and room for hulls is stressed already. But, it is a sweet hull.