CHAPTER 23 ABANDONED MOTOR VEHICLES
63-23-1. Purpose of chapter.
63-23-3. "Abandoned motor vehicle" defined.
63-23-5. Sale or disposal of vehicle generally; notification of lienholders; report of sale; disposition of proceeds of sale.
63-23-7. Determination of status of vehicle under title law prior to disposition of vehicle.
63-23-9. Notification of registered owner and lienholders of record prior to disposition of vehicle.
63-23-11. Claim of vehicle prior to sale.

§ 63-23-1. Purpose of chapter.

The intent of this chapter is to provide a means for removing abandoned motor vehicles from the right-of-way and open lands of the state to enhance the beauty of the countryside and the health and welfare of its citizens. It is also to provide a means of relieving automobile dealers, repairmen, and others dealing in motor vehicles from unnecessary storage of deteriorated cars which prevent the use of such floorspace or property for storage for hire or use in their business, and is therefore in the public interest.

Sources: Codes, 1942, § 8125-104; Laws, 1970, ch. 481, § 4, eff 60 days after passage (approved April 6, 1970).


§ 63-23-3. "Abandoned motor vehicle" defined.

For the purposes of this chapter, an "abandoned motor vehicle" shall mean a motor vehicle as defined by the Mississippi Motor Vehicle Title Law:

(a) which has been left by the owner, or some person acting for the owner, with an automobile dealer, repairman or wrecker service for repair or for some other reason and has not been called for by such owner or other person within a period of forty (40) days after the time agreed upon or within forty (40) days after such vehicle is turned over to such dealer, repairman or wrecker service when no time is agreed upon.

(b) which is left unattended on a public street, road or highway or other public property for a period of at least five (5) days.

(c) which has been lawfully towed onto the property of another at the written request of a law enforcement officer and left there for a period of not less than forty (40) days without any one having made claim thereto.

Sources: Codes, 1942, § 8125-101; Laws, 1970, ch. 481, § 1; Laws, 1974, ch. 448, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved March 26, 1974).


§ 63-23-5. Sale or disposal of vehicle generally; notification of lienholders; report of sale; disposition of proceeds of sale.


(1) Any automobile dealer, wrecker service, or repair service owner, or any person or party on whose property a motor vehicle is lawfully towed at the written request of a law enforcement officer, who shall have an abandoned motor vehicle on his property, may sell, free and clear of all claims such motor vehicle by public auction, or if the abandoned motor vehicle has no market value, may dispose of the same after having received at least two (2) written statements from licensed automobile dealers as to the worthlessness of such motor vehicle and after compliance with subsection (2) of this section and
Section 21-39-21, the proceeds of the sale in excess of the repairs, towing, storage or other necessary expenses incurred shall escheat to the general fund of the municipality.

(2) The person authorized to execute the sale or disposal of an abandoned motor vehicle shall notify, within ten (10) days of receipt of such vehicle, any Mississippi lienholder on such vehicle that unless a claim on the vehicle is made within thirty (30) days of such notice, the vehicle will be sold or destroyed.

(3) After the sale of any vehicle as set out hereinabove is made, the person or officer designated and making the sale of such property shall promptly upon completion of the sale deliver to the chancery clerk a list or itemization of the property sold, the amount paid for each item, the person to whom each item was sold, and all moneys received from such sale, the gross charges levied by the person making the sale against the property sold and the net amount paid over to the chancery clerk. Any sale made by any person, officer, corporation or association, shall have attached to the report of sale a sworn statement certifying as to the date such personal property or items sold first came into his possession or was abandoned on his premises and the date said personal property or item was sold.

(4) The proceeds of the sale in excess of repair, towing and storage expenses and all expenses incurred in connection with a sale when a sale is made under the provisions of this chapter, shall escheat to the county and shall be paid over to the chancery clerk to be placed into the general fund of the county in which the vehicle is abandoned. However, in those municipalities availing themselves of the provisions of

Sources: Codes, 1942, §§ 8125-102, 8125-103; Laws, 1970, ch. 481, §§ 2, 3; Laws, 1974, ch. 448, § 2; Laws, 1990, ch. 410, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1990.


§ 63-23-7. Determination of status of vehicle under title law prior to disposition of vehicle.

Prior to disposition of an abandoned motor vehicle any automobile dealer, wrecker service or repair service owner, or any person on whose property such a vehicle is lawfully towed at the written request of a law enforcement officer, shall inquire of the motor vehicle comptroller as to status of the vehicle in regard to the Mississippi Motor Vehicle Title Law. Said inquiry shall provide the description of the vehicle including the vehicle identification number. Upon request of the motor vehicle comptroller, satisfactory evidence must be furnished as to abandonment in compliance with this chapter. Upon receipt of notification of the foregoing, the motor vehicle comptroller shall advise any automobile dealer, wrecker service or repair service owner, or any person on whose property such a vehicle is lawfully towed at the written request of a law enforcement officer, of proper titling procedures, where indicated, depending upon method of disposition of the vehicle.

Sources: Codes, 1942, § 8125-102; Laws, 1970, ch. 481, § 2, eff 60 days after passage (approved April 6, 1970).



§ 63-23-9. Notification of registered owner and lienholders of record prior to disposition of vehicle.

The last-known registered owner of an abandoned motor vehicle and all lienholders of record, when such information is reasonably obtainable, shall be notified by registered or certified mail that such vehicle will be sold pursuant to the provisions of this chapter. Said notice shall give such owner and lienholders the date, time and place of sale and name of the person or party who has custody of such vehicle.

If the identity of the last registered owner cannot be determined, or if the registration contains no address for the owner, or if it is impossible to determine with reasonable certainty the identity and addresses of all lienholders, notice by three publications once each week for three consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the motor vehicle was abandoned shall be sufficient to meet all requirements of notice pursuant to this chapter.

Sources: Codes, 1942, § 8125-102; Laws, 1970, ch. 481, § 2, eff 60 days after passage (approved April 6, 1970).



§ 63-23-11. Claim of vehicle prior to sale.


Any person proving ownership or any lienholder may claim subject motor vehicle at any time prior to sale by paying towing, repair, storage and other necessary expenses incurred.


Sources: Codes, 1942, § 8125-102; Laws, 1970, ch. 481, § 2, eff 60 days after passage (approved April 6, 1970). Section 63-23-9. An abandoned motor vehicle as defined by Section 63-23-3(b) shall not be sold at auction until thirty (30) days from date of removal from a public street, road or highway.