What should I do with found property?

The Oregon Finder's Law:

If you are the finder of money or goods, you may claim it under ORS 98.005 if the original owner cannot be found.  If you wish to claim the property, you must indicate your intent to do so at the time of your report.  If you wish to claim the property under the Finder's Law, with the exception of weapons, the property will be left in the finder's possession.  Vehicles are not subject to the Finder's Law, as they are individually titled. 

If you have found money or jewelry believed to be valued at more than $250.00, the Sheriff's Office strongly recommends that you contact our Dispatch Center before your proceed.  For your information, we may elect to retain items with significant value to assist with locating the rightful owner. 

If the property is something other than jewelry or money, and is valued at $250.00 or more, you must place an advertisement in the local newspaper.  The ad must run once a week for two consecutive weeks, and must begin within 20 days of finding the property.  The ad shall provide:

  • A general description of the money or property found
  • The name and address of the finder
  • The final date before which goods may be claimed

If an owner is located after initiating these procedures, you will be notified.  If, within three months of the report, no claims are made on the property, it will become the finder's legal property.

If you choose, you may relinquish the property to the Lane County Sheriff's Office.  You will be asked to sign a document waiving your rights to the property, and it will be placed in the Sheriff's Office found property awaiting release to the owner, if located. 

If you are inquiring about claiming or picking up property that is currently in our custody and is related to a Sheriff's Office case, you may call the Sheriff's Office Property/Evidence Unit at 541-682-4332.  This is a recorded line only.  Please leave your name, callback number, a good time to reach you, and a case number.  Someone will contact you within 24-48 hours, excluding weekends and legal holidays.