What are my lost and found property rights?

UPDATED: Dec 30, 2011

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What are my lost and found property rights?

I found an extremely nice gold necklace about 2 weeks ago and have put ads out to try and find the rightful owner. For whatever reasons I don’t fully trust handing this piece over to the police though my gut tells me I probably should. I would rather do the due diligence myself and try to find the owner on my own. It is a 24K gold rope necklace that is 24 inches long had it appraised around 13K and I wont go into other details for respect of the rightful owner. Legally should I and do I have to turn this into the police?- it was found on the side of a road in a pouch- and nobody has answered any of my ads. Can I continue to search for the owner on my own and after X amount of attempts and days can I assume ownership enough to sell it?

Asked on December 30, 2011 under Criminal Law, Kansas


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

In reality, you need to let your own conscience be your own guide as to whether or not you want to turn the gold necklace that you found over to law enforcement after your ad for the owner of the item to contact you runs out.

Personally you should turn the item over to the police department in the jurisdiction where you found it. The police department in that jurisdiction may have a policy that after a certain period of time where a lost article is not claimed, the person finding it gets to keep it as his or her reward for doing the right thing.

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