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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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SECTION 256
Exceptions
Personal Property (PEP) CHAPTER 41, ARTICLE 7-B
§ 256. Exceptions. 1. If a finder takes possession of lost property
while he is upon premises with respect to which his presence is a crime,
the person in possession of the premises where the lost property was
found shall have the rights of the finder as provided in section two
hundred fifty-four of this chapter, if, before the property is delivered
to the finder by the police, he files with the police having custody of
the property a written notice asserting his rights.

2. If the finder is an officer or employee of the state or of a public
corporation and takes possession of the property in the course of his
official duty, the state or public corporation shall be deemed to be the
finder for the the purposes of section two hundred fifty-four and
section two hundred fifty-seven of this chapter. If, in any other case,
the finder is an employee under a duty to deliver the lost property to
his employer, the employer shall have the rights of the finder as
provided in section two hundred fifty-four if, before the property is
delivered to the finder by the police, he shall file with the police
having custody of the property a written notice asserting such rights.

3. If either lost property deposited with the police or an instrument
deposited with the police was discovered upon the enclosed safe deposit
premises of a safe deposit company or safe deposit department of a bank,
the police shall return it to the safe deposit company or bank at the
expiration of six months from the date of deposit. Upon receipt thereof
the safe deposit company or bank shall hold the property or instrument
as bailee for the person entitled thereto. If such person has not
claimed it at the expiration of fifteen years from the date it was
returned by the police and the property or instrument has not been
delivered to the state comptroller pursuant to an order of the supreme
court as provided in section thirteen hundred ten of the abandoned
property law, the safe deposit company or bank shall pay that portion of
such property which consists of money to the comptroller as unclaimed
property. The safe deposit company or bank shall sell such property as
does not consist of money and shall sell such instrument at a public
sale, and the proceeds from such sale, less the expenses of such sale,
including the costs of any advertising, shall be paid to the state
comptroller as unclaimed property. Any such property or instrument
determined to be valueless at such sale shall be delivered to the
comptroller as unclaimed property.

4. A person who finds or comes into possession of property or an
instrument while he is in or on a transportation facility while it is
being operated as such shall be subject to the provisions of this
article if he leaves the transportation facility at any place in this
state taking with him at the time of such departure property or an
instrument found by him in or upon the transportation facility or found
property or a found instrument of which he acquired possession while in
or upon the transportation facility. In such case the place where he
leaves the transportation facility taking the found property or
instrument with him shall be deemed for the purposes of this article to
be the place where the finding occurred or possession was acquired.

For the purposes of subdivision four of section two hundred fifty-two
of this chapter, a transportation facility shall be deemed "premises"
and "person in possession of the premises" shall include any person
actually operating a transportation facility and any officer, agent or
employee of the transportation company actually or apparently authorized
to receive delivery of the property or instrument.

For the purposes of subdivision three of section two hundred
fifty-three, a transportation facility operated by a transportation
company shall be deemed "premises" and the transportation company, or
its officer, agent or employee authorized to act with respect to custody
of lost and found property, shall be deemed to be the person in charge
of such premises.

5. Except as otherwise prescribed pursuant to section two hundred
fifty of the general municipal law, if the person who reports the
finding or acquisition of possession of found property or an instrument
is (a) a transportation company subject to the provisions of an act of
congress known as the "interstate commerce act," as amended, or engaged
in air transportation pursuant to certificate or permit of the civil
aeronautics board issued pursuant to an act of congress known as the
"civil aeronautics act of nineteen hundred thirty-eight," as amended,
and the property or instrument was found on a transportation facility
operated by such transportation company or (b) a safe deposit company or
bank and the property or instrument was found on enclosed safe deposit
premises of such safe deposit company or of the safe deposit department
of such bank, such transportation company, safe deposit company or bank
shall not be required to deposit such property or instrument at the time
the report is made, but shall within sixty days after it acquired
possession of the property or instrument deposit such property or
instrument with the police to whom the report was made, unless within
such time the property has been returned to the owner or the instrument
has been returned to a person entitled thereto. Such transportation
company, safe deposit company or bank shall hold such property or
instrument subject to inspection at any time by the police to whom the
report was made or by the police designated by an agreement pursuant to
section two hundred fifty-one of the general municipal law.

A transportation company, safe deposit company or bank retaining
possession of property or an instrument pursuant to this subdivision
after report of its acquisition of possession thereof shall (a) give
notice of its acquisition of possession of the instrument to each person
whose name and address appears on the instrument or whose name so
appears and whose address is known to it, and (b) if such transportation
company, safe deposit company or bank has reason to believe that a
person has an interest in the property or instrument and reason to know
his whereabouts, shall give notice to him of its possession. But this
paragraph does not require that a transportation company give such
notice or notices with respect to instruments enclosed in an article of
baggage or in a briefcase, purse or like article at the time it acquired
possession of such article.

6. If at any time an action or proceeding shall be commenced to
determine the right to found property or to an instrument and written
notice of such action shall be served upon the police having custody of
the property or instrument, the police shall not thereafter deliver the
property or instrument to any person except pursuant to court order.

7. This article does not supersede or limit any other statute or rule
of law governing custody or disposition of articles in the custody of
the police which constitute evidence of the commission of a crime, or
which may not lawfully be possessed, or which may not lawfully be
possessed without license.