Vermont Metal Scrap Statute

The State Metals Theft Laws summaries are not intended to provide or be relied as a legal advice. This material is provided to serve as a reasonable compilation of the most current state scrap laws and is intended to be a resource or supplement to, and provide ideas for, compliance with all applicable laws. The ISRI State Scrap Laws are subject to change and readers should visit to make certain they are reading the most recent version of ISRI's summaries of the State Metals Theft Laws
Overview of Provisions (use the section titles to travel directly to that section)

Please Note: Amendments by 2014 Vermont HB 872, effective July 1, 2014, adding "Railroad Scrap" to the list of covered materials are included and noted in this summary.

Materials Covered and Other Definitions

"Scrap Metal" means any manufactured item or article that contains metal.

"Ferrous Scrap" means any Scrap Metal consisting primarily of iron, steel, or both, including large manufactured articles such as automobile bodies that may contain other substances to be removed and sorted during normal processing operations of Scrap Metal.

"Nonferrous Scrap" means any Scrap Metal consisting primarily of metal other than iron or steel, and does not include aluminum beverage cans, post-consumer household items, items removed during building renovations or demolitions, or large manufactured items containing small quantities of nonferrous metals such as automobile bodies and appliances.

"Metal Article" means any manufactured item consisting of metal that is usable for its originally intended purpose without processing, repair, or alteration, including railings, copper or aluminum wire, copper pipe and tubing, bronze cemetery plaques, urns, markers, plumbing fixtures, and cast-iron radiators.

"Proprietary Article" means any of the following:

  • Any Metal Article stamped, engraved, stenciled, or marked as being or having been the property of a governmental entity, public utility, or a transportation, shipbuilding, ship repair, mining, or manufacturing company;
  • Any hard-drawn copper electrical conductor, cable, or wire greater than 0.375 inches in diameter, stranded or solid;
  • Any aluminum conductor, cable, or wire greater than 0.75 inches in diameter, stranded or solid;
  • Metal beer kegs;
  • Manhole covers; or
  • Catalytic converters.

(added by HB 872) "Railroad Scrap" means any Scrap Metal consisting primarily of the steel components used in rolling stock and railroad tracks, including rails, joint bars, tie plates, anchors, turnouts, frogs, and spikes, as well as railroad signals and signal components.

"Scrap Metal Processor" means:

  • A salvage yard, as defined in 24 V.S.A. Section 2241(7); or
  • A person engaged in purchasing Ferrous or Nonferrous Scrap, Metal Articles, or Proprietary Articles, whether for resale or for processing into raw material products consisting of prepared grades.

"Scrap Metal Processor" does not include:

  • A salvage yard as described in 24 V.S.A. Section 2248(e); or
  • A salvage yard or dealer that only accepts or dismantles motor vehicles and flattens or crushes the vehicles for transport to a Processor.

For Nonferrous Scrap, Metal Articles, Proprietary Articles, and Railroad Scrap, a Processor must record in a permanent ledger: (reference to Railroad Scrap added by HB 872)

  • The Seller's full name, current address, and date of birth from a current government-issued photo ID;
  • Time and Date of the transaction;
  • License number of the Seller's vehicle;
  • Description of the items received;
  • If available, documentation establishing that the Seller lawfully owns the material, such as a bill of sale, receipt, letter of authorization, or similar. If ownership documentation is not provided, Reporting and Hold provisions apply.

Records must be retained at least 5 years at the Processor's normal place of business or other readily accessible and secure location.


Records shall be made available on request to any law enforcement official or authorized security agent of a governmental entity who provides official credentials at the Scrap Metal Processor's business location during regular business hours.


If the Seller does not provide ownership documentation, a Processor must submit a report to the Department of Public Safety by the close of the following business day that describes the material and the Seller's identifying information.


If the Seller does not provide ownership documentation, a Processor must hold the material for at least 10 days following the purchase.


A processor who violates the provisions shall be fined:

  • 1st offense: a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000 for each transaction;
  • 2nd or subsequent: fined not more than $25,000 for each transaction.

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This summary of State Metals Theft Laws is being viewed on this website under license and is owned and copyrighted by Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. ("ISRI"),1615 L Street, N.W., Suite 600, Washington, DC 20036.