60.56.005. Definition of "agister."
For purposes of this chapter "agister" means a farmer, ranchman, herder of cattle, livery and boarding stable keeper, veterinarian, or other person, to whom horses, mules, cattle, or sheep are entrusted for the purpose of feeding, herding, pasturing, training, caring for, or ranching.
60.56.010. Liens created
Any agister shall have a lien upon the horses, mules, cattle, or sheep, and upon the proceeds or accounts receivable from such animals, for such amount that may be due for the feeding, herding, pasturing, training, caring for, and ranching of the animals, and shall be authorized to retain possession of the horses, mules, cattle, or sheep, until the amount is paid or the lien expires, whichever first occurs. The lien attaches on the date such amounts are due and payable but are unpaid.
60.56.015. Liens perfected
An agister who holds a lien under RCW 60.56.010 shall perfect the lien by (1) posting notice of the lien in a conspicuous location on the premises where the lien holder is keeping the animal or animals, (2) providing a copy of the posted notice to the owner of the animal or animals, and (3) providing a copy of the posted notice to any lien creditor as defined in RCW 62A.9A-102(52) if the amount of the agister lien is in excess of one thousand five hundred dollars. A lien creditor may be determined through a search under RCW 62A.9A-523 and 62A.9A-526. The lien holder is entitled to collect from the buyer, the seller, or the person selling on a commission basis if there is a failure to make payment to the perfected lien holder.
60.56.018. Potential sale of animal to which lien is attached--Notice to lien holder and potential buyer
A party subject to a lien under RCW 60.56.010 shall notify (1) the lien holder of a potential sale of the animal or animals to which the lien is attached, (2) a potential buyer of the existence of the unsatisfied lien against the animal or animals for sale, and (3) any lien holder of record of the potential sale of the animal or animals and of the existence of the unsatisfied lien.
60.56.021. Violation of RCW 60.56.018--Civil action for damages--Civil fine
A person injured by a violation of RCW 60.56.018 may bring civil action in the appropriate court of jurisdiction to recover the actual damages sustained, together with the costs of the suit, including reasonable attorney fees and any other costs associated with satisfaction of the lien. The court may, in its discretion, increase the award of damages to an amount not to exceed three times the actual damages sustained.
If damages are awarded under this section, the court may impose on a liable party a civil fine of not more than one thousand dollars to be paid to the plaintiff.
60.56.025. Lien created for care of animal seized by law enforcement officer
If a law enforcement officer authorizes removal of an animal pursuant to chapter 16.52 RCW, the person or entity receiving the animal and aiding in its care or restoration to health shall have a lien upon the animal for the cost of feeding, pasturing, and caring otherwise for the animal. The lien attaches on the date such costs are due and payable but are unpaid. Any such person is authorized to retain possession of the animal until such costs are paid or the lien expires, whichever first occurs.
60.56.035. Expiration of lien
Any lien created by this chapter shall expire one hundred eighty days after it attaches, unless, within that period, an action to enforce the lien is filed pursuant to RCW 60.56.050.
60.56.050. Enforcement of lien
Any person having a lien under the provisions of this chapter may enforce the same under chapter 60.10 RCW or, at the agister's option, by an action in any court of competent jurisdiction. If enforcement is through court proceeding, the property may be sold on execution for the purpose of satisfying the amount of the judgment and costs of sale, together with the proper costs of keeping the same up to the time of the sale.
Reviewed by AAHS in July 2001.
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