Abandonded Skidder: Mine?

Discuss non-crawler related issues here (keep it sane, please)
Post Reply
User avatar
CuttingEdge
1010 crawler
1010 crawler
Posts: 420
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2014 5:13 pm
Location: Maine

Abandonded Skidder: Mine?

Post by CuttingEdge » Tue Sep 11, 2018 5:24 am

As you guys know, as of January my cancer progressed to the point where I stopped logging. I then hired a logging contractor to come in log off some of my woodlot, him taking 72 tractor trailer loads of wood, and never paying me. That has since progressed through the court process with good results, however what is perplexing is a skidder the logger left behind.

The skidder (525 Cat Grapple Skidder) was left behind 6 months ago. I know when my ex-wife left her car on my land 6 months after she won it after our divorce, the State police came, inspected the car, and gave me a clear title to the vehicle. I am not sure if this applies to heavy equipment or not. I did secure a lien on it due to the amount of money owed for my stolen wood; in Maine the laws stating a landowner has first rights because a bank has other options to recoup their money, while a landowner does not. When asked about ownership though, my attorney is unsure about the skidder ownership. My good friend, the sheriff in this county, says it takes a lot of paperwork to secure it.

The problem is, who do I send the paperwork too? I am pretty sure it was a leased tractor, but to whom I do not know. My plan was to send them a letter saying they owe me $20 a day storage fee, for the 180 days (plus) that it has been sitting here, along with the decontamination fees from the 20 gallons of hydraulic fluid it has leaked all over the place. (It is in sad, sad shape). I feel this is fair.

The tractor does run, and I could use it around the farm, mostly for removing the stumps that I eventually grub out of the ground. Obviously it might be worth fixing up a free tractor, but then someone said part suppliers now require seriel numbers and might come up as a stolen tractor if I try to get parts for it. I do technically own it, but only partly so (a lien upon it) so it is a big mess. Another thought was just to park it down in the back forty and slowly part the thing out. Part by part, I could get far more money then I could by taking it to a scrap yard and getting money on a per ton of steel basis.

Anyone run into this before?
I have no intention of traveling to my grave in a well manicured body; instead I am going to slide into heaven with a big power turn, totally wore out with busted knuckles, jump off my dozer loudly yelling, Woo Hoo, another Shepard has just arrived!

User avatar
Stan Disbrow
350 crawler
350 crawler
Posts: 2658
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2005 3:13 pm
Location: Raleigh, NC

Re: Abandonded Skidder: Mine?

Post by Stan Disbrow » Tue Sep 11, 2018 6:08 am

Hi,

Yes, but in NC, so may be different. Had to file an Abandoned Property notice with the court. After six months, if no one came and got it, the court issued me a Title. So, even if leased, it was mine. If they reported it stolen, all I need is a copy of the court order and the parts man has to ignore the stolen item report. Or, he gets to go see the judge.

In your case, you might want to go see what that serial number turns up. It may well be the logger who left it already swiped it. Maybe by not paying the lease and then telling the owner it was stolen from him. And, waiting for someone to find it on your place so you wind up charged....

Stan
There's No Such Thing As A Cheap Crawler!

Have: '58 JD 420c 5-roller w/62 inside manual blade
Have: '78 JD350C w/6310 outside manual blade
Useta Have: '68 JD350, '51 Terratrac GT-25
Also Have: 1950 M, 2005 x495, 2008 5103 (now known as 5045D)

dtoots1
2010 crawler
2010 crawler
Posts: 685
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:54 am
Location: akron, ohio

Re: Abandonded Skidder: Mine?

Post by dtoots1 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:32 am

So Stan,
What was the cost of going thru the court and filing? Lawyer involved?

User avatar
Lavoy
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 9865
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 8:32 pm
Location: North Dakota
Contact:

Re: Abandonded Skidder: Mine?

Post by Lavoy » Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:29 am

There should be a way to do a lien search, I know when I was at the dealership, they had to do it on any piece of equipment that was traded in. I never did it, so don't know the mechanics of it, but we always filed lien's with the county I think on anything sold that had a loan on it that we originated. I just can't remember what it was called, too many years ago.
I would park the machine where they can't find it or get at it so someone does not try to get it back when you aren't around, and this includes the bank that holds the lien if there is one. I went through this many, many years ago with a bank that held the note on a trailer I was holding as collateral. The bank tried many times to come and get it, but couldn't as it was on private property and the owner had told me to hold it to make sure I was paid in the bankruptcy. In my case, I am sure a good lawyer could have got it from me, but you have a filed lien, and a different law then we do here, so you are in even better shape.
Lavoy
Parts and restoration for antique and late model John Deere crawlers.
Owner and moderator www.jdcrawlers.com

User avatar
Stan Disbrow
350 crawler
350 crawler
Posts: 2658
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2005 3:13 pm
Location: Raleigh, NC

Re: Abandonded Skidder: Mine?

Post by Stan Disbrow » Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:16 pm

Hi,

I did use a lawyer, but it was $50 bux more to do so, so why not let someone who heads to the courthouse on a daily basis make an easy fifty? ;)

It was $110 for the court. The only bad part was the time it sat here before the filing didn't count. In the end, no one came looking for it anyway. But it was good to have my ducklings in a line when I sold it off.

You could chain it to a tree, but that probably would hardly slow anyone up there down. :P

Stan
There's No Such Thing As A Cheap Crawler!

Have: '58 JD 420c 5-roller w/62 inside manual blade
Have: '78 JD350C w/6310 outside manual blade
Useta Have: '68 JD350, '51 Terratrac GT-25
Also Have: 1950 M, 2005 x495, 2008 5103 (now known as 5045D)

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests