Code of the District of Columbia

§ 47–2837. Secondhand dealers; classification; licensing; stolen property.

(a) The Council of the District of Columbia is authorized and empowered to classify dealers in secondhand personal property (referred to in this section as “dealers”) and the Mayor of the District of Columbia is authorized and empowered to fix and collect a license fee for each such class of dealer, which fee, in the judgment of the Mayor, will be commensurate with the cost to the District of Columbia of inspection, supervision, and regulation of such class of dealer.

(b) In classifying dealers the Council may take into consideration the kind of property dealt in, whether the property is retained by the dealer for sale at retail, whether the property is disposed of by the dealer out of the District of Columbia, whether the property is disposed of by the dealer as junk or otherwise, and such other criteria as the Council may deem appropriate.

(c) Any person engaging in the business of buying, selling, trading, exchanging, or dealing in secondhand personal property of any description, including the return of unused portion of any ticket, order, or token purporting to evidence the right of the holder or possessor thereof to be transported by any railroad or other common carrier, however operated, from one state or territory of the United States, or from the District of Columbia, to any other state or territory of the United States or to the District of Columbia, shall be regarded as a dealer, and shall obtain the appropriate license and pay the fee therefor fixed by the Mayor. For the purposes of this section, the term “secondhand personal property” shall not include any item of personal property:

(1) Which the possessor thereof has acquired as part payment or allowance on the sale by such possessor of a new or rebuilt item of personal property;

(2) Which the possessor thereof has acquired by reason of its return to him for credit, refund, or exchange by a person having purchased such item from such possessor; or

(3) Which is offered for sale, trade, or exchange by the person who repossesses the same.

(d) [Repealed].

(e) Any license issued pursuant to this section for Class A and Class C shall be issued as an Inspected Sales and Services endorsement to a basic business license under the basic business license system as set forth in subchapter I-A of this chapter. Any other license issued pursuant to this section shall be issued as a General Sales endorsement to a basic business license.


(July 1, 1902, 32 Stat. 627, ch. 1352, § 7, par. 39; July 1, 1932, 47 Stat. 558, ch. 366; July 3, 1956, 70 Stat. 491, ch. 511, § 1; enacted, Apr. 9, 1997, D.C. Law 11-254, § 2, 44 DCR 1575; Apr. 20, 1999, D.C. Law 12-261, § 2003(pp)(33), 46 DCR 3142; Oct. 28, 2003, D.C. Law 15-38, § 3(hh)(4)(V), 50 DCR 6913; Dec. 13, 2013, D.C. Law 20-50, § 2(a), 60 DCR 15151.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 47-2837.

1973 Ed., § 47-2339.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-38, in subsec. (e), substituted “as an Inspected Sales and Services endorsement to a basic business license under the basic” for “as a Class A Inspected Sales and Services endorsement to a master business license under the master” and “General Sales endorsement to a basic ” for “Class B General Sales endorsement to a master”.

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-50 repealed (d), which read: “When any property has been stolen and sold in the District of Columbia to a dealer under such circumstances that the Mayor of the District of Columbia, after such dealer has been afforded a hearing, is satisfied that such dealer had cause to believe, or could have ascertained by reasonable inquiry or investigation that the property was stolen, and that the dealer did not make reasonable inquiry or investigation as to the title of the seller before making the purchase, the Mayor is authorized and directed to revoke the license of such dealer; and this action shall not be a bar to criminal prosecution for receiving stolen goods; provided, that nothing in this subsection shall be construed as prohibiting the Mayor from suspending or revoking the license of such dealer under the authority contained in § 47-2844.”

Cross References

Mayor, Council and other offices, application of certain sections to boards, commissions and committees, see § 1-321.02.

Mayor, Council and other offices, police power regulations, authorization, see § 1-303.01.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 3(hh)(4)(V) of Streamlining Regulation Emergency Act of 2003 (D.C. Act 15-145, August 11, 2003, 50 DCR 6896).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of the Personal Property Robbery Prevention Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-142, July 31, 2013, 60 DCR 11796, 20 DCSTAT 1987).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of the Personal Property Robbery Prevention Second Emergency Amendment Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-199, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15330).