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AGO 1949 No. 179 - December 13, 1949
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Smith Troy | 1941-1952 | Attorney General of Washington

CERTIFICATES OF BRAND INSPECTION AND CERTIFICATES OF PERMIT REQUIRED FOR TRANSPORTATION OR REMOVAL OF LIVESTOCK

An official certificate of brand inspection is required on all cattle, horses, mules and asses, listing such livestock by kind, color, brand or tattoo marks, for removal from the State of Washington.  Public carriers shall require such certificates before accepting any consignment of such animals for delivery outside the state.  Transportation of livestock on the public highways of the state must be accompanied by an official certificate of brand inspection or an original certificate of permit.

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                                                               December 13, 1949

Honorable Sverre N. Omdahl
Director of Agriculture
Old Capitol Building
Olympia, Washington                                                                                                              Cite as:  AGO 49-51 No. 179

Dear Sir:

            We have your letter asking for an opinion of this office as follows:

            "Due to the wording of Chapter 30, Section 1, Laws of 1947, amending Section 4, Chapter 75, Laws of 1937, there has arisen a question of interpretation of the meaning of the Act.  It is requested that you advise us of your opinion.

            "I. Would an official certificate of brand inspection be required on all cattle, horses, mules and asses before removing them from the State of Washington?

            "II. Would this official certificate of brand inspection have to list the animal by sex, color, brand or tattoo marks?

            "III. Could cattle, horses, mules or asses be removed from the State of Washington on a legal certificate of permit?

             [[Orig. Op. Page 2]]

            "IV. Does the statutes require a description of cattle, horses, mules and asses as to sex, color, brand and tatoo marks on a certificate of permit?

            "V. Does the statutes require any Railroad Company, Steamship Company or Ferry Boat operating inter-state [[interstate]]to have an official certificate of brand inspection before accepting any consignment of cattle, horses, mules or asses whose origin would be in the State of Washington and destination outside the State of Washington."

            The conclusion reached may be summarized as follows:

            I. An official certificate of brand inspection is required on all cattle, horses, mules and asses before removing them from the State of Washington.

            II. This official certificate of brand inspection should list the animal by kind, color, brand or tatoo marks.

            III. Cattle, horses, mules or asses cannot be removed from the State of Washington on legal certificate of permit but a certificate of brand inspection must be secured.

            IV. A description of the cattle, horses, mules and asses as to kind, color, brand and tatoo marks is required in a certificate of permit.

            V. The statute requires that any railroad company, steamship company or ferry boat operating interstate must require an official certificate of brand inspection before accepting any consignment of cattle, horses, mules or asses whose origin would be in the State of Washington and destination outside the State of Washington.

                                                                     ANALYSIS

            The law relating to transportation of livestock is § 1, chapter 30, Laws of 1947 [3169-4 Rem. Supp. 1947], which is an amendment of § 4, chapter 75, Laws of 1937, and provides as follows:

            "Any person, firm or corporation, public carrier or contract hauler transporting livestock on the public highways of the State of Washington must at all times have in his or their possession a copy of an original certificate of permitor official certificate of brand inspection to  [[Orig. Op. Page 3]] remove such animals, giving name and address of consignor, number, kinds, color and brands and tatoo marks of animals and to whom consigned.  It shall be unlawful to remove any cattle, horses, mules or asses from the State of Washington without first having secured an official certificate of brand inspection on the animals to be removed.  The failure to have certificates of permitor official certificates of brand inspection to remove or transport such animals shall be considered prima facie evidence that they are being moved on the highways of the state illegally and any peace officer shall arrest and detain such violators.  Any railroad company, steamship company or ferry boat operating within the state, or carrying on interstate or foreign commerce, before accepting consignments of livestock for shipment shall require that the consignor of any and all shipments of livestock present a certificate of permit or official certificate of brand inspection giving name and address of consignor, name and address of consignee, number, kinds, color and brands or tatoo marks of such animals, and a copy of said certificate of permitor official certificate of brand inspection shall be attached to the waybill and accompany such shipment of livestock to destination.  The original shall be mailed to the director of Agriculture, Olympia, and the triplicate copy filed in the local office of the railroad, steamship or ferry boat company, receiving the shipment and held for six (6) months, as provided in § 2 of this act."

            The underscored parts show the amendment.

            It is apparent from the examination of the above statute that either a certificate of permitor certificate of brand inspection is required for transportation within the state but not both.  However, for removal of livestock from the state, the law requires that a certificate of brand inspection be secured.

            Your questions are answered as follows:

             [[Orig. Op. Page 4]]

            I. An official certificate of brand inspection is required on all cattle, horses, mules and asses before removing them from the State of Washington.

            II. This official certificate of brand inspection should list the animal by kind, color, brand or tattoo marks.

            III. Cattle, horses, mules or asses cannot be removed from the State of Washington on a legal certificate of permit but a certificate of brand inspection must be secured.

            IV. A description of the cattle, horses, mules and asses as to kind, color, brand and tattoo marks is required in a certificate of permit.

            V. The statute requires that any railroad company, steamship company or ferry boat operating interstate must require an official certificate of brand inspection before accepting any consignment of cattle, horses, mules or asses whose origin would be in the State of Washington and destination outside the State of Washington.

Very truly yours,

SMITH TROY
Attorney General

JUNE FOWLES
Assistant Attorney General

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