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§36-8-12. Public sale of abandoned property.

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, the administrator, within three years after the receipt of abandoned property, shall sell it to the highest bidder at public sale at a location in the state which in the judgment of the administrator affords the most favorable market for the property. The administrator may decline the highest bid and reoffer the property for sale if the administrator considers the bid to be insufficient. The administrator need not offer the property for sale if the administrator considers that the probable cost of sale will exceed the proceeds of the sale. A sale held under this section must be preceded by a single publication of notice, at least three weeks before sale, in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the property is to be sold.

(b) Securities listed on an established stock exchange must be sold at prices prevailing on the exchange at the time of sale. Other securities may be sold over the counter at prices prevailing at the time of sale or by any reasonable method selected by the administrator. If securities are sold by the administrator before the expiration of three years after their delivery to the administrator, a person making a claim under this article before the end of the three-year period is entitled to the proceeds of the sale of the securities less any deduction for expenses of sale. A person making a claim under this article after the expiration of the three-year period is entitled to receive the securities delivered to the administrator by the holder, if they still remain in the custody of the administrator, or the net proceeds received from sale, and is not entitled to receive any appreciation in the value of the property occurring after delivery to the administrator, except in a case of intentional misconduct or malfeasance by the administrator.

(c) A purchaser of property at a sale conducted by the administrator pursuant to this article takes the property free of all claims of the owner or previous holder and of all persons claiming through or under them. The administrator shall execute all documents necessary to complete the transfer of ownership.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2017 Regular Session
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