2021 Georgia Code
Title 44 - Property
Chapter 12 - Rights in Personalty
Article 3 - Bailments
Part 5 - Pawnbrokers
§ 44-12-130. Definitions

Universal Citation: GA Code § 44-12-130 (2021)

As used in this part, the term:

  1. "Month" means that period of time from one date in a calendar month to the corresponding date in the following calendar month, but if there is no such corresponding date, then the last day of such following month.
  2. "Pawnbroker" means any person engaged in whole or in part in the business of lending money on the security of pledged goods, or in the business of purchasing tangible personal property on the condition that it may be redeemed or repurchased by the seller for a fixed price within a fixed period of time, or in the business of purchasing tangible personal property from persons or sources other than manufacturers or licensed dealers as a part of or in conjunction with the business activities described in this paragraph.
  3. "Pawn transaction" means any loan on the security of pledged goods or any purchase of pledged goods on the condition that the pledged goods may be redeemed or repurchased by the pledgor or seller for a fixed price within a fixed period of time.
  4. "Person" means an individual, partnership, corporation, joint venture, trust, association, or any other legal entity however organized.
  5. "Pledged goods" means tangible personal property, including, without limitation, all types of motor vehicles or any motor vehicle certificate of title, which property is purchased by, deposited with, or otherwise actually delivered into the possession of a pawnbroker in connection with a pawn transaction.However, for purposes of this Code section, possession of any motor vehicle certificate of title which has come into the possession of a pawnbroker through a pawn transaction made in accordance with law shall be conclusively deemed to be possession of the motor vehicle, and the pawnbroker shall retain physical possession of the motor vehicle certificate of title for the entire length of the pawn transaction but shall not be required in any way to retain physical possession of the motor vehicle at any time. "Pledged goods" shall not include choses in action, securities, or printed evidences of indebtedness.

(Ga. L. 1977, p. 1194, § 1; Ga. L. 1989, p. 819, § 1; Ga. L. 1992, p. 3245, §§ 1, 2.)

Law reviews.

- For annual survey of local government law, see 57 Mercer L. Rev. 289 (2005). For note on 1992 amendment of this Code section, see 9 Ga. St. U.L. Rev. 323 (1992).


Construction with §§ 44-12-131 and 44-12-137. - In resolving a statutory conflict between O.C.G.A. §§ 44-12-130(1) and44-12-137(a)(7) with respect to the one-month duration for a pawn transaction and O.C.G.A. § 44-12-131(a)(1) which required a duration of 30 days, it was determined that the criminal penalty in § 44-12-137(a)(7) was inapplicable to a customer's pawn transaction that satisfied the 30-day requirement of § 44-12-131(a)(1); the customer's action against the pawnbroker based on an illegal duration accordingly failed. Marshall v. Speedee Cash, 292 Ga. App. 790, 665 S.E.2d 888 (2008).

Pawnbroker's right to self-help.

- Although O.C.G.A. §§ 44-12-130(5) and44-12-131(a)(3) grant the pawnbroker the right to self-help repossession upon default without the necessity of filing a lien, this remedy is intended to apply to the defaulting pledgor, not a bona fide purchaser for value with no notice of the pawnbroker's claim. Cobb Ctr. Pawn & Jewelry Brokers, Inc. v. Gordon, 242 Ga. App. 73, 529 S.E.2d 138 (2000).

Debtor without interest in property not redeemed from pawnbroker.

- The automatic stay did not apply to a pawnbroker as: (1) the debtor filed a 2016 case one day before the redemption period for a title pawn transaction expired, and the redemption period was extended to 60 days from the petition date; (2) the debtor failed to redeem the vehicle when the redemption period expired and on the redemption date, the vehicle belonged to the pawnbroker and the debtor's ownership interest in the vehicle was automatically extinguished; (3) the debtor had no interest in the vehicle when the 2018 bankruptcy case was filed that could become property of the bankruptcy estate; and (4) the 2018 Chapter 13 Plan's treatment of the vehicle as the debtor's property was immaterial as the redemption period had expired pre-petition and the vehicle belonged to the pawnbroker. TitleMax of Georgia, Inc. v. Thorpe (In re Thorpe), 612 Bankr. 463 (Bankr. S.D. Ga. 2019).

County ordinance not in conflict.

- Since the stated purpose of Gwinnett County, Ga., Ord. No. 82-11 was to impede the sale of stolen property, and its requirements were designed to achieve that end, it was a proper use of the county's police power, and was not in conflict with O.C.G.A. § 44-12-130 et seq. Pawnmart, Inc. v. Gwinnett County, 279 Ga. 19, 608 S.E.2d 639 (2005).

Cited in Bell v. Instant Car Title Loans (In re Bell), 279 Bankr. 890 (Bankr. N.D. Ga. 2002); In re Chastagner, 498 Bankr. 376 (Bankr. S.D. Ga. 2013).


Am. Jur. 2d.

- 54 Am. Jur. 2d, Moneylenders and Pawnbrokers, §§ 6, 7.


- 70 C.J.S., Pawnbrokers, § 2.


- Validity of statutes, ordinances, and regulations governing pawn shops, 16 A.L.R.6th 219.

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