2016 Illinois Compiled Statutes
Chapter 765 - PROPERTY
765 ILCS 1033/ - Museum Disposition of Property Act.

(765 ILCS 1033/1)
Sec. 1. Short Title. This Act may be cited as the Museum Disposition of Property Act.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/5)
Sec. 5. Purposes. The purposes of this Act are to establish the ownership of loaned property that has been abandoned by the lender or undocumented property held by a museum, to establish uniform procedures for the termination of loans of property to museums, to allow museums to conserve or dispose of loaned or undocumented property under certain conditions, and to limit actions to recover loaned or undocumented property.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/10)
Sec. 10. Definitions. As used in this Act, unless the context requires otherwise:
"Museum" means an institution or entity located in Illinois that:
(i) is operated by a non-profit corporation, trust,

association, public agency, or educational institution;

(ii) is operated primarily for educational,

scientific, historic preservation, cultural, or aesthetic purposes; and

(iii) owns, borrows, cares for, exhibits, studies,

archives, or catalogues property.

"Museum" includes, but is not limited to, historical societies, historic sites, landmarks, parks, archives, monuments, botanical gardens, arboreta, zoos, nature centers, planetaria, aquaria, libraries, technology centers, and art, history, science, and natural history museums.
"Property" means documents or tangible objects, animate or inanimate, in the custody of a museum.
"Person" means an individual, association, partnership, corporation, trust, estate, or other entity having a legal interest in property in the custody of a museum.
"Lender" means a person whose name appears on the records of a museum as the person legally entitled to property held by the museum.
"Claimant" means a person, other than the lender of record, who claims to be legally entitled to, or who establishes his or her legal entitlement to, property held by the museum.
"Lender's or claimant's address" means a description of the most recent location of a lender or claimant, as indicated on the museum's records pertaining to the property on loan from the lender or claimant, sufficient for the purpose of delivering mail.
"Loan" means a deposit of property with a museum that is not accompanied by a transfer of title to the property or other evidence of donative intent; however, "loan" does not include a consignment of property for sale.
"Permanent loan" means a loan of property to a museum for an indefinite term.
"Undocumented property" means property:
(i) that is held by a museum;
(ii) that is assumed to be a gift to the museum; and
(iii) whose ownership cannot be determined by

reference to the museum's records.

(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/15)
Sec. 15. Notice Requirements.
(a) In addition to any other information that may be appropriate for a particular notice, all notices given under this Act must contain the following information:
(1) the lender's or claimant's name, if known;
(2) the lender's or claimant's address, if known;
(3) a brief description of the property on loan to

the museum;

(4) the date of the loan, if known, or the

approximate date the property came into the custody of the museum;

(5) the name of the museum; and
(6) the name, address, and telephone number of the

appropriate museum official or office to be contacted regarding the property.

(b) A notice mailed to a lender or claimant shall be sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the lender's or claimant's address. The notice shall be mailed on a "restricted delivery" basis when the notice is directed to a natural person. Notice is deemed given if the museum receives, within 60 days of mailing the notice, a return receipt showing delivery to the lender or claimant. The date of a notice for purposes of this Act is deemed to be the date of delivery to the person to whom it was sent.
(c) If notice is not given in accordance with subsection (b) or if, after a diligent search of its records, a museum does not know the identity of the lender or any claimant or have the lender's or claimant's address, notice may be given by publication, in which case notice shall be published:
(1) for at least once per week for 3 successive weeks

in a newspaper of general circulation in the county or municipality in which the museum is located; and

(2) if the museum has in its records the lender's or

claimant's address, for at least once per week for 3 successive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county or municipality in which the lender's or claimant's address is located.

For purposes of this Act, the date of a notice given under this subsection (c) shall be the date of the last published notice under either subdivision (1) or (2), whichever is later.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/20)
Sec. 20. Conservation or Disposal of Loaned Property.
(a) Unless there is a written loan agreement to the contrary, a museum may apply conservation measures to or dispose of undocumented property or property on loan to the museum without the lender's or claimant's permission or formal notice if immediate action is required to protect the property on loan or other property in the custody of the museum, or because the property on loan has become a hazard to the health and safety of the public or to the museum's staff, and if one of the following applies:
(1) the property poses an immediate destructive risk

to the museum's staff or collection or the general public, in which case the museum may dispose of the property without delay and shall notify the lender of the action taken within 30 days;

(2) the museum is unable to reach the lender or

claimant at the lender's or claimant's address or phone number, if the action is to be taken within 30 days of the time the museum determines the action is necessary; or

(3) the museum contacts the lender and the lender or

claimant does not agree to the protective measures the museum recommends and does not or is unable to terminate the loan and collect the property within the time the museum determines the action is necessary.

(b) Unless an agreement provides otherwise, a museum that applies conservation measures to or disposes of loaned property in accordance with subsection (a):
(1) acquires and may enforce a lien on the loaned

property in the amount of the costs incurred by the museum; and

(2) is not liable to the lender or claimant for

damage to, or loss of, the loaned property if the museum:

(A) had a reasonable belief at the time the

action was taken that the action was necessary to protect the loaned property or other property in the custody of the museum, or that the loaned property was a hazard to the health and safety of the public or to the museum's staff; and

(B) exercised reasonable care in choosing and

applying the conservation measures.

(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/30)
Sec. 30. Notice of Intent to Terminate a Loan; Acquiring Title to Loaned Property.
(a) A museum may acquire title to loaned property pursuant to this Section. A museum may give notice of the museum's intent to terminate a loan of property at any time if:
(1) the property was loaned to the museum for an

indefinite term; or

(2) the property was loaned to the museum for a

specified term, and that term has expired.

(b) A mailed notice of intent to terminate a loan shall include a statement containing substantially the following information:
"The records of (name of museum) indicate that you have property on loan to it. The museum hereby terminates the loan. If you desire to claim the property, you must contact the museum, establish your ownership of the property, and make arrangements to collect the property. If you fail to do so within one year after the date of this notice, you will be considered to have donated the property to the museum."
(c) If a lender or claimant does not respond to the notice of intent to terminate the loan within one year from the date of the notice, the museum acquires title to the property and may sell, dispose of, or retain the property.
(d) If a lender or claimant responds to the notice of intent to terminate the loan within one year from the date of the notice, but does not collect the property within 90 days from the date of his or her response, and unless a loan agreement provides otherwise, the museum may place the property in storage and the museum acquires and may enforce a lien on the property in the amount of the costs incurred. If the lender or claimant fails to make arrangements to collect the property after one year from the date of notice, the museum acquires title to the property and may sell, dispose of, or retain the property.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/35)
Sec. 35. Acquiring Title to Undocumented Property. Property in the possession of a museum for which the museum does not know the owner or have any reasonable means of determining the owner becomes the property of the museum if no person has claimed the property within 7 years after the museum can document possession of the property. The museum becomes the owner of the property on the day after the 7-year period ends, free from all claims. This Section does not apply to stolen or confiscated property.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/40)
Sec. 40. Limitation on Actions Against Museums.
(a) No action shall be brought against a museum or its employees, agents, officers, or trustees for damages because of injury or damage to, or loss of, property loaned to the museum more than 2 years after the date the museum gives the lender or claimant notice of the damage or loss.
(b) No action shall be brought against a museum or its employees, agents, officers, or trustees to recover loaned or undocumented property more than 2 years after the date the museum gives the lender or claimant notice of its intent to terminate the loan or notice of the museum's assertion of title to undocumented property.
(c) No action shall be brought against a museum or its employees, agents, officers, or trustees to recover loaned property more than 2 years after the expiration date of the last written contract between the lender or claimant and the museum as evidenced by the museum's records.
(d) A lender or claimant is deemed to have donated loaned property to a museum if the lender or claimant fails to contact the museum and establish his or her claim to the property to the satisfaction of the museum or fails to file an action to recover the property on loan to the museum within the period specified in subsections (b) and (c).
(e) A person who purchases property from a museum acquires title to the property if the museum represents that it has acquired title to the property pursuant to this Act.
(f) Notwithstanding subsections (d) and (e), a lender or claimant who was not given notice of intent to terminate a loan or notice of the museum's assertion of title to undocumented property as prescribed herein, respectively, and who proves that the museum received a satisfactory notice of interest in the property, may recover the property or, if the property has been disposed of, the reasonable value of the property at the time the property was discarded. The amount received by the museum upon a sale made in good faith of the loaned property shall be regarded as the prima facie evidence of that value, and in no event shall any recovery include interest or an amount to compensate for currency devaluation or inflation, or both.
(g) A museum is not liable at any time, in the absence of a court order, for returning property to the original lender, even if a claimant other than the lender of record has filed a notice of interest in the property. If persons claim competing interest in property in the custody of a museum, the burden is upon the claimants to prove their interest in an action in equity initiated by a claimant. A museum is not liable at any time for returning property to an uncontested claimant who produces reasonable proof of ownership.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/45)
Sec. 45. Obligations.
(a) Obligations of a museum.
(1) A museum holding loaned property on or after the

effective date of this Act shall notify the lender, if known, by mail, of the provisions of this Act within the term of the loan but not more than 5 years after the effective date of this Act. A museum accepting a loan of property on or after the effective date of this Act shall inform the lender in writing at the time of the loan of the provisions of this Act. A copy of this Act or a citation to the provisions of this Act within the loan agreement shall fulfill this obligation.

(2) A museum is responsible for notifying a lender or

claimant of the museum's change of address or dissolution.

(3) A museum shall retain all written records

regarding property acquired under this Act for at least 10 years or until the dissolution of the museum, whichever occurs earlier.

(b) Obligations of a lender or claimant.
(1) A lender, a lender's heir or legal agent, or a

claimant is responsible for notifying the museum promptly, in writing, if there is any change in ownership of the objects (whether through inter vivos transfer or death) or if there is a change in the identity or address of the lender.

(2) A lender or claimant may file with the museum a

written notice of interest in the property. A notice of interest in the property shall:

(A) contain an adequate description of the

property to enable the museum to identify the property;

(B) be accompanied by documentation sufficient to

establish the lender or claimant as the owner of the property; and

(C) be signed under penalty of perjury by the

lender or claimant, or by a person authorized to act on behalf of the lender or claimant.

The filing of a notice of interest in the property on

loan to a museum does not validate or make enforceable any claim which would be extinguished under the terms of a written agreement, or which would otherwise be invalid or unenforceable.

(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/50)
Sec. 50. Miscellaneous Provisions.
(a) This Act does not abrogate the rights and obligations of a lender, claimant, or museum identified in a written agreement.
(b) This Act applies to all property held by or in the custody of a museum on or after the effective date of this Act.
(c) This Act does not preclude a museum from availing itself of any other statutory or judicial method of establishing or perfecting title to property in the museum's custody.
(d) If a museum's right under this Act is wrongfully challenged, the museum shall have the right to recover its costs and expenses and reasonable attorney's fees.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


(765 ILCS 1033/900)
Sec. 900. (Amendatory provisions; text omitted).
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99; text omitted.)


(765 ILCS 1033/999)
Sec. 999. Effective date. This Act takes effect on January 1, 1999.
(Source: P.A. 90-604, eff. 1-1-99.)


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