2016 North Dakota Century Code
Download as PDF
AUCTIONEERS' AND CLERKS' LICENSES
51-05.1-01. Auctioneering or clerking without a license prohibited.
No person may conduct a sale as an auctioneer or clerk unless licensed by the public
51-05.1-01.1. Auctioneer's license - Clerk's license - Fees - Bonds.
1. The initial application for an annual auctioneer's or clerk's license must be in writing,
verified, and must show the name, residence, and address of the applicant. An
application must be filed at least ten days prior to the first auction sale the applicant is
to conduct or clerk. Application for renewal of an annual license must be on forms
designated by the commission. The fee for the annual license or renewal is thirty-five
dollars and must accompany the application. The name and license number must
appear on all advertising of sales conducted by an auctioneer or clerk. Renewals that
are not received by January thirty-first must be assessed an additional twenty-five
2. Before a license is issued to an auctioneer or clerk, the applicant must file a corporate
surety bond with the commission. This bond must provide annual coverage of not less
than five thousand dollars for an auctioneer or ten thousand dollars for a clerk, must
run to the state of North Dakota, and must be for the benefit of any person injured by
the licensee's improper conduct. Bonds may not be canceled on less than sixty days'
written notice to the commission. When notice of cancellation is received by the
commission, the commission, without hearing, shall revoke the license for which the
bond was issued effective with the effective date of the cancellation, unless the
licensee files a new bond or evidence that the bond will be reinstated before the
effective date of the cancellation. The size of the licensee's bond must be clearly and
prominently stated in all contracts with sellers.
A license under this chapter is not required for the following:
1. Sale of an estate by an executor or an administrator.
2. Sale by a sheriff or other person under court order.
3. Sale by a public official acting in an official capacity.
4. Sale of purebred or registered livestock.
A bond is not required for a federally insured financial institution to clerk a sale. Persons exempt
from licensing or bonding under this section shall comply with all other provisions of this chapter.
51-05.1-02. License standards.
1. Licenses may be granted only to persons who bear a good reputation for honesty,
truthfulness, and fair dealing and who are competent to transact the business of an
auctioneer or a clerk.
2. An applicant for a license must be at least eighteen years of age. Every applicant for a
license as an auctioneer shall:
a. Have been actively engaged as a licensed auctioneer for a period of at least one
year preceding the date of application; or
b. Furnish proof of satisfactory completion of an approved course of study relating to
51-05.1-02.1. Conviction not bar to licensure - Exceptions.
Conviction of an offense does not disqualify a person from licensure under this chapter
unless the public service commission determines that the offense has a direct bearing upon a
person's ability to serve the public as an auctioneer, or that, following conviction of any offense,
the person is not sufficiently rehabilitated under section 12.1-33-02.1.
Page No. 1
51-05.1-03. Investigation - Grounds for refusal, suspension, or revocation of license Hearing on appeal.
1. The public service commission upon its own motion may, and upon the verified
complaint in writing of any person shall, investigate the activities of any licensee or any
person who shall assume to act in such capacity within the state and shall have the
power to suspend or revoke a license when the licensee, in performing or attempting
to perform any of the acts included within the scope of this chapter, has performed one
or more of the following:
a. Made a material false statement in the licensee's application for a license or in
any information furnished to the commission.
b. Made a substantial and willful misrepresentation relating to an auction sale which
injures the party for which the licensee acts as agent.
c. Made any false promise of a character such as to influence, persuade, or induce
a party to an auction sale to that party's injury or damage.
d. Failed to account for or to remit, within a reasonable time, not exceeding thirty
days, any moneys coming into the licensee's possession belonging to another,
commingled funds of others with the licensee's own, failed to keep such funds or
others in an escrow or trust account with a bank or other recognized depository in
this state, or failed to keep records relative to the deposits, which must contain
such information as prescribed by the rules of the commission.
e. Pled guilty or nolo contendere before, or been convicted by, any federal court or a
court of competent jurisdiction in this or any other state of an offense determined
by the commission to have a direct bearing upon a person's ability to serve the
public as an auctioneer, or the board determines, following conviction of any
offense, that the person is not sufficiently rehabilitated under section
f. Failed or refused upon demand to produce any document, book, or records in the
licensee's possession or under the licensee's control, concerning any auction
sale under investigation by the commission.
g. Failed to deliver to the seller in every auction sale a complete, detailed closing
statement showing all the receipts and disbursements handled by such licensee
for the seller and to retain true copies of such statements in the licensee's files for
h. Violated any provisions of this chapter or chapter 41-02, 51-12, or 51-15, or rule
or regulation promulgated by the commission.
2. If the public service commission declines or fails to approve an application submitted
to it, it shall immediately give notice of that fact to the applicant, and upon request from
such applicant filed within twenty days after the receipt of such notice, shall fix a time
and place for a hearing, of which twenty days' notice must be given to such applicant
and to other persons interested or protesting, to offer such evidence relating to the
application. In such cases the commission shall fix the time for such hearing on a date
within sixty days from receipt of the request for the particular hearing, provided the
time of hearing may be continued from time to time with the consent of the applicant.
As a result of such hearing, the commission may either approve the application if all of
the applicable provisions of this chapter have been met, or it may sustain its prior
decision refusing to approve the application.
3. No license may be revoked or suspended except after hearing before the public
service commission with a copy of the charges having been duly served upon the
licensee and upon sustaining the charges for suspension or revocation. The provisions
of chapter 28-32, including but not limited to procedures for service of process,
hearing, rules, evidence, findings, and appeals, apply to and govern all proceedings
for suspension or revocation of license, except when inconsistent with this chapter.
Page No. 2
51-05.1-04. Definitions - Exceptions.
1. Except as provided in subsection 5, an auctioneer within the meaning of this chapter is
a person who, for a compensation or valuable consideration, sells or offers for sale
either real or personal property at public auction as a whole or partial vocation.
2. Except as provided in subsection 5, a clerk within the meaning of this chapter is any
person, firm, partnership, copartnership, association, corporation, or limited liability
company who, for a compensation or valuable consideration, is employed either
directly or indirectly by an owner while the sale is in progress to record each item
offered for sale, its selling price, and the buyer's name or number; to collect all
proceeds of said sale; to pay all expenses connected with the sale; to prepare a full
closing statement of all receipts and disbursements; and to make settlement thereon
to parties properly entitled thereto within a reasonable length of time.
3. "Internet auction" means the selling or offering for sale either real or personal property
at public auction exclusively via the internet.
4. "Seller" means the owner or consignor of property to be sold at auction.
5. A person performing a single act or an isolated transaction in the selling of property at
auction for another does not constitute the person performing, offering, or attempting
to perform any of the acts enumerated in this section, and that person is not an
auctioneer or clerk within the meaning of this chapter. A person conducting, or
employed by a person conducting, an internet auction is not an auctioneer or clerk
within the meaning of this chapter.
6. Notwithstanding subsection 5, a person in this state engaged in the auto auction
business via the internet must be licensed as a motor vehicle dealer as provided for in
51-05.1-04.1. Written contracts.
An auctioneer may not sell the property of another at auction without a prior written contract
with the seller which sets forth the terms and conditions upon which the auctioneer will sell the
property. A similar contract governing the activities of the auction clerk is required between the
auction clerk and the seller. The licensee must retain a copy of each contract for at least two
years after the auction. This section does not apply to consignment sales when the value of the
seller's property is less than five hundred dollars or to livestock markets. The contract must
1. The licensee's name, trade or business name, state license number, business
address, and business telephone number.
2. A general description of the property to be sold at auction, any restrictions, and a
statement identifying whether or not the licensee is authorized to purchase at the
3. A description of the services to be provided and the consideration for the services. The
description must state which party is responsible for advertising and other expenses.
4. The date or dates when the items will be sold at auction.
5. A disclosure of the amount of bond that the licensee has on file with the commission
and the commission's address and telephone number.
51-05.1-04.2. Buyer's premium.
A successful bidder may not be required to pay an amount in excess of the successful bid
and governmental fees and taxes, unless before bidding the bidder has signed a statement
which clearly describes the additional amount and states how the actual amount due will be
51-05.1-05. Handling of funds by clerk of auction sale.
Every clerk of an auction sale shall, at all times, maintain in the clerk's name or firm name, a
separate trust account designated as such in a federally insured bank or other federally insured
depository in this state in which the clerk shall immediately deposit all funds not the clerk's own,
including funds in which the clerk may have some future interest or claim. A federally insured
Page No. 3
depository located outside the state but licensed as a clerk in this state is not required to deposit
funds in a depository in this state if auction sale funds are deposited in a separate trust account
designated as such in the licensee's depository. No clerk may commingle the clerk's personal
funds or other funds in a trust account except that a clerk may deposit and keep a sum of one
hundred dollars in such account from the clerk's personal funds, which sum must be specifically
identified and deposited to cover service charges related to the trust account. In conjunction
with such account, the clerk shall maintain at the clerk's usual place of business books, records,
and other documents so that the adequacy of such account may be determined at any time.
Trust accounts and other records must be open to inspection by the public service commission
and its duly authorized agents at all times during regular business hours at the clerk's usual
place of business.
51-05.1-06. License list.
Repealed by S.L. 2001, ch. 440, § 2.
Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter is guilty of a class B misdemeanor.
Page No. 4
Title 51 Sales and Exchanges
Chapter 51-05.1 Auctioneers' and Clerks' Licenses
Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. North Dakota may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.