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Inspection Requirements and Fees
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A brand inspection (to verify ownership) is required prior to the movement of cattle and horses to an out of state destination. If the animal bears a brand not recorded to the person in possession, proof of ownership documentation must be provided.
Change of Ownership Inspections
Change of Ownership Inspections are required when the ownership of cattle is transferred to someone else (sale, gift, barter, trade, etc.). When livestock are consigned to a public livestock market, this inspection is performed automatically by WSDA staff. For a private treaty transaction, the inspection is scheduled by the seller in advance of the transaction, and should done before payment for the livestock is made. Once the inspection is performed, the buyer is provided with a certificate documenting the sale and transferring the title of the animal from the seller to the buyer.
The ability to provide self-inspection for transactions of twenty five head or less of cattle was removed from statute effective June 10, 2010. As a result, all mandatory change of ownership inspections must be performed by either a WSDA Brand Inspector or a Certified Veterinarian. Only self-inspection certificates issued for transactions that occurred prior to June 10, 2010 will be accepted as satisfactory proof of ownership.
As a result of the law change, the WSDA Livestock Inspection Program worked hard to develop an alternative inspection process that is efficient and cost-effective for our producers. The following only applies to transactions when the cattle are NOT moved out of state:
Attention Horse Owners
Change of ownership inspections are not required when selling horses unless the animal will be transported out of state. Though not required by law, WSDA strongly recommends this inspection be performed if the horse is branded, to insure the seller is the legal owner of the animal.
Yearly and Lifetime Inspection
For those individuals who repeatedly transport individual livestock out of state (cattle and horses) the Department offers two popular options. These inspections allow the livestock owner to transport the animal out of state and back again without obtaining additional inspections.
A Yearly Inspectionis valid for twelve months from the time of issue.
A Lifetime Inspection is valid until such time as the animal is sold. At the time of the inspection, the horse owner will be given a temporary certificate and a permanent ID card will be mailed later by the Olympia office.
Livestock Inspection Fees
Note: The fee for field inspections performed by the WSDA Brand Inspector of cattle or horses is the greater of the per head fee or time and mileage at $17.00 per hour and a mileage rate set by the Office of Fiscal Management.
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