Georgia Code Title 43. Professions and Businesses § 43-17-8.1

(a) When any person makes a solicitation to the public by encouraging donations into a collection receptacle, the provisions of this Code section shall apply to such solicitations.

(b) If the collection receptacle is owned or operated entirely by a charitable organization exempt from taxation pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 or by a religious organization, the receptacle shall contain the following information in boldface letters at least two inches high on the front of the collection receptacle and directly underneath the deposit door stating:

(1) The name, address, website, if any, and telephone number of the charitable organization or religious organization that owns or operates the collection receptacle, from which persons may obtain additional information about the religious or charitable organization, including the address of its principal office and its telephone number;  and

(2) Whether or not the charitable organization or religious organization is registered with the Secretary of State and, if it is registered, a statement that additional information may be obtained from the Secretary of State, including the charitable or religious purpose for which the charitable organization or religious organization exists.

(c) If the collection receptacle is owned or operated entirely or in part by any entity other than a charitable organization exempt from taxation pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 or by a religious organization, then the following shall apply:

(1) In the case where any of the items collected are to be sold and none of the proceeds of such sale are to be paid over or otherwise given to a charitable organization exempt from taxation pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 or to a religious organization, it shall be unlawful for any person to collect donations of goods or tangible items in such collection receptacle unless the collection receptacle displays the following statement:  “DONATIONS ARE NOT FOR THE BENEFIT OF ANY CHARITABLE OR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION.”  The name, address, website, if any, and telephone number of the operator of the collection receptacle shall also be provided;  and

(2) In the case where any of the items collected are to be sold and some or all of the proceeds from such sale are to be paid over or otherwise given to one or more charitable organizations exempt from taxation pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code of 1986 or to a religious organization, it shall be unlawful for any person to collect donations of goods or tangible items in a collection receptacle unless the collection receptacle displays the following statement:  “THIS COLLECTION BOX IS OPERATED BY [NAME OF OPERATOR].  THE ITEMS DEPOSITED IN THIS BOX WILL BE SOLD, AND A PORTION OF THE PROCEEDS WILL BE PAID TO [NAME OF CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION OR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION].  FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THESE PAYMENTS CAN BE OBTAINED FROM [NAME OF OPERATOR] AT [ADDRESS, WEBSITE, IF ANY, AND TELEPHONE NUMBER OF THE OPERATOR] AND [ADDRESS, WEBSITE, IF ANY, AND TELEPHONE NUMBER OF THE CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION OR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION].  IN ADDITION, FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THE CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE SECRETARY OF STATE.”

The statements and all information required by paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection shall be prominently displayed in boldface letters at least two inches high located on the front of the collection receptacle and directly underneath the deposit door.

(d) The Secretary of State may by rule specify additional contact information required to be disclosed pursuant to subsections (b) and (c) of this Code section.

(e)(1) A person placing and operating any collection receptacle on property in which such person has no ownership or leasehold interest shall, prior to such placement and operation, obtain notarized, written permission from all owners of such property, a property management service, or all holders of a leasehold interest in such property to place and operate such collection receptacle on such property.  Copies of such notarized, written permission shall be maintained by the person placing and operating such collection receptacle and provided to every owner or leaseholder of such property at any time upon request by any such owner or leaseholder.  If such permission is obtained from such property owner or owners, the person placing and operating the collection receptacle shall provide written notification to any leaseholders, tenants, or other occupants of such property of the consent of such property owner or owners to such placement and operation.  The notarized, written permission required by this subsection shall include the signature of the person placing and operating the collection receptacle, or such person's authorized agent, and of all owners or leaseholders of the property, as applicable.

(2) A person with an existing collection receptacle located on property in which such person has no ownership or leasehold interest shall have until December 31, 2018, to comply with the requirements of this subsection.

(f)(1) Any owner or leaseholder of property on which a collection receptacle is placed and operated in conformance with subsection (e) of this Code section may demand removal of such collection receptacle in writing by United States mail, return receipt requested, or statutory overnight delivery to the address listed on the collection receptacle pursuant to this Code section.  Such owner or leaseholder shall also send a copy of any such demand to the office of the Secretary of State.  The person placing the collection receptacle shall remove the collection receptacle as well as any contents left in and around the collection receptacle within 30 days of the date such demand is either deposited in the United States mail, return receipt requested, or received by statutory overnight delivery.

(2) If the person placing and operating the collection receptacle on another's property fails to remove such collection receptacle as required by paragraph (1) of this subsection, any owner or any leaseholder of such property shall have the immediate right to take possession of, remove, and dispose of such collection receptacle and its contents without incurring any civil or criminal liability for such actions.  Any expenses incurred in such removal and disposal by such owner or leaseholder shall be invoiced to, and paid by, the person who placed and operated such collection receptacle on such property.  The owner or leaseholder may also request that law enforcement personnel take possession of, remove, and dispose of such collection receptacle and the contents thereof.  If law enforcement personnel, in their discretion, honor such request, they will be immune from any civil or criminal liability for such actions.

(g) Any owner or any leaseholder of the property may demand immediate removal of a collection receptacle if the person who placed and operated the collection receptacle on the property fails to comply with subsection (e) of this Code section.

(h) The person placing and operating the collection receptacle shall maintain such receptacle in a structurally sound, clean, and sanitary condition and regularly empty such receptacle at least every two weeks.  Such person shall also be responsible for ensuring that no donations are present on the ground area surrounding the collection receptacle for a time period exceeding 48 hours.

(i) Any owner or leaseholder of property who incurs expenses in removing or disposing of any collection receptacle or its contents following the expiration of the period referred to in paragraph (1) of subsection (f) of this Code section, or as a result of any violation of this Code section, may bring a civil action to recover actual damages.  The action shall be brought in a court of competent jurisdiction in the county in which the collection receptacle was located, in the county in which the person who placed and operated the collection receptacle conducts, transacts, or has transacted business, or, if such person cannot be found in any of the foregoing locations, in the county in which such receptacle is located.

(j) Any violation of this Code section shall constitute a misdemeanor.


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