Protecting Your Art in UCC States

As I mentioned in an earlier post in 30 states, an artists property is automatically protected from an art dealer’s creditors.

In 18 states, there is no default protection and a set of laws called the Uniform Commercial Code, or UCC, controls. A full list of those states can be found at the bottom of this post.

If you send art to a dealer in one of those states and are interested in protecting that art from the dealer’s creditors, you should fill out a UCC-1 form. You can find the form and how to file it by googling the state and UCC-1. Filing fees for the forms vary dramatically by state, from as little as $5 in California to $35 in Florida, for example.

Keen-eyed readers may have noticed that there are 30 states where protection is automatic, and 19 states where the UCC is the only protection for artists. New Jersey is the odd-state-out, where there is statutory protection, but it is not automatic. We’ll deal with New Jersey next week.

List of UCC Art States: Alabama, Delaware, Hawaii, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wyoming.