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The Florida Senate

2012 Florida Statutes

F.S. 534.54
534.54 Cattle or hog processors; prompt payment; penalty; lien.
(1) As used in this section:
(a) “Livestock” means cattle or hogs.
(b) “Meat processor” means a person, corporation, association, or other legal entity engaged in the business of slaughtering cattle or hogs.
(2)(a) A meat processor who purchases livestock from a seller, or any person, corporation, association, or other legal entity who purchases livestock from a seller for slaughter, shall make payment by cash or check for the purchase price of the livestock and actually deliver the cash or check to the seller or her or his representative at the location where the purchaser takes physical possession of the livestock on the day the transfer of possession occurs or shall wire transfer of funds on the business day within which the possession of said livestock is transferred. However, if the transfer of possession is accomplished after normal banking hours, said payment shall be made in the manner herein provided not later than the close of the first business day following said transfer of possession. In the case of “grade and yield” selling, the purchaser shall make payment by wire transfer of funds or by personal or cashier’s check by registered mail postmarked not later than the close of the first business day following determination of “grade and yield.”
(b) All instruments issued in payment hereunder shall be drawn on banking institutions which are so located as not artificially to delay collection of funds through the mail or otherwise cause an undue lapse of time in the clearance process.
(3) In all cases in which a purchaser who purchases livestock for slaughter from a seller fails to make payment for the livestock as required by this section or artificially delays collection of funds for the payment of the livestock, the purchaser shall be liable to pay the owner of the livestock, in addition to the price of the livestock:
(a) Twelve percent damages on the amount of the price.
(b) Interest on the purchase price of the livestock at the highest legal rate from and after the transfer of possession until payment is made as required by this section.
(c) A reasonable attorney’s fee for the prosecution of collection of the payment.
(4)(a) Any person, partnership, firm, corporation, or other organization which sells livestock shall have a lien on such animal and its carcass, all products therefrom, and proceeds thereof to secure all or a part of its sales price.
(b) The lien provided in this subsection shall be deemed to have attached and to be perfected upon delivery of the livestock to the purchaser without further action, and such lien shall continue in the livestock and its carcass, all products therefrom, and proceeds thereof without regard to possession thereof by the party entitled to such lien without further perfection.
(c) If the livestock or its carcass or products therefrom are so commingled with other livestock, carcasses, or products so that the identity thereof is lost, then the lien granted in this subsection shall extend to the same effect as if same had been perfected originally in all such animals, carcasses, and products with which it has become commingled. However, all liens so extended under this paragraph to such commingled livestock, carcasses, and products shall be on a parity with one another, and, with respect to such commingled carcasses or products upon which a lien or liens have been so extended under this paragraph, no such lien shall be enforceable as against any purchaser without actual knowledge thereof purchasing one or more of such carcasses or products in the ordinary course of trade or business from the party having commingled such carcasses or products or against any subsequent transferee from such purchaser, but in the event of such sale, such lien shall instead extend to the proceeds of such sale.
History.s. 1, ch. 76-62; s. 4, ch. 86-70; s. 739, ch. 97-103.