Dog Civil Forfeitures

It’s time to start your dog civil forfeiture process for all owners who have failed to renew/license their dog(s) for last year. The RSAs are very specific in regard to when you need to complete the civil forfeiture steps.

Below is a timeline to assist you for when things need to be done, as well as links to instructions on how to create the civil forfeiture letters and assign the fees to the dogs.

  • June 1st to June 20th: Create your unlicensed dog warrant and list for all dogs that have not been renewed and/or have never been licensed. (Utilities | Unlicensed Dog Warrant) You should give the warrant and list to your governing body (selectmen/alderman/councilors) for their signatures to authorize the issuance of the civil forfeiture letters and the corresponding fees. (RSA 466:14 Warrants; Proceedings)
  • June 21st to July 11th: Your governing body will issue the warrant to “a local official authorized to issue a civil forfeiture for each unlicensed dog.” This could be your local police department, dog officer, or even you, if you send the letters by certified mail. (Utilities | Dog Civil Forfeitures). Note, if you use Invoice Cloud to process online dog payments, you need to upload the civil forfeiture notices to your biller portal.
  • By August 31st: Your local law enforcement officer, or whomever you named on the unlicensed warrant, must return a list showing the owners who paid (and licensed their dogs), the dogs that were seized, and the owners who have not licensed their dogs and may need to receive a summons to your district court. (RSA 466:16 Returns)


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