Ownership, Environmental Due Diligence, Loss Reporting


Each year new plants and animals are added to the endangered species list. Importation and exportation of instruments using these products are illegal and can result in seizure, fines, and penalties, unless you fall into an exemption. Your instrument could, for example, be grandfathered in by law if it has been produced before certain dates, or before the materials were declared endangered. The problem is that while there are only a handful of woods and other plant and animal products that are endangered NOW, each year there are more items put on the list, and eventually, many, if not all, the materials used in building fine instruments will be on the list. Proving your instrument falls into one of those exemptions is difficult. Who keeps records of purchase, ownership, or production for ten years? When your instrument crosses a boarder, you are guilty until proven innocent—in other words, the burden of proof is on you to prove that you a)own the instrument and did not just buy it in the country you are traveling in, b) own the instrument by a certain date and have had that instrument manufactured by that date, c) you have looked at the laws and used due diligence—examined the relevant available evidence to the best of your ability. Filling out papers in the U.S. will not protect you in traveling to Europe and will not even protect you coming back. Likewise, filling out papers will not protect you coming into the U.S. and many countries have their own complicated forms—most of which are geared toward commercial shipments of raw materials—not individual, fully built instruments.

This registry provides evidence of due diligence on your part, a uniformly important part of every international law and treaty regarding the ownership of potentially endangered species, and incorporated into the national laws that implement these international treaties.

And remember, you not only have to prove what your instrument is, but also what it is not. When you register your guitar, you will be able to use your smart phone to show that you have done due diligence in making sure your instrument is in compliance. It is only one important part of the evidentiary process, and may not be accepted by a government as complete evidence, but neither are the current governmental forms available, and it is designed to at least give you a chance at proving the ownership and compliance of your instrument, anywhere where there is cell service, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It may well make the difference in proving your ownership and intentions for purposes of declarations and customs duties and tariffs, and it will definitely help you link to a world-wide social media for help as well as provide a powerful starting point in identifying, and retrieving your instrument if a question arises. It will certainly PROVE your ownership of an instrument before the hundreds of woods which will, in the future, be added to the list, and it will also PROVE what your guitar is NOT. Moreover, as the laws progress, the legal staff at will continue to work with important legislators and foreign governments to strengthen the impact of your registration on this site. The sooner you register, the more endangered species you will automatically be grandfathered in with.

There are no comprehensive laws or forms that protect your ownership, but your registration is powerful proof of a key element, and your ability to use our one touch loss notification through extensive social media is well worth the price, which is transferable and can be compared to upgrading the case on your guitar. It is added protection and value when you go to sell your instrument.