Statute of Museums

Statute of Museums

LAW No. 11.904, OF JANUARY 14, 2009 – Institutes the Statute of Museums and provides other measures.


THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC I inform you that the National Congress decrees and I sanction the following Law:




General Provisions


Art. 1 For the purposes of this Law, museums are considered non-profit institutions that conserve, investigate, communicate, interpret and exhibit, for the purposes of preservation, study, research, education, contemplation and tourism, collections and collections of value historical, artistic, scientific, technical or any other cultural nature, open to the public, at the service of society and its development.


Single paragraph. This Law will include institutions and museological processes aimed at working with cultural heritage and the territory with a view to cultural and socioeconomic development and community participation.


Art. 2 The fundamental principles of museums are:


I – the enhancement of human dignity;


II – the promotion of citizenship;


III – the fulfillment of the social function;


IV – valuing and preserving cultural and environmental heritage;


V – universality of access, respect and appreciation for cultural diversity;


VI – institutional exchange.


Single paragraph. The application of this article is linked to the basic principles of the National Culture Plan and the regime for the protection and enhancement of cultural heritage.


Art. 3 Depending on the characteristics and development of each museum, there may be branches, sections and nuclei or annexes of the institutions.


Single paragraph. For the purposes of applying this Law, the following are defined:


I – as a branch, museums that are dependent on others for their direction and management, including financial, but which have an autonomous museum plan;


II – as a section, the differentiated part of a museum that, for the purpose of executing its museological plan, occupies a property independent of the main headquarters;


III – as a nucleus or annex, mobile or immovable spaces that, due to specific museological guidelines, are part of a museum project.


Art. 4 The public power will establish mechanisms to promote and encourage the sustainability of Brazilian museums.


Art. 5 The cultural assets of museums, in their various manifestations, can be declared as of public interest, in whole or in part.


Paragraph 1. Movable and immovable property of public interest, of material or immaterial nature, taken individually or together, bearing reference to the natural environment, identity, culture and memory of the different training groups are considered as cultural assets subject to musealization of Brazilian society.


Paragraph 2. The collection of museums whose protection and valorization, research and access to society represents a cultural value of outstanding importance for the Nation, respecting the cultural, regional, ethnic and linguistic diversity of the Country, will be declared as of public interest.


  • 3 (VETOED)


Art. 6 This Law does not apply to libraries, archives, documentation centers and visitable collections.


Single paragraph. Visible collections are considered to be collections of cultural goods preserved by an individual or legal entity, which do not have the characteristics provided for in art. 1 of this Law, and which are open to visitation, albeit sporadically.




From the regime applicable to museums


Art. 7 The creation of museums by any entity is free, regardless of the legal regime, under the terms established in this Law.


Art. 8 The creation, merger and extinction of museums will be carried out by means of a public document.


  • 1 The preparation of museological plans, programs and projects, aiming at the creation, merger or maintenance of museums, must be in accordance with Law No. 7,287, of December 18, 1984.


Paragraph 2. The creation, merger or extinction of museums must be registered with the competent government agency.


Art. 9 Museums can encourage the formation of associations of friends of museums, specialized interest groups, volunteering or other forms of collaboration and systematic participation by the community and the public.


  • 1 Museums, according to their possibilities, will provide spaces for the installation of associative or voluntary structures that aim to contribute to the performance of the functions and purposes of museums.


Paragraph 2. Museums may create a service for the reception, training and management of volunteering, endowing themselves with a specific regulation, ensuring and establishing the mutual benefit of the institution and the volunteers.


Art. 10. (VETOED)


Art. 11. The designation of state, regional or district museum can only be used by a museum linked to the Federation Unit or by museums to which the State authorizes the use of this designation.


Art. 12. The denomination of municipal museum can only be used by a museum linked to the Municipality or by museums to which the Municipality authorizes the use of this denomination.


Section I


Public Museums


Art. 13. Public institutions are considered museological institutions linked to the public power, located in the national territory.


Art. 14. The public power will sign a prior annual plan, in order to guarantee the functioning of public museums and allow the fulfillment of their purposes.


Art. 15. Public museums will be governed by a specific normative act.


Single paragraph. Without prejudice to the provisions of this article, the public museum may establish agreements for its management.


Art. 16. The direct or indirect participation of technical personnel from public museums in activities related to the commercialization of cultural goods is prohibited.


Single paragraph. Evaluation activities for commercial purposes will be allowed to employees in service in museums, in cases of internal use, of scientific interest, or at the request of a government agency, through appropriate administrative procedure.


Art. 17. Museums will keep properly qualified employees, in compliance with current legislation.


Single paragraph. The managing body of the public museum will ensure the availability of qualified and sufficient staff to fulfill its purposes.


Section II


The Regiment and Basic Areas of Museums


Art. 18. Public and private entities on which museums depend must clearly define their organic framework and approve the respective regulations.


Art. 19. Every museum must have adequate facilities to fulfill the necessary functions, as well as the well-being of users and employees.


Art. 20. The management of the museums is responsible for ensuring its proper functioning, the fulfillment of the museological plan through specialized functions, as well as planning and coordinating the execution of the annual activity plan.


Subsection I


Preservation, Conservation, Restoration and Security


Art. 21. Museums will guarantee the conservation and security of their collections.


Single paragraph. The preservation, conservation and restoration programs, rules and procedures will be developed by each museum in accordance with current legislation.


Art. 22. The regime of joint and several liability will be applied to actions of preservation, conservation or restoration that involve irreparable damage or destruction of cultural assets of museums, with negligence being punishable.


Art. 23. Museums must have the necessary security conditions to guarantee the protection and integrity of cultural assets under their custody, as well as for users, their employees and the facilities.


Single paragraph. Each museum must have a Safety Program periodically tested to prevent and neutralize hazards.


Art. 24. Museums are allowed to establish restrictions on the entry of objects and, exceptionally, people, as long as they are duly justified.


Art. 25. Public security entities may cooperate with museums, through the joint definition of the Security Program and the approval of prevention and neutralization equipment for hazards.


Art. 26. Museums will collaborate with public security entities in combating crimes against property and trafficking in cultural goods.


Art. 27. The Program and the security rules of each museum are confidential in nature.


Single paragraph. (VETOED)


Subsection II


Study, Research and Educational Action


Art. 28. Study and research underpin the actions developed in all areas of museums, in compliance with their multiple competencies.


  • 1 The study and research will guide the policy of acquisitions and disposals, the identification and characterization of cultural assets incorporated or incorporable and activities for the purposes of documentation, conservation, interpretation and exhibition and education.


  • 2 Museums must promote public studies, diagnosis of participation and periodic assessments aiming at the progressive improvement of the quality of their functioning and meeting the needs of visitors.


Art. 29. Museums should promote educational activities, based on respect for cultural diversity and community participation, contributing to expand society’s access to cultural manifestations and the nation’s material and immaterial heritage.


Art. 30. Museums should provide professional practice opportunities to educational establishments that offer courses in museology and the like, in disciplinary fields related to museum functions and their vocation.


Subsection III


Cultural Diffusion and Access to Museums


Art. 31. Communication actions are ways of making known the cultural assets incorporated or deposited in the museum, in order to provide public access.


Single paragraph. The museum will regulate public access to cultural goods, taking into account conservation and safety conditions.


Art. 32. Museums should develop and implement exhibition programs appropriate to their vocation and typology, in order to promote access to cultural goods and encourage reflection and recognition of their symbolic value.


Art. 33. Museums can authorize or produce publications on themes related to their cultural assets and advertising pieces about their collection and activities.


  • 1 The quality, fidelity and scientific and educational purposes of the material produced will be guaranteed, without prejudice to copyright and related rights.


  • 2 All replicas and other copies will be marked as such, in order to avoid being confused with the original objects or specimens.


Art. 34. The policy of free or expensive admission to the museum will be established by him or by the entity on which he depends, for different audiences, according to provisions provided for by the national legislative system.


Art. 35. Museums will be characterized by the universal accessibility of different audiences, in accordance with current legislation.


Art. 36. Museum visitor statistics will be sent to the competent government agency or entity, in the form determined by the respective entity, when requested.


Art. 37. Museums should provide a book of suggestions and complaints visibly placed in the visitors’ reception area.


Subsection IV


Museum Collections


Art. 38. Museums should formulate, approve or, when appropriate, propose, for the approval of the entity on which they depend, a policy for the acquisition and disposal of cultural goods, updated periodically.


Single paragraph. The museums linked to the public power will publicize the terms of discards to be made by the institution, through publication in the respective Official Gazette.


Art. 39. It is the obligation of museums to keep systematically updated documentation on the cultural assets that make up their collections, in the form of records and inventories.


  • 1 The registration and inventory of cultural goods in museums must be structured in such a way as to ensure compatibility with the national inventory of cultural goods.


  • 2 The inventoried or registered goods enjoy protection in order to prevent their perishing or degradation, to promote their preservation and security and to disclose their existence.


Art. 40. Museum inventories and other records that identify cultural assets, prepared by public and private museums, are considered archival heritage of national interest and must be kept in the respective museum facilities, in order to avoid destruction, loss or deterioration.


Single paragraph. In the event of the extinction of museums, their inventories and records will be kept by the successor body or entity.


Art. 41. The protection of the cultural assets of museums is completed by the national inventory, without prejudice to other competing forms of protection.


  • 1 The national inventory is understood to include systematic and periodically updated data on the cultural assets existing in each museum, aiming at their identification and protection.


  • 2 The national inventory of museum assets will not have implications for property, possession or other real rights.


  • 3 The national inventory of cultural goods in museums will be coordinated by the Union.


  • 4 For the purpose of the integrity of the national inventory, museums will be responsible for inserting data about their cultural assets.


Subsection V


Use of Images and Reproductions of Cultural Property in Museums


Art. 42. Museums will facilitate access to the image and the reproduction of their cultural goods and documents in accordance with the procedures established in current legislation and in the internal regulations of each museum.


Single paragraph. The availability referred to in this article will be based on the principles of conservation of cultural assets, public interest, non-interference in the activity of museums and the guarantee of intellectual property rights, including image, in accordance with current legislation.


Art. 43. Museums will guarantee the protection of the cultural assets that constitute their collections, both in relation to the quality of images and reproductions and to the fidelity to the educational and dissemination meanings that are their own, in the form of current legislation.


Section III


From the Museological Plan


Art. 44. It is the duty of museums to prepare and implement the Museological Plan.


Art. 45. The Museological Plan is understood as a basic tool of strategic planning, with a global and integrating meaning, indispensable for the identification of the vocation of the museological institution for the definition, organization and prioritization of the objectives and actions of each of its operating areas, as well as founding the creation or merging of museums, constituting a fundamental instrument for the systematization of internal work and for the performance of museums in society.


Art. 46. The Museum’s Museum Plan will define its basic mission and its specific function in society and may include the following items, among others:


I – the participatory diagnosis of the institution, which can be carried out with the help of external collaborators;


II – the identification of the spaces, as well as the patrimonial sets under the custody of the museums;


III – the identification of the public for whom the work of museums is intended;


IV – details of the Programs:


  1. a) Institutional;


  1. b) People Management;


  1. c) Collections;


  1. d) Exhibitions;


  1. e) Educational and Cultural;


  1. f) Research;


  1. g) Architectural-urbanistic;


  1. h) Security;


  1. i) Financing and Promotion;


  1. j) Communication.


  • 1 In the consolidation of the Museological Plan, the interdisciplinary nature of the Programs must be taken into account.


Paragraph 2. The Museological Plan will be prepared, preferably, in a participatory manner, involving all the employees of the museums, in addition to specialists, social partners, users and external consultants, taking into account their specificities.


  • 3 The Museological Plan must be permanently evaluated and revised by the institution at intervals defined in its regulations.


Art. 47. The component projects of the Museological Plan Programs will be characterized by their feasibility, adequacy to the specifications of the different Programs, presentation of the execution schedule, the explanation of the adopted methodology, the description of the planned actions and the implementation of a system permanent evaluation.




Society and Museums


Section I


General Provisions


Art. 48. In line with the purpose of service to society established in this Law, collaboration mechanisms with other entities may be promoted.


Art. 49. The activities resulting from the mechanisms provided for in art. 48 of this Law will be authorized and supervised by the museum management, who may suspend them if their development conflicts with the normal operation of the museum.


Art. 50. Associations of friends of museums will be understood as civil societies, non-profit, constituted in the form of civil law, which meet, at least, the following requirements:


I – include in its creative instrument, as an exclusive purpose, the support, maintenance and incentive to the activities of the museums to which they refer, especially those destined to the general public;


II – not to restrict the adhesion of new members, whether individuals or legal entities;


III – the executive board’s remuneration be prohibited.


Single paragraph. The recognition of the association of friends of the museums will be carried out in a registration form prepared by the sponsoring agency or competent entity.


Art. 51. (VETOED)


Art. 52. Associations of friends must make their balance sheets public periodically.


Single paragraph. Associations of museum friends must allow any checks determined by the competent control bodies, providing the clarifications requested, in addition to being obliged to send copies of balance sheets and reports for the fiscal year to them annually.


Art. 53. The associations of friends, in the exercise of their functions, will submit to the prior and express approval of the institution to which they are linked, of the plans, projects and actions.


Art. 54. Associations may reserve up to ten percent of the total resources received and generated by them for their own administration and maintenance, the rest being reverted to the museological institution.


Section II


Museum Systems


Art. 55. The Museum System is an organized network of museological institutions, based on voluntary membership, configured progressively and aimed at coordination, articulation, mediation, qualification and cooperation between museums.


Art. 56. The federated entities shall establish in law, called the State, Regional, Municipal or District Statute of Museums, specific rules of organization, articulation and attributions of museological institutions in museum systems, in accordance with the principles set forth in this Statute.


  • 1 The installation of state or regional, district and municipal museum systems will be carried out gradually, always aiming at the qualification of the respective museums.


  • 2 The purpose of museum systems is to:


I – technically support museums in the disciplinary and thematic or geographical area related to them;


II – promote cooperation and articulation between museums in the disciplinary and thematic or geographic areas related to them, especially with municipal museums;


III – contribute to the vitality and cultural dynamism of the places where museums are installed;


IV – to prepare opinions and reports on issues related to museology in the context of performance assigned to them;


V – collaborate with the competent government agency or entity with regard to the appreciation of applications to the Brazilian Museum System, in the promotion of programs and activities and in the monitoring of the respective execution.


Art. 57. The Brazilian Museum System will have a Steering Committee, with the purpose of proposing guidelines and actions, as well as supporting and monitoring the development of the Brazilian museum sector.


Single paragraph. The Management Committee of the Brazilian Museum System will be composed of representatives of bodies and entities with representation in the area of ​​national museology.


Art. 58. The purpose of the Brazilian Museum System is to promote:


I – the interaction between museums, related institutions and professionals linked to the sector, aiming at the constant improvement of the use of material and cultural resources;


II – the valuation, registration and dissemination of specific knowledge in the museological field;


III – integrated management and development of institutions, collections and museological processes;


IV – the development of actions aimed at the areas of asset acquisition, training of human resources, documentation, research, conservation, restoration, communication and dissemination among public bodies and entities, private entities and museum units that make up the System;


V – promoting the quality of museums’ performance through the implementation of evaluation procedures.


Art. 59. Specific objectives of the Brazilian Museum System are:


I – promote articulation between museological institutions, respecting their legal-administrative, cultural and technical-scientific autonomy;


II – stimulate the development of programs, projects and museological activities that respect and value the cultural heritage of popular and traditional communities, according to their specificities;


III – disseminate technical and scientific standards and procedures that guide the activities developed in museological institutions;


IV – stimulate and support programs and projects to increase and professional qualification of teams working in museological institutions;


V – stimulate the participation and interest of the various segments of society in the museum sector;


VI – stimulate the development of educational and cultural programs, projects and activities in museological institutions;


VII – encourage and promote the creation and articulation of state, municipal and international museum networks and systems, as well as their exchange and integration with the Brazilian Museum System;


VIII – contribute to the implementation, maintenance and updating of a National Museum Register;


IX – propose the creation and improvement of legal instruments for the best performance and development of museological institutions in the country;


X – propose measures for the security and protection policy of collections, installations and buildings;


XI – encourage the training, updating and appreciation of professionals from museological institutions; and


XII – encourage practices aimed at exchange, acquisition, documentation, research, preservation, conservation, restoration and dissemination of museum collections.


Art. 60. May be part of the Brazilian Museum System, through the formalization of a skillful instrument to be signed with the competent body, public and private museums, educational institutions related to the area of ​​museology and related entities, in the form of specific legislation .


Art. 61. The museums that are part of the Brazilian Museum System will have priority, regarding the benefit of policies specifically developed.


Single paragraph. Accession museums can benefit from specific qualification policies.


Art. 62. The museums that are part of the Brazilian Museum System collaborate with each other and articulate their respective resources with a view to improving and enhancing the provision of services to the public.


Single paragraph. The aforementioned collaboration is reflected in the establishment of contracts, agreements, conventions and cooperation protocols between museums or with public or private entities.


Art. 63. Museums integrated into the Brazilian Museum System enjoy the right of first refusal in the event of judicial sale or auction of cultural goods, in compliance with the legislation in force.


  • 1 The period for exercising the preemptive right is fifteen days, and, in the event of competition between the museums of the System, it is up to the Management Committee to determine which museum will be given priority.


Paragraph 2. The preference can only be exercised if the cultural object object of the preference is included in the museum acquisition policy, under penalty of nullity of the act.






Art. 64. (VETOED)


Art. 65. (VETOED)


Art. 66. Without prejudice to the penalties defined by federal, state and municipal legislation, especially arts. 62, 63 and 64 of Law No. 9,605, of February 12, 1998, failure to comply with the measures necessary to preserve or correct the inconveniences and damages caused by the degradation, destruction and destruction of museum assets will subject the offenders:


I – the simple or daily fine, in the amounts corresponding, at least, to ten and, at most, to one thousand days-fine, aggravated in cases of recidivism, according to specific regulations, its collection by the Federal Government is prohibited if it has already been applied by State, Federal District, Territories or Municipalities;


II – the loss or restriction of tax incentives and benefits granted by the government, for a period of five years;


III – the loss or suspension of participation in lines of credit in official credit institutions, for a period of five years;


IV – the impediment to contract with the public power, for a period of five years;


V – partial suspension of its activity.


  • 1 Without hindering the application of the penalties provided for in this article, the offender is obliged to indemnify or repair the damages caused to the musealized goods and to injured third parties.


Paragraph 2. In the event of omission of the authority, the competent entity, at the federal level, shall be responsible for applying the pecuniary penalties provided for in this article.


Paragraph 3. In the cases provided for in items II and III of the caput of this article, the declaratory act of loss, restriction or suspension shall be the responsibility of the administrative or financial authority that granted the benefits, incentives or financing.


  • 4 Once the recidivism is verified, the fine penalty will be increased.




Final and Transitional Provisions


Art. 67. Museums will adapt their structures, resources and regulations to the provisions of this Law within five years, counted from its publication.


Single paragraph. Federal museums already in operation must adapt their activities to the provisions of this Law within two years.


Art. 68. Protecting national sovereignty, public order and good morals, the Brazilian government will provide, with regard to combating trafficking in cultural goods from museums, the necessary cooperation to another country, without any burden, when requested to:


I – production of evidence;


II – examination of objects and places;


III – information about people and things;


IV – temporary presence of a prisoner, whose statements are relevant to the decision of a case;


V – other forms of assistance permitted by the legislation in force by the treaties to which Brazil is a party.


Art. 69. In order to achieve the purposes envisaged in this Law and especially for the reciprocity of international cooperation, a communication system must be maintained that is capable of facilitating the fast and secure international exchange of information on cultural goods in museums.


Art. 70. This Law enters into force one hundred and twenty days after the date of its publication.


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