Mining and Public Lands
We offer a broad range of expertise: from the beginning stages of title examination, title opinions, title curative actions, entity formation, acquisition, leasing, exploration, and permitting, to advanced needs such as site development, financing, feasibility studies, management of the operation, and reclamation. We also offer specialized experience in all aspects of securing and solving conflicts associated with surface and subsurface rights and permitting activities, and the defense of enforcement actions by local, state, and federal agencies.
Our specific experience includes complex public land and environmental law matters, including coordination with federal, state, and local regulatory agencies. We also combine a unique set of experience and knowledge in the development of mineral and non-mineral properties on Indian Lands, which includes the navigation of private, tribal and federal law issues. Consistent with our goal to provide excellent client service, the firm employs a Registered Landman who is available to assist with title and public records research to determine the status and ownership of surface, mineral, and other associated rights for mineral and energy projects.
Our mining lawyers have broad experience advising clients on virtually every aspect of metallic and non-metallic mining projects, from exploration to operation. We assist, counsel and provide our clients with practical solutions to achieve results in all stages of project development. Our specialized experience includes the following:
- Title examination of fee and mineral rights and associated property rights, curative title work, location, perfection and maintenance of unpatented mining claims, due diligence, acquisitions and sales of mineral interests, water rights and associated property rights, exploration and permitting, development of legal descriptions for surface and mineral property, site development, feasibility studies, entity formation, authorization and maintenance, financing, feasibility studies, as well as management of the operation and reclamation.
- Assistance with ancillary legal matters including, corporate formation and governance, employment, construction, tax, litigation and other forms of dispute resolution.
- The development of mineral and non-mineral properties on Indian Lands which includes the navigation of private, tribal and federal law issues.
- Domestic and foreign companies in evaluating potential mine developments, in mergers and acquisitions, as well as with credit facilities and finance related to mining projects and mineral interests in U.S.
- Applying for and negotiating land or mineral interest purchases, leases, permits and rights of way on state and federal lands, including but not limited to, coordination with administrative agencies such as the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Indian Tribes and various local and state agencies.
- Specialized skill in a wide range of water rights and complex environmental law issues specific to mining projects, which include all aspects of air quality, land, water and waste permits as well as closure and long-term monitoring of mines post-reclamation. We have substantial experience defending enforcement actions brought by local, state and federal environmental regulatory agencies.
- Contractual necessities and common disputes associated with mining projects such as joint ventures, mineral royalties, mining claim conflicts, access rights, MSHA and OSHA accident investigations; and administrative cases before the Interior Board of Land Appeals and Interior Board of Indian Appeals.