We are very much interested and will wait. Thank you for the heads-up. Fred
Thank you for corresponding. We are most interested in your feedback and will hope for an expert. It is a most important issue due to the billions($) that are being invested in American. Indian tribal lands where they view their sovereign nation status quite seriously.
Thank you again
Hello Fred -
This is a pretty obscure subject area in the law and the practice of tribal law and Indian Reservation Law is very specialized in those areas of the US where there are tribal lands and reservations. As a starting point, all land that is part of an Indian Reservation was originally all Trust Land -- it was held in trust by the Indians, but actually owned by the US federal government. This has been the law for more than 200 years. As Indians moved and progress happened there have been instances of sale to non-Indians - but the Tribe and the purchase had to be approved by the federal government. So, in this day and age there are many areas within Indian Reservations that are trust land AND land owned in fee simple by individual Indians and merchants. There is no way that any of us here at Just Answer could tell you if you will be taking that land in fee simple without reviewing all of the documents and knowing what is happening -- however, as a starting point if you are considering purchasing what is now Indian tribal land then you need to determine if that land was sold previously to a non-indian owner and did that land sale receive approval from the US government at that time (the US Dept of the Interior gives the approval). If there is no record of a prior sale of the land out of the Indian reservation or the tribal lands, then the land could still be part of the original "trust" land set up by the US government. That is not to say the property cannot be purchased by a non-Indian -- but it means that the seller and the transaction must get that approval from the US Dept of the Interior. So, there should be a title search and a point in that title where one of the prior owners received permission from the US to sell the land (which at that point makes it non tribal and you do not need another approval to sell it again down the line) and if there is not that approval then you will need that approval for the sale to you. Here is a pretty good discussion of these issues -- it starts with a tribe trying to buy non tribal lands but actually discusses the history of Indian Land Transactions. http://www.dorsey.com/files/upload/AILJ_TrialIssue_Jarboe.pdf
I hope that helps. I do highly recommend that you hire a local attorney where the land is located who specializes in these Indian tribal land issues because you want to make sure that all of your "ducks" are in a row so to speak when purchasing this land.
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