Occupancy Regulations

The BLM Regulations 43 CFR 3715 addresses the placement and use of all structures and enclosures on BLM-managed lands during the exploration and development of mineral resources. All buildings, equipment, fences, signs, roads, or any man-made changes on the mining claim, must be reasonably incident to mineral development and included in a notice or plan on file with the Bureau of Land Management.

Authorizations, issued for structures and enclosures under these regulations, may vary depending on numerous factors such as: location of the activity proposed in relation to population centers, the type of activity, proposed duration of the activity, and at what point in the development life cycle of the mine the proposed occupancy may be. Once authorized, a structure or enclosure will be reviewed annually by the BLM to determine if it is still reasonably incident to the development of mineral resources.

Proposed or existing buildings, enclosures, or stored equipment that are found NOT reasonably incident in the support of mineral development will not be authorized and must be removed from federal lands. Reclamation plans should include the removal of all buildings and related facilities and site rehabilitation when no longer required for the authorized purpose. Structures placed on federal lands under these regulations must meet all applicable local and state building codes. Any temporary structure, even a travel trailer, needs a permit from the BLM to be located on Public Lands beyond the 14-day camping limit.

In response to these regulations 43 CFR 3715, "Existing Occupancy Notification" forms and letters were mailed to claimants and operators in August of each year. Claimants or operators who did not respond by October 15th of each year, and have an occupancy on their claims are subject to immediate review for potential unauthorized occupancy on a mining claim and can be subject to civil or criminal actions.

For more information contact slundeen@blm.gov