BLM Mining Law Administration

Notice to Claimants Regarding Maintenance Fee

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2012 (the FY 2012 Act), Pub. L. No. 112-74, 125 Stat. 786, enacted on December 23, 2011, amended the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993 (30 U.S.C 28f) which had established an initial and maintenance fee payment for all lode and placer mining claims and mill sites and tunnel sites on a per-claim basis.

In accordance with Sec. 430 of the FY 2012 Act, the maintenance fee payment for placer mining claims was adjusted so that the fee will now be calculated based on the total acreage in the claim. Claimants with placer mining claims will now pay $140 (current maintenance fee, as established by regulation) for every 20 acres or portion thereof contained in the claim. The maintenance fee for lode claims, mill sites and tunnel sites continues to be $140 per claim or site, and the FY 2012 Act does not affect the small miner’s waiver or the requirements to qualify for the waiver.

On July 27, 2012, a notice was published in the Federal Register implementing the statutory change. To view the Federal Register notice, select this link.

WHAT THIS MEANS TO YOU: If you hold an existing placer mining claim or record a new placer mining claim with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) on or after July 27, 2012, that contains more than 20 acres, you are affected by this change and will pay the annual and initial maintenance fee based on the total acreage in the claim as follows:

Acreage in the Claim
Maintenance Fee
 Payment Due
<= 20 acres
> 20 acres and <= 40 acres
> 40 acres and <= 60 acres
> 60 acres and <= 80 acres
> 80 acres and <= 100 acres
> 100 acres and <= 120 acres
> 120 acres and <= 140 acres
> 140 acres and <= 160 acres

                   Key: <= means "less than or equal to"; >  means "more than."

Any questions regarding the above should be directed to the Information Access Center in the BLM state office where your claim is recorded. A list of offices can be found at