Please reach us at ArizonaMiningClaims@yahoo.com if you cannot find an answer to your question. None of this is legal advice. Always seek professionals and legal counsel. Laws, regulations, and interpretations can change and may not be current or consistent with these FAQ's.
Simply put, a mining claim is a legal term that refers to a piece of land where a person or a company has the right to explore and extract valuable minerals. There are different types of mining claims, depending on the kind of minerals, the location of the land, and the way the claim is established.
Placer which refers to mineral values in gravel.
Lode which refers to mineral values contained in a vein within the earth.
Tunnel which refers to a tunnel driven with expectation to intersect a vein or veins with valuable mineral.
Millsite refers to a location void of valuable minerals where a processing plant can be located.
The division of land rights can be quite complicated. The term Patented or Unpatented refers to whether the federal government has transferred partial or complete ownership to someone. Generally speaking, most mining claims you will encounter are unpatented which means the surface rights are owned by the United States of America and the mineral rights are owned by a person or entity. Federal lands, are generally administered by BLM, but can be mixed with State Land, Forest Service, and even stockraising & homestead land(private surface).
For consistency, I ONLY work with BLM Surface rights and BLM mineral rights.
Why? Forest Service and State Land can become complex and drawn out in developing a mine. Stockraising & Homestead can go fine if you stay on good terms with the (surface)landowner or jump through the hoops for permitting and bonding.
In a nutshell, you will own the rights to extract the minerals in the described boundaries of that claim. It allows for certain use of the surface and its reclamation.
The BLM allows for occupancy of your mining claim for a limited time(14 days), but as you develop your mine site and apply for a Notice of Intent, you may find it necessary to apply for an Occupancy Permit concurrently with your Notice of Intent or Plan of Operation. This short paragraph can't cover all of the limitations for camping or occupancy, so speak with your BLM field office to clarify your questions.
After applying for a Notice of Intent, posting a bond, and receiving approval, yes you can. It is not complicated and drafting the NOI, calculating the bond, etc, only takes a few hours. Your local BLM field office can be very helpful in giving you guidance to make the process faster. Once in place, you're free to exercise all of the activities you have described in the NOI. If you intend to deviate from it, you must contact them to consider the changes before you proceed with those activities.
Quit claim deed is the most common way they are transferred. If you decide to sell, trade, or will it to someone else, you will also quit claim deed it to them.
No, that's not how it works. As you become more involved in developing your mine, you'll realize BLM allows for occupancy if you are legitimately mining your claim if occupancy fits the necessary criterial. Temporary housing is generally acceptable in the form of portable housing like campers.
Transporting water is a good option until you are ready to drill a well. It's pretty easy to incorporate a well into you Notice of Intent and bond.
Yes, there are quite a few, but your Local BLM field office can help you decide which agencies may require notice and it may change from time to time based on the political party in Washington.
The easiest way is to pay your maintenance fees online through the BLM payportal before September 1st of each year. (currently it is $165/yr for each 20 acre claim or as classified by the BLM). Yes, you can do a Small Miners Waiver, but we tend to see people forget to record or file the right documents at the right time and lose their claim.