Who owns what on a mining claim?

Bonaro

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A friend of mine bought a group of claims in Idaho last year. I was talking to him tonight and I learned there are two cabins on one of his claims. He said they are controlled by the Forest Service. One of the cabins has been refurbished and is being rented out by the FS. He said there is nothing in his claim paperwork that indicates the FS has ownership of the cabins.

Now, in my thinking these cabins belong to my friend since he is the valid claim owner. If the FS is keeping the cabins then there needs to be some sort of contract or easement or some legal doc to show that. If not then I think the FS owes my friend a lot of rent money.

How does this work? :icon_scratch:
 
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DizzyDigger

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I'm no Clay Diggins, but I'll take a WAG at it.

Your friend has a claim for the surface minerals on that parcel of land.
This gives him rights to (within the confines of the law) mine the property
for gold, silver, lead...whatever.

The mineral claim gives him no property rights beyond those described in the
claim itself. The forest service has cabins in a number of states, and yes, you
can rent one for a day, week or whatever.

Have him post an unavoidable claim marker within a few feet of the cabins,
and then he should be hospitable when there are guests in the cabins.

or..better yet, maybe he could rent the cabin from the FS for the summer?
 

Goodyguy

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Simple answer......

Unless your friend has a patented claim he only has rights to the minerals.
If he holds a patented claim he owns the land and everything on or in it.

Of course there could be assigned rights to others such as for logging, grazing, right of way, etc.

GG~
 
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crusty

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Let me guess... He bought them on eBay.

He owns the mineral rights and first right to use the timber for his operation, nothing more. Can't even charge the tourists staying in there cabin to watch him dig.

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Goldwasher

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yep those are Our cabins. He can set up a tent and hang out with the people renting the cabin. They can not interefere with him. Sounds like a good way to get the F.S all
protologistic about your buddy.

I smell a G.R.E claim. Part of the reason he feels like those are his cabins is that the seller used their presence to create perceived value.
 
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Goldfleks

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Why are people so eager to buy claims they don't know everything about? A fool and his money...

Did he even visit these before cutting a check?
 

bug

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The only one receiving any rent money, will be USFS! If your freind wants to use those cabins.
 
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Bonaro

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Why are people so eager to buy claims they don't know everything about? A fool and his money...

Did he even visit these before cutting a check?

Ok, so to end some presumptions. My friend did not buy these on ebay and he didn't do it without seeing them. He is also no fool and has many years of mining behind him. He bought from a family estate whom he knows. He actually doesn't care much about the cabins. When I learned about them I thought he may have some ownership because there were legacy mining structures and the FS more recently refurbed one of them. The other cabin needs work but is savable. Since the FS is not doing anything with this other cabin, can my friend use it?
 

Goldwasher

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Details first prevent assumption. Just sayin. All the comments on not knowing were based on the fact that it was mentioned that he didn't know. It wasn't mentioned that he had years of experience and still didn't know.
The majority of the time this situation arises when someone blindly buys a claim. Especially a G.R.E. claim!
That is obviously what it sounded like hence the commonality of the replies. You got correct answers based on all the info you gave.
I would figure a family that had owned a bunch of claims in Idaho with buildings on them would be the point source for the best info.
But, then again they don't care about them enough to keep them.
Either way with questions like that from an experienced prospector, He didn't need Ebay to pay too much for some claims did he?
Win win for the family they got money and don't have to deal with the liability of cabins on their claims that actually have users being directed right to them..ICKY!!
Hope he didn't pay more than the maintenance fees for a year.

He can sleep in it he. Can't work on it if it isn't in a POO. He should know that already.
 
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Hoser John

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That fella sure has a complicated situation. Anyone can quote all the gobble de gook legalese in the world but still just a simple question...How deep are his pockets and what does the local FS supervisor say ? He has them to deal with them till the live long day and the way this is approached is VERY important. It is much easier to gently probe than march in with demands and then WAR forever till your broke. They let me get away with murder for dozens of years as a cordial relationship-screw the rules, their words-gets you much farther down that righteous golden road. Amazing situation-thanx much for post. John
 

crusty

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Agree with John; relationships are the key here. Applies to all claim situations, but more so if the FS has a revenue generating enterprise on the claim. If they get it in their heads that his mining will impact their revenue stream, they could make his life hell. Best to tread lightly, introduce himself to whoever runs the joint and get started on the right foot. With any luck, they're reasonable folks and it will all work out.

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Goldwasher

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Agree with John; relationships are the key here. Applies to all claim situations, but more so if the FS has a revenue generating enterprise on the claim. If they get it in their heads that his mining will impact their revenue stream, they could make his life hell. Best to tread lightly, introduce himself to whoever runs the joint and get started on the right foot. With any luck, they're reasonable folks and it will all work out.

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Theres a reason I used the term Proctological........UP YOUR BUTT!!

Theres a F.S rental there. I would say the F.S. can show his activities having more of a surface disturbance.

Consider it has been mostly campers enjoying the "Historical Mining Site" A new miner comes in does anything resembling mining on the surface
generates a complaint and?

The first thing is that the guy should have thought about all of this. He should follow all laws and do what he deems he is allowed. If he knew that the F.S. had a cabin that is part of the reservation system. He should just flat out be PARANOID that it was going to affect his claim.

How much time will he spend there? Has he mined the area? What is the general attitude in the area?

Honestly like DUH. I would love to have some claims in Idaho with buildings on them DUH and good for Bonaros buddy.

John is right he should have contacted the D.R. as well. Still needs to.

Any old buildings on an unpatented claim will complicate things depending. One that Uncle Sam is putting mints under pillows in....NO THANKS
 
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Goldfleks

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Maybe he can work with the FS and teach gold prospecting to the campers.
 

Clay Diggins

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Reminds me of a situation here in Arizona where there is good gold ground with an 1880's cemetery on it. The newbies keep buying it up sight unseen and then make big plans to mine their new "claim". :laughing7:

Miners and adults do their due diligence before assuming their money will get them some property rights. Would you buy a house without checking for termites/rats/flooding/squatters? Prior surface use rights can really put a kink in your imaginary mining plans. When those prior uses include graves, a rental cabin or a timber sale the so called "miner" ends up with egg on their face.

Heavy Pans
 

pcampbell

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No he can not use the cabin without permission. No he does not own anything on the land. He owns the mineral rights. Just as an example you can own the mineral rights and someone else can own the land, and you will have ZERO access to dig on that land. A mining claim will not mean very much in his fight for usage of the land if there is FS property nearby.
 

russau

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Maybe he can work with the FS and teach gold prospecting to the campers.

Theres NO WORKING WITH LIERS! A general statement is that a majority of the f.s. are a bunch of green wackoos that ole babbling bruce babbit hired back in the slick willy days and they don't want us there OR ANY ONE ELSE EXCEPT THE GREENIES!
 

Goodyguy

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Time will tell how well he can get along with the FS. As has been stated the FS is not inclined to pay any favor to a gold claim owner or even recognize his rights.
It would be nice if he could build a working relationship with the FS before doing any surface disturbance no matter how insignificant.

Knowing what is expected by the FS up front can go a long way toward making life easier. However most FS employees have demonstrated a total disdain for prospector /miners and can not be counted upon for any support.

Claim markers need to always be kept up to date and comply with currant standards of placement and materials.
Failure to do so may result in having his mining equipment ,supplies, tent, camping gear, etc. to be confiscated if found unattended. To reclaim his gear will require re-payment of FS expenses incurred in the removal and storage of all confiscated materials including trash clean up.

Also it may help him to have copies of the laws/rules with him at all times to keep from being harassed and bullied by a ranger who may try to intimidate him.
Politely demonstrating that you know and are in compliance with the laws and regulations can go a long way toward you being tolerated.

GG~
 
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