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DOI says probate bill doesn't solve fractionation

A new probate reform bill recently signed into law doesn't solve the problem of fractionation, an Interior Department spokesperson said.

President Bush signed the American Indian Probate Reform Act late last month. Among other provisions, it gives landowners greater flexibility to pass on their property to lineal descendants.

Another component gives tribes the ability to acquire small fractionated interests from individual Indians. The Bureau of Indian Affairs ran a five-year pilot of this program but was unable to make a dent in the total number of fractionated parcels.

The bill also establishes a uniform probate code for Indian Country and encourages the estate planning and the development of wills.

Get the Story:
New law helps Indians pass on land (The Casper Star-Tribune 11/10)

Relevant Links:
Indian Land Tenure Foundation -
Indian Land Working Group -
Indian Trust: Cobell v. Norton -

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