A dancer at a powwow. Photo: Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape Tribal Nation
Law | Federal Recognition

Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape Tribal Nation secures revival of recognition case





The Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape Tribal Nation can proceed with a lawsuit that seek to resolve its status in New Jersey.

In a unanimous decision on Tuesday, the Superior Court of New Jersey Appellate Division said the tribe's case was wrongly dismissed.

“We are deeply grateful and prayerful for the Appellate Court’s carefully considered decision,” Co-Chief Mark Gould said in a press release.

The tribe claims recognition through a 1982 law and other actions taken by the state. But the administration of Gov. Chris Christie (R), who unsuccessfully ran for president in 2016, claims there are no tribes in the state.

As a result, the tribe and its citizens cannot benefit from federal laws such as the Indian Arts and Crafts Act, which includes a provision regarding state-recognized tribes. The tribe's company, NLT Management, might also lose a federal contract under the 8(a) program at the Small Business Administration.

The lawsuit will now return to a lower court for further proceedings.

Read More on the Story:
N.J. Indian tribe gets court's OK to keep fighting for legal recognition (NJ.Com 7/13)
Court allows tribe's lawsuit over recognition to advance (AP 7/13)

Superior Court of New Jersey Appellate Division Decision:
Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape Tribal Nation v. Hoffman (July 10, 2017)

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