Posts tagged landowners


Make a list and check it twice

When transit companies purchase insurance for their fleet of taxis or buses, they have to list every taxi driver or bus driver in their application.  Conservation defense is similar.  For each category of property right you choose to insure (conservation easement, trail easement, fee land, etc.) you have to list every parcel.  If you leave out parcels owned by some landowners, it prevents Terrafirma from accurately determining how much your insurance should cost.  Worse, it could cause problems later on when you’re trying to submit a claim.  So make sure when you’re enrolling or updating your application to include all of the parcels for each category of property rights you’ve chosen to insure.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about listing parcels or anything else, please let us know. You can email us directly or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.


Let people know you have Terrafirma

Participating in Terrafirma shows your land trust’s commitment to long-term defense of the land it owns or helped conserve. It shows that you understand how pooling resources with hundreds of other conservation organizations to share risk and resources helps everyone uphold conservation permanently. Let your landowners know that your land trust is a member owner of Terrafirma and how that helps to preserve their conservation vision. Here’s a sample letter to show you one way that another land trust shared the good news.  

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about filing claims or anything else, please let us know. You can email us directly or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.


Find Challenges Challenging to Define?

Make plans now to track challenges that you may need to report on your Terrafirma membership confirmation next year. Remember, you do not need to report challenges if there is no damage to the property, nominal volunteer or staff time was needed to address the challenge, and you incurred no out of pocket expenses. To help you keep track of the different types of challenges, please see the definitions below.

 

Challenge

Definition

Violation

includes prohibited structures and uses, excessive recreational activity (such as all-terrain vehicles), surface alteration, timber harvest, and dumping, violation of a management plan and anything else that explicitly violates the stated terms of a conservation easement

Trespass

includes actions by third parties (neighbors, developers, government and so forth) such as vegetation removal, structural encroachment, fences, topography change and so forth.

Litigation Notice

when you receive written notice that a lawsuit has been filed against the land trust

Verbal or Other Threat of Violation or Trespass

includes threats to violate the conservation easement or trespass on fee land or conservation easement

Disregard of Easement Obligation

this is a catch all section for when a legal challenge does not fit into any other category for example transfer of water rights on paper to a holding company that technically disregards the no severance provision of the conservation easement but functionally retains the water rights in the same ownership

Mediation or Arbitration Notice

when you receive written notice of mediation or arbitration action

Adverse Claim of Legal Right

including adverse possession, contest by heir, boundary challenge, etc.

 

We’re here to help! If you have any questions about filing claims or anything else, please let us know. Email us at help@terrafirma.org or call 202-800-2219 for Lorri or 802-262-6051 for Leslie.


Avoid Confusion with Clear and Complete Approval Letters

Remember that any approval letter or form that you write for a landowner creates an important permanent record.

If the landowner later disputes it or acts contrary to it, attorneys on both sides of the dispute will be carefully scrutinizing every word of your letter or form for ambiguities and nuanced interpretations that could help them. So you want it to be both friendly and firm for the landowner, while clearly and completely documenting all conditions of the approval.

Be sure to attach all relevant maps, photos, diagrams or other depictions of limitations and conditions to avoid any confusion later on. If you requested maps, proposals, or other documentation to approve the landowner action, then attach those documents and incorporate them into the approval!

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