Ramona Monroe and Wade Foster Look at the Legal Rights Needed by a Mining Company to Mine


In an article for North American Mining, Ramona Monroe and Wade Foster discuss the fundamental legal rights a mining company must obtain for it to be able to explore for minerals and develop a mine.

The three overarching legal rights the authors identify are the need to:

  • Procure access to mineral rights, starting with due diligence to identify and address issues or conflicts related to a mineral claim.
  • Gain access to capital to fund additional exploration activities—the end goal being to prove a commercial deposit, demonstrate economic feasibility to develop, and gain the backing of a major mining company with the revenue or resources to finance mine development.
  • Obtain governmental and social licenses, which the authors write is “[t]he greatest challenge to opening a new mine in the U.S. today…” thanks to the need to obtain a variety of federal, state, and local permits, as well as the approval of society, required to build and operate a mine.

Monroe and Foster note that a critical shortage exists in the U.S. of lawyers, landmen, and other professionals knowledgeable about minerals, mining, and the business of mining, citing the need for “more professionals to develop policies and regulatory modifications, support exploration and claim establishment, negotiate funding structures, and obtain the licenses needed to supply the growing demand for domestically produced minerals.”

Read the full article here.

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