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Are Your Colorado Water Rights Protected?

July 27th, 2020

Are you a Colorado water right holder? If so, your water rights could be at risk.

The Colorado Division of Water Resources (DWR) has recently proposed its decennial abandonment list, and over 4,000 water rights were declared abandoned. Water is a precious resource, especially in an arid state like Colorado, and water rights offer immense value to property owners.

If this is a concern for you, you may want to review the Colorado Division of Water Resources’ (DWR) 2020 Abandonment List. According to the DWR, “abandonment is the termination of an absolute water right in whole or in part as a result of the intent of the owner to discontinue permanently the use of all or part of the water available thereunder. Failure to apply a water right to beneficial use when water was available for a period of ten or more years results in a rebuttable presumption of abandonment. Once the rebuttable presumption is established through non-use, the burden shifts to the owner of the water right to prove that they did not intend to abandon the water right.”

According to the DWR website, notice of proposed abandoned rights will be mailed to last known owner by July 31, 2020. However, records are not always current, and we encourage you to visit the list here to verify your property is safe. More information can be found on-line here, and in the abandonment timeline released by the DWR below.

If your water right is at risk, or if you have any further questions about this process, our Development Services team is happy to assist you. Click here to get in touch. 


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