Dereliction of Duty at Eastern District Regional and Chickasaw Agency offices of the Bureau of Indian Affairs

My last post went into detail as to the reasons why I am entitled to a meeting with the Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs to discuss a CDIB issue, not a “tribal enrollment dispute,” The Department of Interior would do well in noting 25 C.F.R. Sections 16.2, 16.3 and 16.4.

I was informed by the Tulsa Field Solicitor’s Office that it had been trying to get a certified copy of our Determination of Heirship for over a year. That office obtained a certified copy in 2014 (issued in 2011). We were informed by the Tulsa Solicitor’s office that it had sent a certified copy of the Heirship Determination to the Bureau offices in Muskogee and Ada because it felt the BIA had not addressed the issue when it opted to ignore the Determination of Heirship on our Grandmother’s estate and extensive public documentation. My Grandmother died with 40 acres of her original homestead allotment and it was still restricted property. It appears to have remained tax exempt from tax records I obtained as late as 1940 even though the land was sold in 1930.

“[f]or whom legal assistance should be rendered pursuant to the regulations…”
I demand legal assistance to resolve my issue! The Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs has an obligation to hear my complaint and to get the Bureau offices responsible for IGNORING THE LAW AND DERELICTION OF DUTY to do their jobs! However, this isn’t the first time the Bureau of Indian Affairs has had a glaring problem with abuse of discretion, among other things.
Helen Nowlin, Attorney

Text of relevant sections of 25 C.F.R. provided:
§ 16.2 Scope of regulations.The regulations in this part set forth procedures for discharging the responsibilities of the Secretary in connection with the performance by State courts, as authorized by Federal statutes, of certain functions which affect properties in which a restricted interest is owned by an Indian of the Five Civilized Tribes. These State court functions pertain to such proceedings as guardianship, heirship determination, will probate, estate administration, conveyance approval, partition of real property, confirmation of title to real property, and appeal from action removing or failing to remove restrictions against alienation. In addition, the regulations in this part set forth procedures for discharging certain other responsibilities of the Secretary not necessarily involving State court functions, such as escheat of estates of deceased Indians of the Five Civilized Tribes.
§ 16.3 Legal representation in State courts.The statutory duties of the Secretary to furnish legal advice to any Indian of the Five Civilized Tribes, and to represent such Indian in State courts, in matters affecting a restricted interest owned by such Indian, shall be performed by attorneys on the staff of the Solicitor, under the supervision of the Field Solicitor. Such advice and representation shall be undertaken to the extent that the Field Solicitor in his discretion shall consider necessary to discharge said duties, with due regard to the complexity of the legal action contemplated, the availability of staff attorneys for such purposes, the value and extent of the restricted interests involved, possible conflicts between Indians claiming to be owners of such interests, the preference of such owners concerning legal representation, the financial resources available to such owners, the extent to which such owners require similar legal services in connection with their unrestricted properties, and any other factor appropriate for consideration.
§ 16.4 Exchange of information within the Department.To the extent that information may be useful in discharging the duties covered by the regulations in this part, the Bureau shall furnish to the Field Solicitor, either on a current basis or at periodic intervals, processes and notices received concerning court cases and information, as current and complete as may reasonably be obtainable, concerning the estate and status of an Indian of the Five Civilized Tribes for whom legal assistance should be rendered pursuant to the regulations in this part. Similarly, to the extent that such information may be useful for Bureau action or records, the Field Solicitor shall advise the Bureau of court proceedings, information received, and action taken in furnishing legal services pursuant to the regulations in this part.

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