Through the Landowner Preference Program in Colorado, individuals who own private hunting or agricultural property can receive tags to hunt big game on their property through a special draw. Colorado allows those landowners to sell or transfer these tags to hunters willing to pay a premium for the chance to hunt private land with a special tag. However, there are certain rules you need to be sure that you and the landowner are following to ensure your hunt stays legal.
Landowner tags may only be transferred from the actual landowner or their designated land manager to the hunter. Outfitters, guides, or hunting membership organization leaders may NOT transfer tags to their clients or members without being the actual land manager. To become the land manager, you must have this documented in writing through a written lease, contract, or agreement. Any tag that is transferred by anyone other than the designated land manager or the actual landowner is void and any game taken with the tag has been illegally harvested.
Advertising landowner tags for sale also includes several special regulations. Any advertisement for a landowner tag MUST contain contact information for the landowner or designated land manager. If you are accepting an advertisement for a landowner tag, the payment for placing the advertisement (if there is a fee required for placing the advertisement for selling a landowner tag) cannot be based on the sale price, must be a flat fee, cannot be commission based, and cannot be contingent upon sale or transfer of the tag. Those accepting advertisements may also not accept any kind of referral fee for putting landowners and hunters in touch.
Accepting a tag from anyone other than the landowner or designated land manager may get you in trouble with the Colorado Parks and Wildlife law enforcement. Game wardens that investigate these kinds of violations will likely still issue tickets to the hunter involved in the taking of game with an illegal tag. If you see advertisements that do not follow the rules for advertising, you may not want to bother with that tag, no matter how tempting the price or opportunity may be. The law is clear and you may receive a ticket for illegal hunting even if you didn’t know the tag was illegal.
Nate Gilbert, attorney in Denver, CO, has experience helping individuals and companies with defense of illegal tags as well as setting up proper protocols for managing landowner tags. Working with individuals to defend against charges received for hunting with invalid tags, Nate has gained experience in dealing with CPW and their law enforcement division. Additionally, Nate has experience in helping outfitters and landowners set up management systems to efficiently and legally transfer landowner tags to hunters.