How U.S. Supreme Court Tribal Ruling in Oklahoma Impacts Title Industry, Property Rights

September 1, 2020

In a 5-4 decision in McGirt v. Oklahoma, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the reservation for the Muscogee (Creek) Nation in eastern Oklahoma was never abolished by Congress. While the holding of the McGirt v. Oklahoma case is narrow in scope to address criminal jurisdiction of the Muscogee under the Major Crimes Act (MCA), the ruling means Muscogee (Creek) Nation may now assert civil and administrative jurisdiction over all land contained within the boundaries of the reservation. If a large amount of land in Oklahoma is technically still a Native American reservation, even though many non-tribal members own land within the reservation boundaries, whose laws apply to which actions, people and parcels of land? Read on for analysis of how this case affects the the industry and property rights.

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