Legal Question in Native American Law in California

financial woes

Hi,the question i have is,i am Native American,and i ve been hearing of funds my family and i are able to recieve?i know my tribe.....what else do i need to do.?pls help.......ty

Asked on 11/17/04, 2:09 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Bryan Whipple Bryan R. R. Whipple, Attorney at Law

Re: financial woes

Eligibility for tribal benefits may depend upon one or more of several criteria, but the most usual are (1) tribal membership, and (2) residing on the reservation. Other criteria could be age, need for a benefit (such as schooling, health care, job retraining and so forth).

Each tribe sets its own criteria for membership, usually based upon ancestry. Often 50% ancestry from the tribe is required, but this varies.

I believe most tribes have membership evaluation committees or officers and standardized processes for receiving and processing applications from persons claiming to be eligible for membership.

Due to the recent influx of casino-based wealth, a lot of tribes have many new applications, some questionable and some downright fraudulent, so the process of qualifying can be slow.

Assuming yo aren't currently an official member of your tribe, you should contact its member application screening department or official. You can find tribal Web sites on line, then an e-mail or two or a phone call or two should put you in contact with the right person.

Read more
Answered on 11/19/04, 11:49 am

Related Questions & Answers

More Native American Law questions and answers in California