Cobell Settlement Payments - How Do I Apply?

The recent Cobell settlement law will ultimately provide $3.4 Billion in cash payments to Native Americans who have ownership rights in one or both of two categories:

Payments for Individual Money Accounts: Congress has allocated $1.4 Billion to compensate Native Americans who hold government issued Individual Money Accounts, which were supposed to receive deposits from the federal government from sources such as lease revenues from oil drilling on Tribal land. People who hold Individual Money Accounts will receive varying sums of money from the settlement, depending on the determination of how much money the government should have allocated to a person’s account over the years.

Payments for Land Shares: Congress has allocated $2 Billion to buy back the “fractionated” land shares held by many Native Americans, which have often resulted in dozens of people being owners of a small percentage of a piece of land that previously belonged to their Tribe. People who hold these ownership shares in land will have the option to sell them back to the government, which will then turn the land back over to the Tribe to be placed in trust. The amount of money the government will pay for a given share of land ownership has not yet been determined.

If you are not currently receiving quarterly or annual IIM account statements and believe you are part of this Settlement, you must File a Claim / Register to Participate. You can File a Claim / Register to Participate online or print out a paper Claim Form that you can fill out and submit by mail.
If you are currently receiving quarterly or annual IIM account statements, you should still complete if you also:

  • Believe you owned an interest in trust or restricted land on September 30, 2009; or
  • Believe you had an IIM account open sometime between 1985 and September 30, 2009 and are not receiving current statements on that account; or
  • Want to establish your status as an heir to a deceased IIM account holder or individual landowner.

The information that you provide on the Claim Form will only be used to process your claim and to update Department of the Interior records.



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Comments (12) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
geraldine claunch - February 13, 2011 1:00 PM

i dont know what this settlement is all about but would like to know more and my address has recently changed. hopefully it will be something that native americans will actually benefit from. i am 3/8 cheyenne and arapaho and like i said dont know much about it so any information would be helpful to me. my address is 127 west himes norman oklahoma 73072. thank you.

carmen rodriguez - April 6, 2011 1:44 PM

MY question is when will we start seeing our payments in our accounts?

Charles Cantwell-WhiteTial - June 9, 2011 10:28 AM

I am Ill and hope that I am NOT like my elders,dying before justice has been served. We Natives has been through enough problems!When will WE be able to have a calm spirit?

shelley - June 26, 2011 5:02 PM

This is a joke -- if $99 million goes to crooked lawyers, what does that leave us? Oh big deal, a lousy $1000 payment. If that's the case, I'm not selling.

francis tikanye - July 7, 2011 3:28 AM

I thought this was to benefit the native americans whose land has been ripped off by the government;and land stakes have been removed bearing alloted numbers;but this is nothing but another rip off,of us native americans,who inhereit our great grandfathers land;this is nothing but a get rich scheme; lawyers get rich, mrs.cobell gets rich, most the the money goes back to the government by the name of education;and all we get is a lousy thousand bucks;I mean where is the justice here;the government benefited from our land use for over 200 years and built america to what it is now;at least give each of us 10,000 dollars;every cent of it should come to the IIM land owners;we are not stupid,do the right thing,if you mrs.cobell want to do justice for the native people,instead of giving it back to the government. We as native people have no government,don't make this into a another great government rip off;that will go down in history as a joke to the native americans people;

Curt - July 27, 2011 12:11 PM

it would be much more understandable is the legal team would have explained much more of the "wheels of justice" and how they apply in civil matters such as these. Whether its up to the Courts to issue the order, they should have explained that this process can take years and even with the Government changing every 4 years, an exchange in power can delay this even longer. And with the national debt crisis, this could even affect the process. I hope they come to some positive resolve soon, because the native american have been under the responsibility since the dawn of their time. Its time they compensate for their wrong-doings.

Diana King - September 27, 2011 5:41 AM

Guys, Were just Indians after all. On White Earth Rez in Minnesota when the white people started to complain that they could not get a bank loan on clouded title land, did the government pay them off at todays land values of $2,000.00 per acre and give us back our land? NO NO NO even though this was reservation land which the US Government was entrusted with to make sure we had it to live on by Treaty. NO NO they payed off a tribal chairman to the tune of about $77.00 dollars an acre or the value of the land at the time of the illegal sale or theift plus interest. I worked for a US Senator in 1993, the BIA was being invetigated at that time, I sat in congressional meetings, where the BIA admitted that the actions of the BIA could be conciders criminal and nothing was done then and nothing will be done now, it just goes on and on. If a white person were to set up a trust for their children and it had been handled like our trust funds have been handled, some heads would roll and some people would be in jail, not so if it is our children.

Hazel Jones-Merritt - October 20, 2011 6:15 AM

I've heard nothing from my claim that I filed couple months or even two year ago. It's under my name with my siblings and my mother that "we" are the heirs of my late father, Tom Fred Jones Todeschene's oil royality. (He was a allotee).
Please inform me on my file claim and when do we get our share?
Thank you.
Hazel Jones-Merrit
P.O. Drawer 450
Montezuma Creek, Utah 84534

Pauline - November 10, 2011 8:32 PM

So much the goverment did wrong to our native people. The settelement wont cover what our ancestors went through. The case just helped open a few eyes and to get our people to speak out more. It is up to us to do the speaking out so our children and grand children and future generations. we set an example and our children will speak out as well. Eloise set a good eample and faught for some justice. we all know that the settlement wont do justice for our people, But now up to us to keep up the battle. I believe+she+just+wanted+to+prove+the+wrongs+that+happened+.+

Melvin George - January 22, 2013 10:34 AM

I got my $1000.00 in December & when will I get the rest of the settlement. Please send info to my address: PO Box 1631, Kirtland, NM 87417. Thank you!!

derek montoya - January 25, 2013 12:45 AM

requested claim form for cobell settlement was told 7 to 9 business days going 16 days nothing what is going on, yet we are put on adeadline is it another lie you think us people are dumb and because you settled for what another lie and put the finger on us this time. another govenment lie.

Freda Kalama - June 3, 2014 2:16 PM

I was wanting to know if my sibling could claim my father's disbursement of Cobell settlement, if his deceased or would it be apart of his probate?

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