Businesses, agriculture clients, and municipalities need to understand and manage their rights to use clean water. This is especially true in the American West, where clients face a growing demand on water resources and must balance future needs with improving instream flows. In the process, they must also navigate changing legislation and permitting.

Water-rights law, permitting, and water resource management policies are integral parts of Geosyntec’s work to address water resources. Our practitioners understand the complex legal issues, regulations, and science surrounding water rights. We bring sound judgment and deep expertise on scales ranging from small catchments to large regional river systems.

Understand and protect your rights to water.

Our specialists work together across disciplines to develop a firm understanding of water law, local hydrogeologic conditions, site history, and regulations. We know that most states have forfeiture regulations; to address these regulations, we compare historic use to authorized quantities to help clients understand their risks (when water is underused) and opportunities (when surplus water can be protected and redeployed).

Get help managing water rights and building water security.

  • Confidential Water-Rights Assessment: Know what you have so you can protect it.
  • Water-Right Acquisitions: Find and purchase water rights.
  • Water-Right Transfers: Understand how to add new lands, new uses, or new sources.
  • Water Banking: Sell or lease surplus water, protect your assets.
  • Well-Drilling Support: Get help with well location, sizing, capacity, and permitting.
  • Spreading: Add acres to irrigate more land.
  • Security: Conduct audits of potential climate-change impacts, curtailment risk, and declining groundwater.

Build solutions grounded in science, law, permitting, planning, and management.

We help clients understand and manage water rights, offering comprehensive support grounded in technical expertise. Our team includes hydrogeologists, water-resources engineers, water-rights specialists, former agency staff, and Certified Water Rights Examiners (CWREs).

Rely on our deep experience addressing water rights for many types of clients.

Homeowners, farmers, irrigators, cities, counties, and other clients turn to us for help buying, selling, and transferring water rights and to develop new water supplies. Our water-rights practitioners have earned their reputation on the forefront of innovation:

  • Experience completing hundreds of water-rights projects in the last decade: Our work includes simple trust donations and transfers, environmental and water-right permitting, water banking, mitigation, monitoring, and long-term water-right strategies.
  • Institutional knowledge of the water code: Our practitioners understand the policy, case law, formal guidance, and procedures that apply to acquisition and protection of water rights. We are competent in the ways rights are conveyed, including by purchase, lease, and donation and we often serve as expert witnesses for water-right court cases.
  • Strong relationships with water resource programs in the western United States: This includes water-rights processing and trust water-right transactions; negotiations on behalf of clients seeking water-right transfers and new water rights; water-bank development and management; development of water management solutions; and expert-witness support. We employ many former water resource agency staff who understand firsthand how agencies apply and interpret their regulations.
  • CWREs and practitioners who serve on county water conservancy boards: With CWREs on staff, we are qualified to conduct the proof examinations to certify water rights. In addition, our staff serves on county water conservancy boards, where they help evaluate and make recommendations for changes in water rights.

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