Electronic Coursebook
ITEM #:  75330721   |   PUBLISHED:  AUGUST 4, 2020

The Law of the Great Outdoors Quick Answer Book

Answers to 150 Questions About Cabins, Lakeshore Property, Hunting and Fishing Law, Recreational Businesses and more!

Hunting and Fishing – Enforcement

  • If I have a carry permit and a license to hunt deer, can I carry a handgun in my vehicle in circumstances that would otherwise violate the deer license?
  • I have an Order for Protection against my ex. He is out hunting deer with a firearm even though the OFP prohibits him from possession of firearms. What can I do?
  • Can I hunt on another person’s lakeshore property as long as I stay between the high-water mark and the low-water mark?
  • If I am legally on a body of water, may I pull my boat into the rushes/cattails adjoining someone else’s private property and hunt duck from there?
  • Can I bring a trophy head back to Minnesota for taxidermy?
  • I’m walking up the middle of a stream to trout fish, and that stream isn’t on my property. Do I have to leave if the property owner tells me to?
  • I’m going to fish on a lake that has a public boat landing. Can I launch my boat from that landing and then go fish in the shallow water within feet of someone else’s property?
  • As a recreational boater, what do I have to do to comply with the aquatic invasive species laws?
  • Do conservation officers have additional powers beyond those of any other peace officer?
  • My neighboring land owner hunts deer over a corn field. Why can’t I just put out a pile of corn?
  • If you catch a bait in a lake can you dispose of the bait in the lake?
  • I was recently discharged from the army about 3 months ago. Do I need to obtain a fishing license to fish in Minnesota? Who needs a license?
  • Can I sell any meat or fish I obtain from hunting or fishing?
  • If you are hunting on public lands and eat an apple and throw it are you baiting or otherwise violating gaming ordinances?

– Chris Pinkert

Effectively Representing a Client Who’s Been Accused of a Hunting or Fishing Violation

  • What is the typical chronology from license check through conviction and subsequent consequences?
  • Under what circumstances can a conservation officer search a home, seasonal cabin, fish house, boat, tent, or vehicle without a search warrant?
  • What constitutes consent to search of the sportsman’s property?
  • Does a sportsman need to know or intend particular things in order to be in violation of game and fish law?
  • What standards are different for recreational and commercial regulation?
  • To what extent must a sportsman cooperate with game and fish enforcement personnel?
  • How do “gross over-limit” regulations affect the average sportsman?
  • What collateral consequences can result from a citation?
  • If a client gets a game or fish citation, what discovery should I seek?
  • When can a conservation officer seize a vehicle, guns, wildlife trophies, computers, or other property?
  • Who owns the wild animal remains?
  • Can law enforcement use electronic technology without a warrant?

– Bill Peterson

Tribal Rights and Natural Resources

  • What rights do tribal members have to hunt, fish and gather natural resources in the State of Minnesota?
  • Generally, what sort of regulations or requirements exist regarding hunting and fishing by tribal members within Indian reservations in the State of Minnesota?
  • Some lands within the Leech Lake Reservation are owned by non-Indians. What rights do tribal members have to hunt, fish, and gather on those privately held lands?
  • Can Indian tribes regulate the hunting, fishing and gathering rights of non-Indians within reservation boundaries?
  • What tribes possess off-reservation hunting, fishing and gathering rights in the State of Minnesota? Where can those rights be exercised?
  • How are Indian treaties interpreted?
  • How are off-reservation treaty rights regulated?
  • Will Indian treaty rights terminate?
  • What is the current dispute over hunting, fishing and gathering rights under the 1855 Treaty?
  • What happens when land development (e.g., pipeline construction, mining) threatens to reduce the availability of the treaty resource?

– Colette Routel

Riparian Rights – When Property Abuts a Body of Water

  • I own property abutting a body of water. Does the ownership of the property extend to the water, or does it extend further?
  • I own property abutting a body of water. Can I put in a dock?
  • I own property abutting a body of water. What rights do I have in the body of water itself?
  • I own property abutting a body of water. What duties do I have?
  • I own property abutting a lake. Who owns the bed of the lake?
  • If an island is created with dredged material, who owns it?
  • Does the public have the right to walk on the beach in front of my cabin?
  • I own property abutting a body of water. The waterline has receded significantly. Can everyone build their docks out further to reach the new waterline?
  • My local government restricts how many docks a landowner can build on their property. When does a restriction limiting what I can do with my own land become a taking that has to be reimbursed?
  • My property doesn’t abut the lakeshore, but I have an easement from the property owners whose land abuts the lake. Can I put up my boat? Swim off the dock? Use a boat lift?

– Charles H. Andresen

Waterfront Land Use and Regulation

  • Department of Natural Resources versus local government, who controls?
  • How do I determine what regulations apply to my property?
  • Where can I build my cabin?
  • Where can I build my accessory structure?
  • What are my restrictions if I want to put in stairs or a lift?
  • What are the requirements if I want to put in a dock?
  • Can I remove that tree?
  • Can I get a variance?
  • What happens if I own adjacent lots that are non-conforming?
  • What is the difference between public waters wetlands and wetlands?
  • Can I build if there are wetlands on my property?

– Scott B. Landsman

Resolving Access Problems with Recreational Property

  • I have a handshake deal with my neighbors to use a road on their property to get to my cabin. Good enough or do I need something in writing?
  • My title company is telling me my property is Abstract, not Torrens. What’s the difference?
  • What advantages and disadvantages come with Torrens property when trying to establish access?
  • We bought property subject to an easement across our property for the neighbor to access their property. That doesn’t prevent us from using our own property, right?!
  • I’ve been approached by my neighbor to sign a cartway petition. What do I need to know?
  • I just bought property that has a gravel road that looks to run to a few other properties. I’m putting up a locked gate. What could go wrong?
  • My family has used the same field road since I can remember. How can we formalize our rights?
  • There’s an old logging road easement that I’ve never seen used. How can I get rid of it?
  • The township has stopped maintaining our road that the township and all the neighbors treated as a public road. Can they do that?
  • We bought the cabin across the road that came with an easement to access to the lake. When I go to sell, the easement stays for my buyer, right?

– Katherine L. Wahlberg

Boundary Disputes Involving Recreational Property

  • How do you establish/defend adverse possession on parcels of recreational property?
  • What constitutes actual, continuous use of waterfront property?
  • My client has an adverse possession claim. Are there any downsides to conveying an offer from the client to purchase a neighbor’s land?
  • When trying to resolve a boundary dispute using deeds, should there be an exchange of quit claim deeds?
  • In connection with the deed, are the services of a surveyor required for the drafting of a legal description, performing field work, or both?
  • What collateral issues are common when there is a conveyance of land to resolve a boundary dispute?
  • To determine how much money to pay to resolve the dispute with a deed, when do I need an appraisal?
  • Are there circumstances that would warrant a grantee accepting a deed without insisting on a partial release of the grantor’s mortgage?
  • May a city or county subdivision ordinance limit parties’ ability to convey a strip of land?
  • What legal description problems can arise when lakeshores serve as boundaries?

– Matthew A. Anderson

How to Keep the Cabin in the Family

  • You love your cabin. But do your family members? Make sure you ask before you develop a plan for the cabin. You might be surprised. Why is communication essential in cabin succession planning?
  • I have an interest in keeping the cabin in the family, but do I need a cabin succession plan? What can I accomplish?
  • My wife and I have “simple” Wills that leave the estate to our children. What are the risks if we do nothing specific to address the cabin transfer?
  • I want my three children to inherit the cabin, but have concerns about co-ownership. What are the most problematic co-ownership considerations and what can be done to mitigate these issues?
  • I’m ready to transfer ownership of the cabin to my children. What are the common methods of a lifetime transfer and what are the advantages of each method?
  • I want to give the cabin to my children but I’m concerned about risks related to divorce, bankruptcy, lawsuits, etc. What can I do to protect my plan for the cabin in light of these concerns?
  • What tax implications are there when considering the transfer of the cabin to family members?
  • I have no interest in transferring cabin ownership while I am living but wish to plan the cabin transfer upon my death. What options are available for transferring the cabin upon death?
  • Cabin Trust versus Cabin LLC. Why choose one over the other?
  • I want to control from the grave! How can I ensure the property stays in the family for future generations?
  • I bought a cabin property/hunting land with two friends. Should we hold title to the cabin in our individual names, or should we hold title in the name of an entity?
  • Our parents transferred the family cabin to me and my brother. My brother wants to sell the cabin and I want to keep it. Do we have to sell the cabin, or is there a way for me to keep the cabin?
  • What is a qualified personal residence trust (QPRT), and can I use one for cabin planning?

– Matthew M. Jensen

Liability, First-Party Property, and Other Common Insurance Coverage Issues Related to Cabin Property

  • My adult son was up at our family cabin, and he broke his leg when he tripped on a loose floorboard. What will my liability insurance cover?
  • I was a guest at a friend’s cabin and another guest hit me while on a four-wheeler. Where do I look for coverage for my personal injury?
  • While friends and I were out on my boat at the cabin, we were drinking. One of my friends then tried to waterski and got injured. Will insurance cover this incident?
  • I regularly allow acquaintances to hunt at my family cabin. Does this have any effect on my insurance? What if one of the hunters is injured or injures someone else on my property?
  • I rent my cabin out through Airbnb, VRBO, Home Away, or privately. Does this carry insurance implications for me?
  • Our cabin is owned in trust (or jointly by multiple family members). Who should be the named insured? What if our current policy doesn’t have the named insured that you just told me we needed? What if the cabin is owned under an LLC? Do I have to get different insurance?
  • When we were out boating at the cabin, a thief broke in and stole five laptops – three from family members, and two from guests. Does my property insurance cover replacement?
  • We take our kayaks and some household items back-and-forth from our home in the cities to our cabin property. I also sometimes do work at my cabin and take property with me for that purpose. Under what type of policy should I insure them?
  • The pipes at our cabin froze and burst, causing substantial damage. Is this covered by my insurance, and if yes, are there any damaged items that will not be covered fully?
  • A storm damaged my cabin and my personal items kept inside. The insurance company paid me “cash value” for the damaged property, but it will cost more than that to replace it. Is this all my insurance will pay for?
  • The same storm damaged other property at my cabin as well, including a fence, a small barn, and my dock. What should I know about how my insurance policy will treat those items?
  • Will my insurance cover damage to my cabin from natural elements like flooding, shoreline erosion, trees falling, or wild animals?
  • A fire damaged my cabin very badly. I submitted the loss to my insurance company, but no matter what I try, they will not offer me anything close to what I think the damaged property is worth. What are my options?
  • Someone crashed their car into my cabin. Where do I look for coverage for the property damage?

– Kathleen K. Curtis, Scott G. Williams & Aidan Zielske

The Ins and Outs of AirBnB and Cabin Rentals

  • What is a Short-Term Rental?
  • Understanding the terms: What is the difference between a lease, sublease agreement, Short-Term Rental agreement, and similar opportunities for fee owners?
  • How are Short-Term Rentals regulated?
  • What City Ordinances or Regulations are in place in Minnesota with regards to Short-Term Rentals and online services like Airbnb?
  • Do I need to be worried about my Short-Term Rental property being deemed a commercially zoned property, or a hotel?
  • What regulatory fees and/or taxes are applicable to Short-Term Rentals?
  • What possible liabilities can I face if a guest is injured during their stay at my cabin?
  • Can I provide renters with rules to abide by when staying at my property?

– Joseph Pates & Mark A. Severson

Common IP Issues Facing Outdoor Businesses

  • We want to start a new line of golf clubs. How do we know the brand name we chose won’t infringe another trademark?
  • We have a new design for a snowboard binding. How do we prevent others from copying our design?
  • We are developing a new website for our camping resort and have found photographs online of people camping that we want to use on the website. There are no copyright notices on any of the photos. In addition, our employees made a great parody video using Lizzo’s song Good as Hell and replacing the words so the song is about backpacking. Is it okay to use these photographs and the video on the website?
  • We worked very hard to find a unique name for our new biking helmets that we launched two years ago. We now see another company using the name. Can we stop them from using the name?
  • We have created a new logo for our Prairie Fields Forever resort. We’re going to use the logo on our website, at the resort and in our gift shop on fitness wear, water bottles, and t-shirts. We may be adding lotions and oils with the logo in a year or so. What steps should we take to best protect our logo so others do not use a mark just like it?
  • We own a resort just outside of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and have spent a lot of time and money developing a marketing brochure for our customers, promoting the resort and describing safety tips for back country backpacking. How do we prevent another business from copying the brochure and our safety tips?
  • We are promoting our new line of fishing lures by sponsoring a fishing contest. We want to use give away a pair of tickets to a Minnesota Vikings game to the winner of the contest. Can we use the Minnesota Viking logo to advertise the contest?
  • We sell a solar powered camp oven. Recently we received a cease and desist letter telling us the oven infringes a patent and were threatened with a lawsuit for patent infringement. What should we do?
  • We have created a new software application that allows people who enjoy outdoor recreation to share GPS coordinates of places in nature they especially enjoy and want to recommend to others to visit. How can we prevent others from copying our idea?
  • We have created this new recipe for Walleye Biscuits we want to use in our Up North Lodge. We also want to sell baking mixes in our gift shop. How do we protect the recipe?

– Ruth A. Rivard

Analyzing Liability Facing Outdoor Businesses

  • I run an outdoor business and I want to limit business’s liability from accidental death or injuries. Is this something I can do by having customers sign a waiver of liability? Is such a waiver enforceable?
  • One of my customers was skiing downhill at my business’s property and hurt a third party. What are my liabilities if any towards the third party?
  • I own a cabin rental company. We rent out over 50 cabins. One weekend a fire burned down 5 of my cabins. One of my customers was injured and now I have to rebuild and cannot rent out my cabins. Who is going to pay for all of this damage?
  • We operate a rental boat company that people use during the summer to fish. One of our boats was damaged and I hired a contractor to repair the boat. The contractor hired a sub-contractor to finish half the job. One of the sub-contractor’s employees got injured while working on my boat. What are my liabilities if any towards that employee?
  • I own a microbrewery and am hosting a music festival for a music production company. The festival was planned to take place in our outdoor seating area and parking lot. There was a bad storm predicted for the day of the festival and all the bands cancelled because our indoor seating area was not big enough to accommodate all the ticketholders to the event. The production company now wants me to pay for all the ticket refunds and the money that it lost for paying the bands in advance and getting equipment for the event. What am I responsible for?
  • I own an outdoor gear shop that sells camping, fishing, and hunting gear. A customer came in and slipped on the floor because it was wet. What is my liability to the customer? How can I limit my liability for future occurrences for a slip & fall situation?
  • We are an association that hosted an outdoor hockey tournament. One of the spectators was hit in the head with a puck and had to be taken to the hospital. What is the association’s liability to pay for the medical expenses? Is there anything we can do to limit our liability?
  • I own a family resort that has a golf course next to a hotel and an attached water park. The resort hosted a golf tournament and were booked to full capacity. The morning of the tournament, the roof of the water park unexpectedly collapsed. No one in the water park was injured, but the main waterline was broken and flooded the hotel, some of the customers cars were damaged by the flying debris, and the golf tournament was cancelled so I had to refund everyone’s entrance fees and hotel reservations. Who is going to pay for all of the damage and lost revenue?
  • I own a dogsledding company. One of my dogs bit a customer. Am I responsible for the dog bite? Can I still use the dog for future sled rides?
  • My company operates a petting zoo that travels to birthday parties. We bring a pony, 3 goats, 2 llamas, a lamb and a tea cup pig, all which the kids get to pet and feed. One boy got sick from E.coli after attending a party where we brought our animals and his parents want us to pay all his hospital bills. Are we responsible? What can we do to limit our liability?

– Adina R. Bergstrom

Understanding the Lacey Act and Its Impact on Businesses – Exporting, Importing, Buying, or Selling Fish, Plants, or Wildlife

  • What sorts of plants, fish, and animals are covered under the Lacey Act?
  • What are the potential consequences for violation of the Lacey Act
  • What sort of conduct is criminalized by the Lacey Act?
  • What about potential civil consequences?
  • Is there an “innocent owner” defense to forfeiture?
  • Are there certain types of businesses that are particularly likely to run into problems with the Lacey Act?
  • What can a business do that deals in the buying and selling of fish, plants, or wildlife to remain compliant with the Lacey Act?

– Evan Weiner

Major Employment & Labor Issues Facing Outdoor Businesses

  • Are seasonal employees the same as temporary employees or independent contractors?
  • Do I need an employee handbook if most of my employees are seasonal workers?
  • What is the new wage theft law and what does it mean for seasonal workers?
  • Do I have to pay overtime to seasonal employees?
  • My busiest season is in the summer, so I hire a lot of temporary staff to help with my business. Do I have to provide health coverage or other benefits to my seasonal employees?
  • What about breaks and leave, do I have to give those to seasonal workers?
  • If a temporary employee is injured on the job does that affect my worker’s compensation and insurance policy coverage?
  • I’m having a hard time hiring seasonal workers, is it possible for me to hire foreign seasonal workers?
  • The immigration laws are too complicated, can I really do it?
  • What about hiring teenagers during the summer, are there any special rules or restrictions?
  • Do I really have to worry about filling out my I-9 forms perfectly? After all, this employee is only here for six months!

– Grant T. Collins


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