Hunting is a valuable tool for helping
to manage wildlife, particularly the state's deer herd, which can cause
significant crop damage and expose livestock to disease.
seasons for deer and other wildlife provide opportunities for landowners to profit from lease arrangements that provide hunters the ability to engage in the sport on the landowner's privately owned land in return for payment. Yet, many landowners are reluctant to allow hunters on their land
due to liability concerns.
It's important to know that Part 733 of the
state Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act provides
landowners with premises liability protection when a third party is injured on the landowner's property regardless of whether the people entering the
property have permission or not, or whether the landowner charges fees or not.
This means that farm owners that lease their property to a lessee for the purpose of fishing or hunting have legal protections against potential lawsuits. In order for the landowner to be held liable, the person bringing suit must prove that the owner:
To make hunting lease arrangements less troubling for landowners, Michigan Farm Bureau created a sample hunting lease agreement. The form sets forth guidelines for landowners and hunters so that both parties can enter a lease arrangement with greater confidence.
The intent of the sample hunting lease agreement is to serve only as a guide. The parties should consult an attorney to draft a more detailed lease or to modify the suggested lease agreement.
Download the sample hunting lease agreement and follow the recommended instructions below.