Lessons from My Agricultural Law Course (Part 2): Agricultural Leases

This semester I am teaching a course on Agricultural Law at the Texas A&M University School of Law in Ft. Worth.  As part of that, I have gathered up materials on a variety of agricultural law related issues for my students.  One of my main goals is to share practical information with my students that will help them in the event they end up in rural Texas practicing agricultural law.  In light of that, I thought that I would share some of the more interesting articles I come across with you all on the blog.  Don’t worry, I will not be assigning any case briefs or requiring homework assignments, but for those of you interested in agricultural law issues, some of these articles and resources might be helpful to you.

grazing lease 2

Our second topic of discussion this semester is one that I frequently discuss on this blog and in my presentations:  agricultural leases.  In addition to there being several key court cases related to this topic, there are also numerous great articles and sources of information available online.  Here are some useful links.

  • Probably the best one-stop-shop for information on agricultural leases is the Ag Lease 101 website.  This website provides a host of information including a document library that includes lease publications, worksheets, and lease forms.  Additionally, the website offers leasing power points and evaluation questions for educators offering leasing programs.
  • My students were assigned to read a Farm Progress Article titled “Good Reasons to Use Flexible Cash Farm Leases.”  The article does a great job discussing the basics of flex leases and provides real-world examples to help explain this concept.
  • Iowa State University has a farm leasing website that also provides great information on lease agreements including information about historic rental rates, articles discussing how to improve lease agreements, and spreadsheets to assist in computing rental rates.
  • The USDA National Agriculture Statistics Service publishes information on average lease rates by state and by county each year.  This data is available on the USDA NASS website.
  • Lastly, I have created checklists for drafting grazing leases and hunting leases that are available for free online.  I hope to have a similar checklist for negotiating farm leases completed and published by the end of the year.

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