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Courts of Indian Offenses-Application Marriage/Dissolution

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Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior.


Notice of proposed renewal of information collection.


As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Bureau of Indian Affairs is seeking comments on the renewal of OMB Control No. 1076-0094, Law and Order on Indian Reservations. Under subpart F of the regulations, basic information is requested of applicants for the issuance of a marriage license or for the dissolution of a marriage by a Court of Indian Offenses.


Submit comments on or before January 3, 2005.


Send comments to Ralph Gonzales, Office of Tribal Services, Bureau of Indian Affairs, 1951 Constitution Avenue, NW., Mail Stop Room 320, South Interior Building, Washington, DC 20240; Telephone: 202-513-7629.

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You may request further information or obtain copies of the proposed information collection request from Ralph Gonzales at (202) 513-7629.

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I. Abstract

The Bureau of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior, must collect personal information to carry out the requirements of 25 CFR Part 11, sections 11.600(c), Marriage, and 11.606(c), Dissolution of Marriage. Information is collected by the Clerk of the Court of Indian Offenses in order for the Court to issue a marriage license or dissolve a marriage. The information is collected on a one-page application requesting only basic information necessary for the Court to properly dispose of the matter.

II. Method of Collection

The information is collected on a one-page application for the marriage license or for a dissolution of marriage.

III. Information Collected

Courts of Indian Offenses (CFR Courts) have been established on certain Indian reservations under the authority vested in the Secretary of the Interior by 5 U.S.C. 301, 25 U.S.C. 2 and 9, and 25 U.S.C. 13, which authorizes appropriations for “Indian judges.” See Tillett v. Hodel, 730 F. Supp. 381 (W.D. Okla. 1990), aff'd 931 F.2d 636 (10th Cir. 1991) United States v. Clapox, 13 Sawy. 349, 35 F. 575 (D. Ore. 1888). The CFR Courts provide adequate machinery for the administration of justice for Indian tribes in those areas where tribes retain jurisdiction over Indians and is exclusive of state jurisdiction but where tribal courts have not been established to exercise that jurisdiction. Accordingly, CFR Courts exercise jurisdiction under part 11 of Title 25 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Domestic relations are governed by 25 CFR 11.600 which authorizes the CFR Court to conduct marriages and dissolve marriages. In order to be married in a CFR Court, a marriage license must be obtained (25 CFR 11.600, 601). To comply with this requirement, an applicant must respond to the following six questions found at 25 CFR 11.600(c):

(c) A marriage license application shall include the following information:

(1) Name, sex, occupation, address, social security number, and date and place of birth for each party to the proposed marriage;

(2) If either party was previously married, his or her name, and the date, place, and court in which the marriage was dissolved or declared invalid or the date and place of death of the former spouse;

(3) Name and address of the parents or guardian of each party;

(4) Whether the parties are related to each other and, if so, their relationship;

(5) The name and date of birth of any child of which both parties are parents, Start Printed Page 64095born before the making of the application, unless their parental rights and the parent and child relationship with respect to the child have been terminated; and

(6) A certificate of the results of any medical examination required by either applicable tribal ordinances, or the laws of the State in which the Indian country under the jurisdiction of the Court of Indian Offenses is located.

For the purposes of section 11.600, Marriage, Social Security number information is requested to confirm identity. Previous marriage information is requested to avoid multiple simultaneous marriages, and to ensure that any pre-existing legal relationships are dissolved. Information on consanguinity is requested to avoid conflict with state or tribal laws against marriages between parties who are related by blood as defined in such laws. Medical examination information may be requested if required under the laws of the state in which the Court of Indian Offenses is located.

To comply with the requirement for dissolution of marriage, an applicant must respond to the following six questions found at 25 CFR 11.606(c):

(1) The age, occupation, and length of residence within the Indian country under the jurisdiction of the court of each party;

(2) The date of the marriage and the place at which it was registered;

(3) That jurisdictional requirements are met and that the marriage is irretrievably broken in that either—

(i) the parties have lived separate and apart for a period of more than 180 days next preceding the commencement of the proceeding; or

(ii) there is a serious marital discord adversely affecting the attitude of one or both of the parties toward the marriage, and there is no reasonable prospect of reconciliation;

(4) The names, age, and addresses of all living children of the marriage and whether the wife is pregnant;

(5) Any arrangement as to support, custody, and visitation of the children and maintenance of a spouse; and

(6) The relief sought.

For the purposes of section 11.606, Dissolution proceedings, information on occupation and residency is necessary to establish court jurisdiction. Information on the status of the parties, whether they have lived apart 180 days or if there is serious marital discord warranting dissolution, is necessary for the court to determine if dissolution is proper. Information on the children of the marriage, their ages and whether the wife is pregnant is necessary for the court to determine the appropriate level of support that may be required from the non-custodial parent.

Description of the need for the information and proposed use of the information: The information is submitted in order to obtain or retain a benefit, namely, the issuance of a marriage license or a decree of dissolution of marriage from the Court of Indian Offenses.

Affected entities: Indian applicants that are under the jurisdiction of one of the Courts of Indian Offenses.

Estimated number of respondents: Approximately 260 applications for a marriage license or petition for dissolution of marriage will be filed in the Courts of Indian Offenses listed at 25 CFR 11.100(a) annually.

Proposed frequency of responses: On occasion as needed.

Burden: The average burden of submitting a marriage license or petition for dissolution of marriage is 15 minutes per application. The total annual burden is estimated as 65 hours.

Estimated cost: There are no costs to consider, except estimated costs of $100 per court annually, for the material, supplies and staff time required by the Court of Indian Offenses.

IV. Request for Comments

The Bureau of Indian Affairs requests your comments on this collection concerning:

(a) The necessity of this information collection for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;

(b) The accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden (hours and cost) of the collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumption used;

(c) Ways we could enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and

(d) Ways we could minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, such as through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

Please note that an agency may not sponsor or request, and an individual need not respond to, a collection of information unless it has a valid OMB Control Number. The OMB Control Number for this collection is 1076-0094.

It is our policy to make all comments available to the public for review at the location listed in the ADDRESSES section, Room 320-SIB, during the hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., e.s.t., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. If you wish to have your name and/or address withheld, you must state this prominently at the beginning of your comments. We will honor your request according to the requirements of the law. All comments from organizations or representatives will be available for review. We may withhold comments from review for other reasons.

OMB Control Number: 1076-0094.

Type of Review: Renewal.

Title: Title 25 CFR 11, Subpart F, Law and Order on Indian Reservations.

Brief Description of Collection: It is mandatory for respondent to complete an application, to receive a marriage license or obtain a decree of dissolution of marriage.

Respondents: Persons who reside on land within the jurisdiction of a Court of Indian Offenses.

Number of Respondents: 260.

Estimated Time per Response: 15 minutes.

Frequency of Response: On occasion.

Total Annual Burden to Respondents: 65 hours.

Total Annual Cost to Respondents: Negligible.

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Dated: October 18, 2004.

David W. Anderson,

Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs.

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[FR Doc. 04-24518 Filed 11-2-04; 8:45 am]