Official Government Website


What is a water right adjudication?

An adjudication is a court proceeding that inventories and catalogs water rights at a snapshot in time. The court issues a decree confirming the elements of each water right. The Idaho Supreme Court chose the 5th Judicial District court in Twin Falls to conduct the adjudication.  The Idaho Department of Water Resources acts as a technical expert.

Which Adjudication applies to me?

Five (5) general stream Adjudications cover almost the entire state of Idaho.  What types of water rights can be claimed and the process for filing a claim depends on where you are at within the state and what adjudication applies to you:

Click on the map to the right to determine which Adjudication boundary your water use is within:

Why is my basin being adjudicated?

The purpose of the general adjudication of water rights is to make a complete and accurate record of all existing water rights.  IDWR must have this list to deliver water to those who are entitled to it when disputes arise. Also, the list is needed to estimate how much water is available for future development.  The reason for determining all water rights in one single large adjudication is to obtain a single decree which is binding for everyone.

How do I know if I should file a claim?

A Notice of Claim should be filed for all water rights including unrecorded water rights (established through historic use by the diversion and application of water to a beneficial use), previously decreed or licensed rights, or water right permits if proof of beneficial use was filed on or before the commencement of the Adjudication.

Water users of a small domestic and/or stockwater (“D&S”) right, as defined by Idaho Code §§ 42-111 & 42-1401A, may elect to file a Notice of Claim now or defer (postpone) the filing until a later time in this proceeding.

If you receive your water from a city system, water district, or water delivery organization, that entity should file for your use.  You can verify that your water delivery organization filed a claim by using the Idaho Department of Water Resources water right search tool, or by contacting your water delivery organization.

2022 Reports

Adjudication Progress Report – May

Adjudication Progress Report – March

Adjudication Progress Report – February

Adjudication Progress Report – January

2021 Reports

Adjudication Progress Report – November

Adjudication Progress Report – October

Adjudication Progress Report – September

Adjudication Progress Report – July

Adjudication Progress Report – June

Adjudication Progress Report – May

Adjudication Progress Report – April

Adjudication Progress Report – March

Adjudication Progress Report – February

Adjudication Progress Report – January

Upcoming Meetings & Events

No event found!

Click image to enlarge
Helpful Links


Northern Idaho Adjudication Brochure

What to File – Claim vs. Application for Permit Flowchart

Claim Fee Schedule

IDAPA 37.03.01 – Adjudication Rules

ver: 3.5.0a | last updated:
Jump back to top of page button