Practice Area: Federal Indian Law

Dedicated to the Representation of Indian Nations and the Native American Interest

See also: American Indian Wills, Trusts, & Estates


 Smith and Shellenberger, LLC lawyers specializing in federal indian law and native american law

  • General Federal Indian Law
  • Government Relations
  • Statute and Regulation drafting
  • Contracts and Agreements
  • Gaming
  • Housing
  • Commercial Transactions and Economic Development
  • Real Estate and Land Issues
  • Human Resources and Employment Issues
  • Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA)
  • Enrollment and Membership
  • Taxation
  • Health Services
  • Tribal Schools & Education
  • General Tribal Law
  • Tribal Law Enforcement
  • Tribal Enrollment
  • Environment and Natural Resources
  • Probate issues

In addition to Tribal government and Tribal organizations, our attorneys have worked with many tribal enterprises, businesses, and individuals, as well as innovative work revising Tribal Codes to incorporate tribal traditions into the law of the people.  This sort of activity is only possible with a deep understanding and sensitivity to the nuances of tribal traditions and language, a unique understanding on which Smith & Shellenberger, LLC, prides itself.

Click here to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced Indian law attorneys.

Licensed Jurisdictions

Federal Courts: United States District Court of Colorado

States: Colorado

Tribal Courts:

  • Navajo Nation
  • Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe
  • Flandreau Santee Sioux
  • Hualapai Tribe
  • Oglala Sioux Tribe
  • Osage Nation
  • Ponca Tribe of Nebraska
  • Southern Ute
  • Ute Mountain Ute
  • Ute








Smith & Shellenberger, LLC Indian law practice area is headed by three of the most distinguished attorneys practicing Indian law today. The three partners alone have 45 years of combined Indian law experience to offer clients and their professional lives have been dedicated to the representation of American Indian tribes, members and organizations.

Our attorneys have grass roots experience living and working in tribal communities, and the firm’s partners all have experience teaching law classes at the college or professional level.  Their backgrounds provide an understanding of and sensitivity to tribal ways and customs that are crucial to providing successful representation, which undeniably sets our services apart.

The attorneys at Smith & Shellenberger, LLC are skilled negotiators and Indian law experts with longstanding ties to the tribal nations of Arizona, Colorado, Nebraska, New York, South Dakota, and Oklahoma.  We have a deep commitment to tribal sovereignty, tribal self-government and tribal self-determination. It is our firm policy that representing parties against Indian nations, even if ethically permitted, is a direct conflict without dedication and commitment to promoting tribal sovereignty, tribal self-determination, and tribal self-governance, and disloyal to our tribal clients. This dedication to tribal sovereignty, tribal self-determination, and tribal self-governance is a cornerstone value upon which the firm is built.

Smith & Shellenberger, LLC recognizes the unique situation of each tribal client. Our attorneys understand the differences among tribal communities, not just in terms of culture and tradition, but also economic, social, political history, and governmental structure and nuances. As a result, our work in Indian Law is calibrated specifically for each tribe and tribal organization, and in a manner that serves them best and responds to their specific needs and priorities. This leads to the most effective and cost-effective utilization of our attorney’s experience and expertise in tribal law, Federal Indian Law, and other areas of law.

Our attorneys have a remarkably broad range of experience working with Native American Indian Tribal nations and Indian organizations. This includes general tribal governmental matters, jurisdictional issues, land issue, tribal courts, 638 contracting, employment and personnel issues, insurance issues, casino management and compliance issues, and construction, to name a few areas. Our main practice includes the following areas: