Dividing Land

IntroductionSheridan County has adopted various land use regulations as enabled by state statutes, to safeguard life and property from harm and to protect the rights and safety of the public. This guide is designed to assist in determining what county regulations are applicable when an individual desires to divide or sell part of their property.

You are encouraged to contact the Public Works Department to ensure the appropriate permits have been secured prior to the purchase or sale of land. Wyoming Statute provides for penalties for those not complying with these regulations.

Definition Of A SubdivisionSubdivision means the creation or division of a lot, tract, parcel or other unit of land for the immediate or future purpose of sale, building development or redevelopment, for residential, recreational, industrial, commercial or public uses.

“Sell” or “sale” includes sale as evidenced by the delivery of a deed, contract for deed, lease, assignment, auction or award by lottery concerning a subdivision or any part of a subdivision. “Sell” or “sale” does not include a contract to sell which is expressly contingent upon the recording of the final plat by the county clerk, if all funds paid by the buyer under the contract are escrowed with a financial institution located in this state or a title company licensed to do business in this state until the final plat is recorded and the seller tenders the deed or the contract to sell is cancelled or the buyer and seller agree otherwise in writing.

When A Subdivision Permit Is RequiredGenerally, a subdivision permit is required when a landowner desires to divide his property and to sell one or more parcels of land for development or residential purposes which are eighty (80) acres or less in size. County approval is also required if the sale of land will result in leaving the landowner with a parcel of land eighty (80) acres or less. This must be secured prior to the sale of the property and prior to recording the deed. Certain exemptions are allowed.

EXEMPTIONS (Section 1.4 b. of the Rules and Regulations Governing the Division of Land)

b. Exemptions.

i. Unless the method of sale or other disposition is adopted for the purpose of evading the provisions of these rules and regulations, these rules and regulations shall not apply to the following divisions of land however, the following divisions are subject to requirements regarding documentation of the proper use and implementation of the following exemptions:

A. A division which creates cemetery lots.

B. A division which is created by the sale or other disposition of land to the State of Wyoming or any political subdivision thereof.

C. A division which is a sale or other disposition of land for agricultural purposes or affects the alignment of property lines for agricultural purposes.

D. Lands located within incorporated cities or towns.

E. A division which may be created by any court of this state pursuant to the law of eminent domain, by operation of law or by order of any court in this state (i.e. a court ordered division of property).

F. A division which affects railroad rights-of-way.

G. A division which is created by a lien, mortgage, deed of trust or any other security instrument, easements and rights-of-way.

H. A division which is created by boundary line adjustments where the parcel, subject of the sale or other disposition, is adjacent to and merged with other land owned by the grantee.

I. A division which is created by the acquisition of an interest in land in the name of the husband and wife or other persons in joint tenancy or as tenants in common, and the interest shall be deemed for purposes of this subsection as only one interest.

J. A division of land made outside of platted subdivisions for the purpose of a single gift or sale to a member of the landowner’s immediate family, subject to the following requirements:

1. A member of the immediate family is limited to any person who is a natural or adopted child, stepchild, spouse, sibling, grandchild, grandparent or parent of the landowner;

2. The purpose of the division is to provide for the housing, business or agricultural needs of the grantee;

3. The land shall have been titled in the name of the grantor, or in the name of a trust controlled by the grantor, for a combined period of not less than five (5) years for land titled before February 27, 2019, or ten (10) years for land titled on or after February 27, 2019. Parcels created under this paragraph shall be titled in the name of the immediate family member for whom the division is made for a period of not less than five (5) years, or not less than one (1) year if the parcel was created before February 27, 2019, unless the parcels are subject to  involuntary transfer including, but not limited to, foreclosure, death, judicial sale, condemnation or bankruptcy;

4. No parcel smaller than five acres created under this paragraph shall be further divided unless the owner obtains a subdivision permit pursuant to W. S. 18-5-304.

5. Where the landowner is a business entity and eighty percent (80%) of the ownership interest or shares in the business entity are held by, or in the name of a trust controlled by, individuals related by blood or marriage, the sale or gift may be made subject to the provisions of this section to an immediate family member of any shareholder who has owned at least five percent (5%) of the outstanding shares for at least five (5) years continuously before the date of the sale or gift.

K. A division of land creating a parcel five (5) acres or less for the purpose of establishing unmanned communication facilities, compressor stations, metering stations, fiber optic booster stations or similar unmanned facilities.

L. The sale or disposition of separate parcels of land that were separate when lawfully created or conveyed and which have not been combined by a record instrument of conveyance signed by all of the owners.

ii. These rules and regulations shall not apply to the sale or other disposition of a Large Acreage Subdivision:

A. that was developed and promoted on, or prior to, October 7, 2008, as a Large Acreage Subdivision, as evidenced by dated plat maps, sales brochures or other evidence acceptable to the Board; OR

B. where the original parcel from which the Large Acreage Subdivision is made was lawfully recorded on or before October 7, 2008 provided:

1. the original parcel is not divided into more than 10 parcels where each new or remaining parcel is no greater than 80 acres and no less than 35 acres; and

2. the requirements of Section 2.10.d. & e. and Section 1.4.a.v. are met for each parcel created out of the original parcel.

iii. These rules and regulations shall not apply to the sale or other disposition of land where the parcels involved are more than eighty (80) acres.

Procedures For Obtaining A Subdivision PermitThe first step in obtaining a permit is to meet with the Planning office to discuss the landowners plans and how those plans correspond with the land use regulations adopted by Sheridan County. Subdivision Permits are issued by the Board of County Commissioners after a series of public meetings.

Information Required For A PermitA complete listing of the required information and procedures can be found in the Rules and Regulations - Division of Land. The Subdivision Permit requires the property be surveyed and a plat be filed and recorded in the office of the County Clerk. Various reports and supporting information may also be necessary.

Cost Of A Permit
A complete list of fees can be found in the Sheridan County Land Use Fee Schedule.