About Water Rights

What is a Water Right?

A water right is authorization to use water in a prescribed manner, not to own the water itself. Without diversion and beneficial use What's This?, there is no water right.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get a water right?

What are the types of water rights and how do I establish one?

Can a water right be changed?

How do I transfer a water right?

What is a claim?

How do I find a certified water right examiner?

How does the application process for a water right work?

Water Right Search

Search through Snake River Basin Adjudication (SRBA) claims and other water rights. Use the text-based search for non-SRBA rights.

New Listings

*Listings prior to January 1, 2001.

Included: Applications ready for publication or formerly published.
Not Included: Approved, denied, and withdrawn applications.

  • New Applications - Search for applications for permit, applications for amendment, and statutory claims posted in the past 30 days;
  • New Transfers
  • Advanced Search - Find information about specific new water right listings.

Federal Wild & Scenic Rivers - Find new water right filing information and data related to the Wild & Scenic Rivers area.

Moratorium Orders Issued by IDWR - Applications undergoing review by IDWR or being held without action (due to moratorium or administrative action).


We welcome feedback about the New Listings Search.

Applications, Forms & Fees:

Helpful Resources:

  • Water Right Finder
    Search by parcel or address for your water right.
  • Water Supply Bank
    Water users who will not be using all or a portion of their water rights in a given year can place their rights in the Idaho Water Resource Board's Water Supply Bank to make water available to other water users.


  • 42-226 - Ground Waters are Public Waters
  • 42-201(2) - When a Water Right is Required
  • 42-229 - Methods of Appropriation