Farm and Ranch
AgriLife Extension’s Owning Your Piece of Texas course now available online
By Kay Ledbetter, Texas A&M
Oct 12, 2021
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Landowners can find practical tips on key legal issues

The award-winning course, Owning Your Piece of Texas: Key Laws Texas Landowners Need to Know, which has been taught across the state by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s Tiffany Dowell Lashmet and team, is now available online.

"Whether you have owned land for generations or are looking to purchase your first acre, this course is designed to provide practical and helpful information to make your experience in land ownership more enjoyable,” said Lashmet, AgriLife Extension agricultural law specialist, Amarillo.

AgriLife Extension is offering the online course, complete with practical tips and insightful examples, to help explain important legal concepts based on Lashmet’s day-long, in-person course. This self-paced course will take approximately 8.5 hours to complete.

The online course is available on AgriLife Learn, and participants can decide to take the whole course for a total $150, or pay $20 for individual, shorter courses.

Building a program for Texas landowners

Lashmet wrote the book, “Owning Your Piece of Texas: Key Laws Texas Landowners Need to Know,” which includes information on water law, fence law, oil and gas law, eminent domain, landowner liability, access to property, agricultural leases, renewable energy leases, real estate law, pipeline and transmission line easements, the Texas Right-to-Farm statute, special-use tax valuation, and key estate planning documents.

The online course covers every topic in the book and allows participants to rewatch the sections they choose. Those who register online will have access to this course for two years.

Lashmet said she recognized in 2018 that Texas landowners—both those who have owned land for generations and those who are first-time property owners—need information about legal issues that affect their property.

She formed a team that began providing Texas rural landowners and agricultural producers with general guidance and education on key legal issues related to their property.

The handbook she wrote to accompany the course is the only one of its kind that gathers such a broad range of topics in one place and is written not for attorneys, but for lay landowners.

While the in-person courses were temporarily paused due to COVID-19, Lashmet and team are planning to resume them this year. Those interested in finding a future in-person or online event to attend can go to Lashmet’s Upcoming Presentations webpage.

The handbook can be downloaded as a PDF or a hard copy can be purchased by emailing Lacrecia.garza@ag.tamu.edu.