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LIVESTOCK BRANDS


 
Applying for a brand
When applying for a livestock brand, MDOL suggests applying for brands that are side by side containing two letters and/or numbers, with bars, quarter circles or slashes.
 
Brands that cannot be issued include: Single letters/figures; monograms; one character/symbol; inverted letter/number brand; and brands containing the letters "I,” “G,” “Q," the number “1,” or standing quarter circles. Additionally, there are no “CC” or “JJ” combinations available for prime positions.
 
If you have no preference for a brand, please send a list of ideas, preferred locations, and counties where your livestock will range.
 
When recording a brand to a company, corporation, partnership, etc., please furnish a list of all officers and people authorized to sign bills of sale when selling livestock. Business names must be registered with the MT Secretary of State's office (www.sos.mt.gov), or proof of registration with another state must be provided.
  • Put either 'AND' or 'OR' between owner names. If 'AND' is used between names, ownership indicates Tenants in Common. Also all parties must sign each bill of sale for branded livestock; if 'OR' is used, ownership indicates Joint Ownership with right of survivorship. Also anyone of the owners can sign bills of sale for branded livestock on behalf of all owners
  • All recorded brand owners will have to sign the Assignment of Brand to transfer or make any future change in owner name
 
The fee for recording a brand is $200, half of which ($100) is non-refundable; payment is required when submitting your application.

Printable brand applications can be downloaded below.

Please note that it is not possible to issue or check the availability of brands on the phone.
 
Ornamental Brands
Ornamental brands are for decorative purposes only; any application of ornamental brands to livestock is strictly prohibited. Ornamental brands otherwise work just like real brands – you must apply for the brand you want. If the brand you request is already recorded, it cannot be issued. When applying for an ornamental brand, you may submit several choices to have a better chance of selecting a brand that is available. A fee of $200 is required with the application. 

Be sure to read and complete the ornamental brand application form in its entirety (i.e., name, mailing address, signature to be notarized). 
Ornamental Brand Application Form 
 
Changes to Brand Owner Name
A legal name change, such as a name change due to marriage or divorce, may be completed with a Name Change Affidavit. This affidavit may be submitted with your brand rerecord; otherwise the fee is $10.
A brand transfer constitutes the following scenarios and requires the completion of the Assignment of Brand Form, which can be found on the back of your original brand certificate:
  • Transfer;
  • Adding a name(s);
  • Removing a name(s);
  • Changes to business/ranch name;
  • Changing the word between names from “and” to “or,” or vice versa.
All parties listed as recorded owners on the brand must sign the Assignment of Brand form in order for any change to occur on the brand owner name (except legal name changes done with a name change affidavit).
ALL SIGNATURES MUST BE NOTARIZED
 
Power of Attorney: If a brand owner is unable to sign for medical or other reasons, a person with power of attorney for that brand owner may sign on their behalf. A copy of power of attorney papers must be submitted with the Assignment of Brand form.
Deceased Owner(s): If a brand owner is deceased, see information below or call 406/444-2045.

Owner Name Change For Brands With Deceased Owner(s)
A Brand Owner name change involving a deceased owner requires very specific paperwork. Please call our office with any questions at 406/444-2045.
 
The brand is listed in more than one name and is listed in joint ownership: Submit a completed Assignment of Brand form with signatures of all living brand owners and a certified death certificate for the deceased brand owner. Joint Ownership Affidavit
The estate for the deceased owner was probated: Submit a completed Assignment of Brand form with signatures of all living brand owners and the signature of the Personal Representative of the deceased brand owner. A copy of the certified personal representative papers must be submitted in addition to the Assignment of Brand form.
There was no probate or for the deceased brand owner's estate: Submit a completed Assignment of Brand form with signatures of all living brand owners and all living heirs (spouse or children) of the deceased brand owner. The heirs must each sign an Affidavit of Survivorship and the Assignment of Brand form.

Important Information Regarding Brand Ownership
When recording a brand to a company, corporation, partnership, etc., please furnish a list of all officers and people authorized to sign bills of sale when selling livestock. Business names must be registered with the MT Secretary of State's office (www.sos.mt.gov), or proof of registration with another state must be provided.
  • Put either 'AND' or 'OR' between owner names. If 'AND' is used between names, ownership indicates Tenants in Common. Also all parties must sign each bill of sale for branded livestock; if 'OR' is used, ownership indicates Joint Ownership with right of survivorship. Also anyone of the owners can sign bills of sale for branded livestock on behalf of all owners
  • All recorded brand owners will have to sign the Assignment of Brand to transfer or make any future changes in owner name