Brands are livestock’s “return address”. Branding is not required in Colorado, but the vast majority of livestock owners, particularly cattlemen/women, do brand their animals.
Colorado statutes define a livestock brand as a permanent mark on the hide of an animal, which brand is registered with the Brands Division as a Colorado livestock brand. Tattoos, ear tags, microchips, etc., while useful, are not recognized as brands.
Livestock brands are treated at law as personal property and are recorded in brand deed books and conveyed/transferred by deed.
In Colorado, a brand can be placed anywhere on the animal.
There are currently approximately 30,000 registered Colorado livestock brands.
The State Board of Stock Inspection Commissioners has the authority to determine the assessment amount to be collected on each recorded brand every five years.
The current assessment (2022) covers the period January 1, 2022 through December 31, 2026.
2022 Brand Assessment
Assessment period is January 1, 2022 through December 31, 2026. Brand assessment notices were mailed to all current brand owners on January 10, 2022.
- Brand assessment amount is $300.00 per brand.
- Brands must be paid by June 30, 2022 to be included in the 2022 brand book.
- Postmarks will not be honored. Please mail payment at least 15 days prior to due date to help ensure timely receipt.
- Late fees will apply for any assessment payment not received in the office by June 30, 2022.
- Brand will be canceled if full payment is not received in the office by June 30, 2025.
2027 Brand Assessment (Next Assessment Period)
Assessment period will be January 1, 2027 through December 31, 2031. Brand assessment notices will be mailed to all current brand owners in January of 2027. Please do not mail payment until assessment notice is received. Late fee’s will not be imposed until after June 30, 2027.
The 2017 brand book includes all brands recorded and paid as of June 30, 2017. The price per book is $30.00.
The 2022 brand book will include all brands paid prior to June 30, 2022. The brand book is available for purchase but it will not published or mailed until January 2023. The price per book is $30.00.
Most new brands contain two letters or numbers along with a character such as a bar, slash, quarter circle, etc. It is very difficult to record a two-character brand in Colorado due to the numerous brands already on record, and the fact that in Colorado we do not record separate positions of where the brand must be placed on the animal. A majority of new brands issued contain at least three characters. This office discourages connecting several brand characters together due to the problem of "blotching" the brand upon application to the animal. If the new brand request contains a "miscellaneous object," a regular brand character must be placed either in front of or on top of the miscellaneous object.
The brand requested must be researched against all the current brands on record for conflicts or similar brands. The Brand Commissioner must approve all new brands to be issued. This office has a list of conflicts that we consider and research each time a new brand request is submitted. Simply because a brand is not in the brand book does not mean that brand can be recorded as a new brand. This office requires that at least two things are different between the brand requested and any other current brand in the direct market area.
Allow at least three to six weeks of research time for all new brand requests. Upon approval of a new brand, the applicant is mailed the deed to be signed, notarized and returned to the Brand Office within 30 days. The $200.00 research fee is then applied as a credit to the recording fee and the applicant must send in the assessment fee that is due for the period the brand is to be recorded until the next assessment period. The assessment fee for new brands is pro-rated each year. If the brand requested is denied a letter will be sent to the email or address listed on the application.
A transfer form must be completed in order to add or delete a name or names to or from the recording of a current brand. The transfer fee is $100.00 per brand. All transfers of ownership on Colorado brands must be completed on the transfer form supplied by the brand office.
All persons recorded on the brand must sign the form as sellers of the brand. Please be sure to sign exactly as the brand is currently on record. All seller signatures must be notarized properly on the transfer form. All purchasers must sign the form as purchasers and all signatures must be notarized properly. The back of the form may be used if necessary for additional signatures.
A lease agreement must be completed and filed with the brand office to lease a brand in Colorado. The fee to record a lease agreement is $100.00. The terms of the lease agreement may begin at any time during a 5-year assessment period and will terminate as of the end of that 5-year assessment period, or earlier as specified in the lease agreement.
All recorded owner(s) of the brand must sign as lessor(s) on the lease agreement and all lessor signatures must be notarized properly. All lessee(s) must sign on the lease agreement, but their signatures need not be notarized.
Any cancelled brand that is reinstated shall be charged the applicable late fee in addition to the previous assessment fees due at the time of reinstatement. All cancelled brands must first be researched to determine if the brand can be reinstated. A $200.00 reinstatement research fee will be due to begin the process, and this fee is non-refundable. Please allow at least three to six weeks of research time on all reinstatements.
If unable to reinstate the brand due to conflicting brands on record in the area a letter will be sent to the email or address provided on the application. If the brand is approved a letter will be sent to the email or address provided including the amount due for reinstatement. Once final payment is received brand cards will be issued.
Change or Remove Name
If a brand owners name has changed from marriage, divorce or other legal name change, they can change the name of their brand by completing the Change Name Authorization Statement and providing a copy of the legal name change document, such as the marriage license, divorce decree or other legal name change document. The Brand Office will change the name and issue new brand cards free of charge.
If a brand is recorded as Joint Tenants a deceased owners name can be removed from the brand by completing the Remove Name Form and providing a copy of the death certificate. The Brand Office will remove the name(s) and issue new brand card free of charge.