NRS 533.060
Right to use limited to amount necessary

  • loss or abandonment of rights
  • no acquisition of prescriptive right
  • reservation of rights by State.


Rights to the use of water must be limited and restricted to as much as may be necessary, when reasonably and economically used for irrigation and other beneficial purposes, irrespective of the carrying capacity of the ditch. The balance of the water not so appropriated must be allowed to flow in the natural stream from which the ditch draws its supply of water, and must not be considered as having been appropriated thereby.


Rights to the use of surface water shall not be deemed to be lost or otherwise forfeited for the failure to use the water therefrom for a beneficial purpose.


A surface water right that is appurtenant to land formerly used primarily for agricultural purposes is not subject to a determination of abandonment if the surface water right:


Is appurtenant to land that has been converted to urban use; or


Has been dedicated to or acquired by a water purveyor, public utility or public body for municipal use.


In a determination of whether a right to use surface water has been abandoned, a presumption that the right to use the surface water has not been abandoned is created upon the submission of records, photographs, receipts, contracts, affidavits or any other proof of the occurrence of any of the following events or actions within a 10-year period immediately preceding any claim that the right to use the water has been abandoned:


The delivery of water;


The payment of any costs of maintenance and other operational costs incurred in delivering the water;


The payment of any costs for capital improvements, including works of diversion and irrigation; or


The actual performance of maintenance related to the delivery of the water.


A prescriptive right to the use of the water or any of the public water appropriated or unappropriated may not be acquired by adverse possession. Any such right to appropriate any of the water must be initiated by applying to the State Engineer for a permit to appropriate the water as provided in this chapter.


The State of Nevada reserves for its own present and future use all rights to the use and diversion of water acquired pursuant to chapter 462, Statutes of Nevada 1963, or otherwise existing within the watersheds of Marlette Lake, Franktown Creek and Hobart Creek and not lawfully appropriated on April 26, 1963, by any person other than the Marlette Lake Company. Such a right must not be appropriated by any person without the express consent of the Legislature.

Source: Section 533.060 — Right to use limited to amount necessary; loss or abandonment of rights; no acquisition of prescriptive right; reservation of rights by State., https://www.­leg.­state.­nv.­us/NRS/NRS-533.­html#NRS533Sec060.

“Interbasin transfer of groundwater” defined.
“Person” defined.
“State Engineer” defined.
“Stream system” defined.
“Wildlife purposes” defined.
Legislative declaration.
Water belongs to public.
Applicability of chapter to de minimus collection of precipitation.
Appropriation for beneficial use
Beneficial use: Basis, measure and limit of right to use.
Determination of priority of water right acquired for use in federal reclamation project
Water used for beneficial purposes to remain appurtenant to place of use
Right to divert ceases when necessity for use does not exist.
Beneficial use of water declared a public use
Storage of water for beneficial purpose
Right to use limited to amount necessary
Standards of measurement.
Quantity of water appropriated limited to amount reasonably required for beneficial use
Rotation in use of water.
State water right surveyors: Certain projects required to be performed by surveyor
Vested rights to water not impaired.
Duty of State Engineer to reserve certain amount of groundwater.
Temporary conversion of agricultural water for certain purposes: Legislative declaration
State Engineer prohibited from carrying out duties in conflict with certain decrees, orders, compacts or agreements.
State Engineer, assistants and agents authorized to enter land to investigate and carry out duties.
Last Updated

Feb. 5, 2021

§ 533.060’s source at nv​.us