Sarah Nilsson, JD, PhD, MAS
Sarah Nilsson, JD, PhD, MAS

Montana Drone Laws


HB 644prohibits using UAS to interfere with wildfire suppression efforts. Anyone who violates this prohibition is liable for the amount equivalent to the costs of this interference. The law also prohibits local governments from enacting an ordinance addressing the use of UAS in relation to a wildfire.


On May 1, 2013, the 63rd Legislature of Montana signed Senate Bill (SB) 196 (download below) into law as Chapter 377. This was an act limiting the use of unmanned aerial vehicles by law enforcement; and prohibiting the use of unlawfully obtained information as evidence in court.

SB 196 limits when information gained from the use of unmanned aerial vehicles may be admitted as evidence in any prosecution or proceeding within the state. The information can be used when it was obtained pursuant to a search warrant, or through a judicially recognized exception to search warrants. The new law defines “unmanned aerial vehicle” as “an aircraft that is operated without direct human intervention from on or within the aircraft,” not including satellites.  

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The information on this website is for educational purposes only and DOES NOT constitute legal advice. While the author of this website is an attorney, she is not your attorney, nor are you her client, until you enter into a written agreement with Nilsson Law, PLLC to provide legal services.

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