Bureau of Indian Affairs [BIA] Law and Legal Definition

Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is an agency within the U.S. Department of the Interior. BIA was established in the year 1824. BIA administers and manages 55 million surface acres and 57 million acres of subsurface minerals estates held in trust by the U.S. for American Indian, Indian tribes, and Alaska Natives. BIA provides its services to approximately 1.9 million American Indians and Alaska Natives either directly or through contracts, grants, or compacts. BIA’s mission is to enhance the quality of life, to promote economic opportunity, and to carry out the responsibility to protect and improve the trust assets of American Indians, Indian tribes, and Alaska Natives.