An inter se proceeding, in the context of a water rights adjudication, is a proceeding in which all water rights owners in the basin have the opportunity to object to one another’s water rights.
Historically, in New Mexico the Court adjudicated water rights in two separate proceedings: First, the Court adjudicated the water rights of a water right claimant in a proceeding between the claimant and the State of New Mexico (acting through the Office of the State Engineer). Second, after all water rights in a basin had been adjudicated as between the claimants and the State of New Mexico, the Court adjudicated any objections that water rights owners had to one another’s water rights in another proceeding known as an “inter se proceeding”.
In the AUB, the Court is adjudicating water rights in “expedited inter se proceedings”. In an expedited inter se proceeding, the Court adjudicates the water rights of a water right claimant in a single proceeding involving the claimant, the State of New Mexico and any other person in the basin who objects to the claimant’s water rights.