How to find area of overlapping polygons?

Discussion created by tibbs on May 24, 2013
Latest reply on May 31, 2013 by tibbs
I have three different polygons that overlap in different places and I want to find the total area of all the polygons.  I'm worried about getting a "double" or "triple" count of the area where the polygons overlap. 

Some info on the layers:

The largest layer is a boundary polygon of forest service land with one attribute, another layer is land classified by the Department of Land Management as harvestable (for timber) and part of this overlaps the first layer and the third layer, the third layer is land classified for timber management by a different department.

I would like to know the area of these three layers without double counting the overlapping part.

I am new to forums so I apologize if I use incorrect procedure