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Tractor Talk Discussion Forum

Ohio oil rights

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Cole Younger

04-01-2013 18:57:30

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Family had been getting oil checks from 1900"s til 1986 when last well went dry. Now they are getting ready to do deep well drilling and fracking Dad owned 20% of mineral rights.Dad passed away in Dec. I called distant cousin on Sat. asked if Dad still had oil rights he told me our rights were abandoned since our last oil check was in1986 and the mineral rights go back to the property owner which is him. We didn"t abandon anything they just quit sending checks to Dad. Then he told me this new tech is making lots of farmers milionares. In Illinois the mineral rights never go back to the owner unless you buy them back or already own them with the land.This don"t sound right to me.

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Mike M

04-02-2013 06:38:07

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
Wait until they go after you to plug the abandoned well ! You might not want to stir anything up ?

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Billy C.

04-02-2013 05:37:58

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
I know I"ll probably get lambasted for this, but I am very opionated on this. I don"t think ANYONE should be able to retain any mineral rights. ALL should go to buyer of land. I never have and NEVER will buy any land where mineral rights are retained. I own land in an area where strip mining for lignite is being done now and if someone else owned part of my mineral rights my hardwoods could be destroyed without my permission and my hunting would cease to exist.

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Old Bob

04-02-2013 18:08:12

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Billy C., 04-02-2013 05:37:58  
You would be compensated for surface damages.

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Traditional Farmer

04-02-2013 05:23:28

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
Not a lawyer but involved with a couple of these things,it all depends on how the original agreement was written and state laws as to whether it goes with the owner of the land or the individual involved.
You need to get ahold of the originial agreement if you can.Also estate laws apply and they vary greatly from state to state.

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04-02-2013 05:05:38

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
I think that all mineral rights that are not in production or under lease after ten years should revert back to land owner..the person that owns the top surface should have some say so about who can come on their land and what they can do....

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04-02-2013 02:37:03

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
Ya gotta do a title search. The leaseholder will certainly do one, but you can do it yourself and see if you're entitled to any royalties or not. What it boils down to is whether or not your father's mineral rights were deeded to anyone. If not, they get split among his heirs. At least that's the way it is in Colorado, which is the only state for which I have any practical knowledge.

So you need to go to the court house and do a title search on the property in question. You need to find the deed that transferred your father's 20 percent to him and any subsequent transactions. You'll also need your dad's will and any other estate papers proving you're entitled to a share. At that point, you should have a pretty good idea if you have a claim, then you can decide if you want to get an attorney involved. Having done the research yourself should save you some legal bills.

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04-01-2013 21:57:36

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
The primary thing you need to get from these responses: Get a good Ohio O&G attorney.

The law on mineral rights varies from state to state. Here in Louisiana mineral rights can be retained by the seller of a property for 10 years, and in perpetuity if production commences during that 10 years. If there is no exploration/production during that time, the mineral rights revert to the new owner of the property. Not sure, but I think that if existing production ceases for 10 consecutive years mineral rights go to the current owner of the property.

I can vouch for both situations: I bought 12 acres in 1989; the seller retained mineral rights. There was no exploration or production for 10 years, so the mineral rights reverted to me. To my great joy, a couple of years later I learned that my land sits about dead-center of the Haynesville Shale gas field. (I didn't learn that until after I had signed a low-ball lease with Chesapeake Energy, however.) One of the first of hundreds of Haynesville wells was drilled about a mile from my place.

The other situation: In about 1980 my parents sold the old family lands, about 200 acres. They retained mineral rights. In this case there had been continuous production of shallow gas in the section since back in the 40s. When my parents died the mineral rights (and royalties) passed to my brother and me. This property too was found to be in the heart of the Haynesville Shale. Several Haynesville wells have been drilled there, so I am now receiving royalties from a lease signed 70 years ago, on land that we haven't owned since 1980.

See a lawyer.

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04-01-2013 23:01:53

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to JerryS, 04-01-2013 21:57:36  
Sad but true - any time there's any real money involved, you have to share it with a lawyer to get any of it!

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old bc

04-01-2013 21:39:55

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
I have an attorney friend that that does searches for the companies that drill in the Fayetteville Shale for gas in Arkansas. He said that they want to know the name of anyone who ever had mineral rights on a property.

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big jt

04-01-2013 21:04:53

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
Yeah I have to agree with the others. Mineral rights do not go back to land owner.

My personal experience is in North Dakota. These rights have been split any different way from Sunday, but the rightful heirs still have claim to them if they want to probate the wills involved in North Dakota. If they don't go through this process the royalties go to the state of North Dakota in this case.

Your cousin is maybe thinking he can get the Lease money which Oil companies seemingly are not as picky about proof of ownership. However when Royalties start coming in he will have a tougher time laying claim to them as the Oil Companies require proper proof of ownership.

Simple version get yourself a good Ohio mineral rights attorney. Do NOT shop on price. In North Dakota I can name one attorney to Run away from at a thousand miles a hour and can recommend another. I am a trustee with a trust that was set up to gather up these rights into a more salable product which we are now trying to disolve. This whole process has cost the beneficiaries many thousands in legal fees caused by the train wreck of the original attorney.

Get a Good Attorney. If you don't have a family attorney who can recomend one maybe John T can help.


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Steve Sewell

04-01-2013 19:44:35

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
Cole I live in Ohio but i"m NOT a lawyer. Short answer is YES your Dad would still own the rights. That company that is going to pay $$$ for the oil lease will do a title search and look for the mineral owners with a legal notice in the local paper. If not found then the mineral rights MAY go back to the property owner. You need to talk to a lawyer in the Ohio county that the property is located to see how the rights can be transfered from your Dads estate to you.


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Cole Younger

04-01-2013 20:01:38

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Steve Sewell, 04-01-2013 19:44:35  
It's in Muskingum co. I'll call the Estate Attorney tomorrow and have him look into it. These oil checks were collected by my Great Grandmother,Grandfather,Dad, then my brother and me get the shaft ,didn't think it sounded right.20% of something is better than nothing

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Old bob

04-01-2013 19:23:31

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
In Arkansas if you have your mineral rights to your property or own mineral rights to someone else property you own them forever, or until you sell. Regardless of producing or not. I have never heard of them reverting to the property owner if production has ceased. But I also know mineral law varies from state to state. Good luck and move fast on this issue. If there is big bucks there the battle becomes more difficult.

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04-01-2013 19:09:54

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 Re: Ohio oil rights in reply to Cole Younger, 04-01-2013 18:57:30  
Hi...Get a lawyer that handles mineral rights, he will have to search deeds to find out.. Here in Pa, lots of issues on rights.. but make sure you have sub surface rights along with surface rights..big difference..We have over 50 rigs here in my local twp.alot of money being paid. Good Luck!

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