Navigating Mineral and Surface Contracts
It can be a time of excitement when a landowner is contacted regarding some sort of mineral or surface rights proposition. Be it a cell tower, wind turbines, a pipeline, or the sale or lease of mineral rights, landowners need to be certain they are protecting their interests. As well as some landowners know every inch of their property, oftentimes that knowledge is no more than six inches deep and stops long before drilling is fruitful.
According to Crystal McDonough, landowners are periodically at a disadvantage when negotiating such contracts because the other party is the one with the data of geologists, professional landmen, and even surrounding contract values for comparison. Simple mistakes- like entering automatically renewing contracts- can be avoided by utilizing a seasoned natural resources attorney.
A cattleman attempting to quickly learn the oil and gas, surface use, or mineral rights leasing finer points is much like an oil and gas man walking into the livestock auction to purchase cattle with only a basic understanding of the business. An expert at your proverbial elbow could prevent a multitude of mistakes and avoid trouble as deep as the shale.
Knowing what mineral and surface rights might bring in a competitive bid situation can also be important information for a landowner hoping to identify a buyer. Perhaps most importantly, an experienced oil and gas attorney can ensure that a landowner knows exactly what type of rights they own in addition to surface rights.
With contract negotiations, the more data and information a landowner has, the more bargaining power they have and that is worth more than even a steadily bobbing oil derrick or wind turbine.