Figuring out who has the mineral rights to a particular piece of land can be a difficult proposition. It depends on where you live, when the land was sold, whether anyone has oil or gas leases on the land, and more. However, understanding what mineral rights are and how they have been viewed historically can help you get to the bottom of any mineral rights problems that you have.
In some places in the world, all mineral rights belonging to the government. This includes oil and gas, too. People can own what sits on top of the land, but they have to have permission from the government to extract anything that lies beneath the surface.
In the United States, it is different. Most of the time, the mineral rights to a piece of land come along with the purchase of that land. The owner of a piece of land, then, owns both the surface rights and the mineral rights. This is called a fee simple estate. It means that the owner controls what is on the surface, what was below the surface, and even what is in the air above a property. That owner can then lease, gift, bequeath, or even sell these rights the others.
In many cases, it is more difficult than this to figure out who owns the mineral rights of a land. Because of sales, leases, gifts, and more in the past, there are many pieces of land that are partially owned by one entity and partially by another. For instance, one person may have oil rights while another has gas rights. This can make it difficult to figure out who is entitled to what.
Many states now also have laws that govern these mineral rights. People cannot simply dig into a piece of land because they own it and have the right to it. Instead, they often need permission from the state, or at least to do so within that state’s laws.
In the simplest transactions, people sell all of the rights to a particular mineral or another reserve on their land for a certain amount of money. Someone might come to a landowner and say, “I’ll pay you $300,000 for all of the coal on your land.” If the owner agrees, the money changes hands, and now the surface owner of the land is different then the person who owns the mineral rights. Basically, the property is shared.
However, this can get more complicated. Maybe a company wants to lease the mineral rights to a land, or an owner does not want to sell but is willing to lease instead. Sometimes, landowners want to continue receiving a portion of the proceeds from any minerals found on their land.
There are all sorts of complicated relationships, and that’s why companies like Majr Resources exist. We can help you figure out how to get the best possible deal, whether you’re buying, selling, leasing, or doing anything else with mineral rights. We want to help you have the best experience possible