Houston Mineral Rights Attorneys
Protecting Property Owners in Texas & Nationwide
Oil and gas mineral rights are the rights to remove oil or gas that may be contained under a person's land. In jurisdictions that support such rights they may be separate from other rights to the land. Oil and gas mineral rights entitle a person or company to explore and produce the oil and gas found below the surface of a tract of land. The owner of oil and gas mineral rights can sell, lease, gift or bequest them to others. It is possible to sell or lease rights to the oil and gas beneath a property and retain rights to the surface.
An agreement to convey mineral rights is made between the landowner and company. It is also possible to lease the rights to a specific geologic unit (such as the Barnett Shale) or sell the rights to a specific commodity. When conveying oil and gas mineral rights, a landowner usually desires to sell or lease rights to the underground resources but retain possession and control of the surface. An oil and gas company wants to extract the oil and gas but doesn't want to pay an additional price to acquire the property. In many instances, the surface owner doesn't want to part with the land. The landowner retains the rights to the surface, and the oil and gas company acquires rights to the subsurface.
The U.S. is one of only nations to allow individual citizens to control and profit from the mineral riches underneath their land. Unfortunately, that sort of opportunity comes at a price—particularly when unethical and improper extraction practices leave properties poisoned or unusable.