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  • How A Dominant Mineral Estate Holder Rights Can Be Limited!

    September 4, 2019

    According to the Texas law of Dominant Estate, the owner of mineral rights on a piece of land has dominant control over the surface, even when mineral ownership and surface ownership have been separated.

    If you are an owner with mineral rights for sale., the new owner of those rights gains control of the surface land for exploring and producing minerals.

    Fortunately, there are a few ways you can limit surface activities if you plan ahead when you sell your mineral rights.

    What Is Dominant Estate?

    Dominant Estate is a Texas law that establishes that the person or entity owning the mineral rights of a piece of land has dominant control over the surface estate which gives them the ability to enter the surface land owned by someone else to explore and/or drill it in the places required to produce minerals.

    Dominant Estate remains with the mineral property at all times, even if the surface land is sold again and again, a factor that can sometimes become a problem for landowners or those looking to buy a particular piece of land.

    Dominant Mineral Estates Affect the Surface Estates

    Because the owner of a mineral estate retains control of the surface to explore and produce minerals, this can negatively affect the surface estate.

    After selling their mineral rights, landowners can no longer control how, when, and where the mineral owner may enter the surface and start exploration.

    This can be extremely troublesome when a landowner wants to do certain things with the property or even sell the property, as Dominant Estate might make that property less desirable for someone else to purchase.

    How Can You Limit Dominant Estate Control?

    The good news for those with mineral rights for sale is that it is possible to limit Dominant Estate in a few ways so that landowners can retain some degree of control over what happens on the land when these elements are negotiated and written into the sales contract:

    • Reasonable Use - The mineral owner must use the land in a reasonable way to explore and extract minerals without causing unnecessary damage to the surface; they must ;essentially respect the land.

    • Liability for Negligence - The mineral owner may not act negligently in ways that result in unnecessary damage to the land or environment as outlined in the contract.

    • Accommodation Doctrine - The surface owner retains some control of land that is currently in use or will be in use if: such usage meets certain criteria; substantial impairment of the surface would make it unusable; no other alternative for the surface owner would allow them to continue use of the land as it is being used; and there are reasonable alternatives that the mineral owner can take to avoid destruction of the surface and allow surface use to continue.

    • Common Courtesy Act - Requires that mineral owners notify landowners a minimum of 15 days prior to their intent to enter a property to drill or access a capped well; however, these details should be carefully spelled out as this act contradicts Dominant Estate laws in certain ways.

    • Individual Negotiations - Landowners may be able to negotiate specific agreements with the mineral estate owner based on specific circumstances.

    Pay Attention to Contract Details!

    For anyone selling their mineral rights estate separately from their land estate, it’s essential that negotiations be made regarding the surface domain and the landowner’s rights.

    Landowners can retain at least some control over what happens on their land even after mineral rights have been severed from surface rights by including any essential accommodations in the sales contract.

    When you want to sell your mineral estate, an experienced royalties professional can help you negotiate a favorable agreement with a buyer to satisfy the needs of both parties!

    Got Mineral Rights For Sale In Texas?

    Permico Royalties Can Sell Your Mineral Rights!

    Call (432) 242-7335 To Learn More!

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