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Marion County, WV

Group formed to share information on lease/drilling activity in the Marcellus Shale Play under Marion County, West Virginia

Members: 67
Latest Activity: Jul 13

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Discussion Forum

Trans Energy Jones 2H Well Metz WV

Started by Rick Clark. Last reply by Judi Blackwell Jul 13. 7 Replies

Freeland 1 and 2

Started by Ronald Church. Last reply by James Smith Aug 4, 2015. 7 Replies

Mannington District, Marion County

Started by Karen. Last reply by RONNIE J. TALKINGTON Jan 8, 2013. 7 Replies

What's the advantage?

Started by Daniel Morris. Last reply by kkw Dec 4, 2012. 5 Replies

Lincoln district?

Started by brian t watson. Last reply by J. Rossi Dec 4, 2012. 7 Replies

Marion County Drilling Activity

Started by Daniel Morris. Last reply by Dee Fulton Sep 7, 2011. 6 Replies

simple question ?

Started by Julie Goodblessing Corcoran. Last reply by Todd Charles Apr 4, 2011. 3 Replies

Royalty Payments--What can I expect?

Started by Daniel Morris. Last reply by Todd Charles Mar 26, 2011. 1 Reply

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Comment by David on May 24, 2013 at 2:58pm


I just wanted to let you know about an upcoming Seminar Series through the YPE called Energy Industry Training Series- It’s 12 part series, although you can just attend one or two if you like. The first Seminar is in June, and gives a complete overview of both the Marcellus and Utica plays.

You can learn more here!

http://ypepittsburgh.org/?page_id=591

Comment by Lisa on October 12, 2012 at 7:04pm

Hi Kyle,

Regarding EQT, they feel they have proven to us via the letter they sent to the previous owner at the end of 2010 telling him they would "allow" the free gas to continue while he's the owner but if he ever sells the property "the free gas rights MAY not convey". I don't see how they can just wake up one morning and decide to terminate the lease. As far as I can tell, the lease wording states as long as gas is being produced for them, this lease remains in effect.

I will definitely tap into the knowledge of the ladies at the desk at Marion county. I'm pretty good with looking things up and researching, so I hope it goes smoothly and I find lots of good information. For me, just knowing who owned the property all through the years and who first bought & built on the property will be an awesome keepsake! However, we need to know this information because I would like to see a clearer copy of the lease agreements and keep them on hand for future reference for our friends at EQT. We did send them a letter back stating we need proof of this termination by 10/19/12. They're probably still laughing at us as we speak! LOL So, I'm sure after my trip to "Almost Heaven", you will be needed as our new attorney on this project.

Thanks so much for all your help!

Lisa

 

Comment by Kyle Nuttall on October 12, 2012 at 11:32am

Marion County might be busy right now.  There's drilling activity going on in the eastern portion of the county.  Sometimes when they're busy the courthouse will limit the number of landmen in the record room.  But they'll make exceptions for landowners and lawyers.

Marion County is a little difficult to figure out.  Make sure to ask the ladies at the front desk for help when you first get there.  

If you know the current mineral owners, it's best to start there.  If you don't, start with what you know and work back.  Most people have to start with their own deed for surface.  Newer deeds usually include references to the deed where the grantor acquired his/her interest.  Pull that deed and see if there's a reference.  Wash, rinse, and repeat until you get to a deed that doesn't include a reference.  Then you'll need to go to the grantee books and find the name of the grantor from that deed.  The courthouse ladies will be glad to help you through this process.  If you get stuck, they will be able to help you out.  There are usually several ways to find out who owned the property previously.  Just make sure to ask them.  Once you've gotten as far back as you can go, check the documents for any mineral reservations.  Follow that name forward to present, using the grantor books.  There's a little more to it, but the courthouse ladies will be able to help you out there better than I can here.

Regards the free gas, EQT will do it's best to get you to give it up.  There's quite a bit of liability they take on when there is free gas.  But if it's there, they can't take it away.  It's their responsibility to prove that the free gas rights have terminated, not yours to prove they exist.  

Comment by Lisa on October 11, 2012 at 6:42pm

Hi Kyle,

I'm sure we will be in touch with you very soon. EQT is giving us a hard time about our "free gas rights" whcih have been conveying since 1924. We have drafted another letter to them, explaining that all their equipment remains on our property and that we have found no termination in lease agreements recorded anywhere. I am making a trip out to WV next week to spend a day or two at the courthouse. I'm just hoping that's enough time to pull the deeds/leases back to 1924. I have a copy of the 1924 lease agreement and also the 1948 lease extension. I just have to move forward from 1948 until 2010 when the previous owner purchased the property. I hear the lines are long at the courthouse record rooms and you can wait awhile. I only have two business days (Fri/Mon) to work on this and then we will be travelling back home. Hopefully, I will find what we need. Any suggestions on how to pull who owns the mineral/gas/oil rights to our property? Would it be attached to the deeds? Thanks again

Lisa

Comment by Kyle Nuttall on September 24, 2012 at 12:36pm

Glad to help out.  That's why I'm on this forum.  There just aren't enough attorney working for the mineral and surface owners.  It makes it tough to get good information and help about oil and gas issues.  Let me know if you have any other questions.

Comment by Lisa on September 23, 2012 at 2:11pm

Kyle,

Thanks so much for the info, once again! I also spoke with a guy from the county who mentioned that it's imperitive to get a baseline water test BEFORE any drilling begins around us. He gave me the name of two agencies that I can call to have the testing done: Reliance Lab and Sturm Environment, both located in Bridgeport, WV.

So much for our peaceful, quiet, beautiful retirement property that we were going to move our horses to! We are definitely inside the one mile radius to the property they are planning on putting several wells on. I just hope I can get everything done prior to the start of any drilling.

I will post updates on how we are progressing. Thanks again!

 

Comment by Kyle Nuttall on September 22, 2012 at 12:29am

I work across the state, and am based in Upshur County.  Most of the oil and gas work that I have to do is easily done with a computer and phone.  When you figure you need an attorney I'll be glad to step up.

The oil and gas companies usually won't contact a surface owner until they need something from them.  Sometimes the first you know about development is when you get a notification from the Office of Oil and Gas about a well permit application.  But if they need a right of way across your land, or are putting a drill pad on your land, they'll contact you.  

Water is a real concern.  Get samples from any sources on your land, and get neighbors to get samples too, if you can.  Make sure that you can prove in court the authenticity of the sample.  Don't go out by yourself, fill up a milk jug, and stick it in the barn.  The best is to get an independent company to take samples.  I think the Office of Oil and Gas has a list of companies that do this.  If not, let me know and I'll track some down.

How far away the drilling/fracing fluids can migrate is not known.  The horizontal leg is often a mile long, and can be longer.  The cracks from the fracing process extend through the shale formation, which can be up to 200 feet thick.  The frac job is done thousands of feet underground.  What can't be accounted for are natural breaks in the otherwise impermeable rock formations that overlay the shale formation.  Test the water before any fracing is done anywhere within a few miles, just to be safe.

Comment by Lisa on September 20, 2012 at 1:21pm

Kyle,

Do you do any work in the Marion/Wetzel County area? I have no doubt we will be needing an O&G attorney before long. Once I dig through the courthouse and follow the deed/title trails, I will most likely need a professional to interpret it for us. We were lucky enough to buy a property right on the Marion/Wetzel county line. So, I will have double the legwork as I will have to pull all the info for both counties.

Comment by Lisa on September 20, 2012 at 1:00pm

Kyle, Thank you so much for all the info. I love tracing back in time so I will definitely try the courthouse search myself and I kind of figured this is what people would tell me. I was just hoping there was a website so I could do the search online as I am out of state most of the time. I guess I will do a two for one deal and search the "free gas rights" at the same time as I am searching the title/deed back into the past for mineral owners.

Do you know what the process is for the drilling? Meaning, does the gas company approach the mineral owners first, then once agreements are made, apply for permits and THEN, they contact the surface owners? I'm not sure how the whole drilling process works. My main concern in this whole thing is that my water is going to be destroyed. I have horses and cannot be without water for one day. My husband worked for 1 1/2 years on a drilling rig in the WV/PA area and he has seen some of the damage that is caused. With the fracking, how far from the drilling rig and the hole does the water get damaged? A mile, 5 miles, 10 miles???

We bought this property in January 2012 and have not moved there permanently and now I'm afraid to do so because of the water issue. One person is in the process of negotiating a contract with EQT and she said it states right in her contract that she should not drink the water or bath in it. They are planning on putting several wells on their property and they live 2/3 mile away from our new house. Way too close for comfort for me! I'm hearing they are coming in all around us in Mannington.

Thanks again!

Comment by Kyle Nuttall on September 19, 2012 at 1:07pm

The only way I know of to figure out who owns your minerals is to head down to the courthouse and research it.  The ladies in the record room are usually very helpful.  It will probably take a lot of time.  If that's not interesting, there are landmen and attorneys you can hire to do it.  Attorneys are more expensive, of course.  I'm both, and I recommend you give it a go on your own first, as it really is expensive to hire someone to do it.

There are a couple ways to check drilling activity in your area.  One is to go to the WV DEP website's map here http://tagis.dep.wv.gov/oog/.  The other is to get on the DEP mailing list for permit applications.  It takes some time to start getting info from them, as they have an approval process for it, but once you're on the list you'll get notification of every application made in whichever Counties you choose.

If gas rights were conveyed with the surface at one point, they should have continued.  I can imagine a couple ways free gas rights could be terminated, but termination is unusual.  Most likely, EQT is just trying to pull a fast one on you.  If you want to keep fighting them yourself, you're going to have to get all the documents in the chain of title clear back to when the free gas started so you see for yourself that the free gas has not been terminated in any of them.  Go to the courthouse and get a copy of each deed, will, or intestate proceeding that conveyed surface rights.  This is good to have, regardless of whether you're right or wrong about the free gas.  If free gas has been terminated, it will have to be stated in one of those documents.  Send copies to EQT, tell them you'll hire an attorney if they don't give you free gas, and give them a deadline to respond.  If they don't respond, hire an attorney to review the documents, tell you if you're right (you probably are), make a phone call, and follow it up by a letter.

 

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