We have 3 gas wells on our property in SE Ohio. 2 are maintained by B and E, the other by Enervest. Both leases expired upon my Mothers death in October, 2014. B and E continues to pay royalties but it's not much of course. Enervest will not pay royalties because we do not have a lease. I feel we have no negotiating power to consider tying ourselves to another lease. No royalties on the Enervest we'll have been paid since April, 2015. Not sure what to do about Ener est. any thoughts would be appreciated. Thnx

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If you could prove in court that the lease expired upon you're mothers death wouldn't you own the wells?

I would assume the operators would have to do something with the wells, dictated by the terms of the lease.  Plug them, remove them, just cease operating them, or maybe there is an option for them to be transferred to/purchased by the landowner.  I doubt they would just transfer automatically to the landowner, but who knows.  That lease does not sound very standard.

Hopefully oil and gas will go up. We have a history of good production. I know 1 of the B and are wells had to be capped because while the gas output was huge, the water could not be controlled so it was capped at a shallower level. That was in the 70s though.
I would think so. If it's producing I would think it would stay in production at least month to month without the lease, like B and E. Maybe they want us to sign on smtg new. Haven't heard anything back from them or my lawyer. I can't really afford more legal fees we're up to $3000 already with trust transference and of course dealing with Enervest etc. and royalties on the 2 wells is pathetic.
I think if I where you I'd do a little research and find myself a neutral lawyer in a neighboring county maybe to get a second opion.
I mean if you're local doctor told you that you had cancer wouldn't you want to go to a specialist to confirm the diagnosis?
Good point. My attorney in Marietta was recommended and supposed to be good but I've been unimpressed with his follow-up w/ Enervest on the situation (going on 16 mos.), his communication w/ me etc. It's just been a money pit w/ no revenue and no results. This is my 1st post on this forum. I'm frustrate and not sure where to go. Thank you.

Nowheregirl,

It would be nice if we could see the lease language, any way you could post it?

Without seeing the actual language of the lease any opinions posted are pure guesses.

Here are my guesses. Usually there are two terms to a lease a primary term and a secondary term. The primary term is for a period of time where the lease remains in force without any production from a well(s). The secondary term begins when there is production from a well(s) and continues as long as there is production.

For example, a lease may contain the following phraseology (or something similar) -  This lease will remain in force and effect for a term of [3] years (primary term) and as long thereafter as oil or gas produced (secondary term).

You state that there are producing wells on the property, this would mean that the lease remains in force (my guess). My guess is that the language referring to the death of your mother reffered to the primary term. Since the property is HBP that language is irrelevant.

Negotiating a new lease - if the current lease is an older one it's possible that there was no depth limitation or formation limitation in the lease. Therefore, you may not have the ability to negotiate a new lease.

As for Enervest not paying the royalty - the company may be aware of the death of your mother and is simply waiting for the probate process to be completed. At which time the company would need to be provided with the documents designating the new owner(s) of the royalties/mineral rights.

Everything I have stated above is based upon the limited information provided and is only an opinion/guess. Plus I am not an attorney. Hopefully you are dealing with qualified, skilled attorney to advise you.

Thnx for the reply. And Good points to look into. The leases have been transferred several times but it is my understanding that all are shallow depth leases. The history of the well transfers is about 2" thick, mostly handwritten. I had someone at the courthouse copy them for me many years ago. I will post what I have and reply to you. Thank you.

Just need the original lease, or addendum/modifications, assignments/transfer unnecessary.

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