Anyone else not receiving a royalty check from Stat this month due to the fact that they have been over paid, or so Stat is claiming!  I called them and was told we will not receive another check as they have gone back as far as 2012 and we owe them money.  I am so sick of these gas companies and their claims!

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Hi Patty

It's not possible for me, a mere internet poster, to assess the truth (or otherwise) of Stat's claim that you were overpaid in the past.  I can tell you with certainty such things have been known to happen, and it is not necessarily true that Stat is cheating you.

Here are two options for you:

1.  If your lease provides for audit, you could hire the help necessary to audit Stat's records and books.  The objective would be to learn whether you actually owe them money.  Be on notice conducting such an audit likely would cost you a significant amount of money.  But you might be able to divide that cost up among other Lessors, e.g. your neighbors, in the same situation as you.

2.  Count your blessings.  Seriously.  If you really were overpaid Stat is treating you very kindly.  Here is why:

In the past, when Chesapeake overpaid, they took their Lessors to court to force immediate disgorgement of the overpayment.  They actually brought suit against their Lessors, instead of deducting the money owed from future royalties as Stat is doing.

Also, Patty:

You did not indicate in your post whether Stat is charging you interest on their money, now in your possession.  If not, you are enjoying an interest-free loan at their expense!  Where I come from, interest free loans are sweet.  They are "found money".  So things could be worse.  Just sayin'.

  Are these companies truly this inept when it comes to book keeping? Are their CEO's and CFO's so incompetent to the point that they can't properly manage their positions? Are they using theft to make up for their previously poor decisions? Mistakes are made by all of us, but isn't job performance, responsibility, and quality of work supposed to increase as you climb the ladder? Is it then any wonder many oil and gas companies are in financial difficulty presently? It seems quite sloppy at the least, and clearly corrupt at worst. Do they not have to provide extensive paperwork to prove their mistake before they withhold funds, or do they simply expect people to accept their word at face value? It is a very sad situation when a landowner has to deal with such sloppiness or potential thievery in their relationship with a company so personally connected to their property. Patty, I work for a living like many here, and money doesn't come easy. If I decide to hand money to someone, I expect to understand the reason even if I am not happy about it. That is my responsibility to my family and myself. If you can, talk to a good lawyer. Good luck.

I dont believe anything these gas companies tell me as far as that goes.  We are just supposed to take their word for it.  Going back as far as 2012 just doesnt seem right to me!  It  took that long to find a mistake, how incompetent are these people!  Someone else told me, who by the way owns quite a bit of land, they are doing the same to him and he will need to pay back quite a chunk unlike me with only 23 acres.  All I can say is good luck to all when they pull this on you.

Yes, speaking to a good lawyer is a must.  I would suggest finding a number of people who may be in the same situation.   This is a Stat oil mistake of serious proportion with incompetent employees and a terribly inadequate accounting system.   A bigger question is is this type of accounting problem an industry wide problem and if so more than individuals need to be doing oversight and remedy.  

I had a years worth of revisions and rebookings on my latest stat statement for 1 well.

the revision was due to a recalculation of my payment decimal, and resulted in a very large payment.

I'm guessing that next month they will pay me for another years worth of underpayments.

I guess it goes both ways.

wj

That is actually good to hear wj, and a good counter point to bring up. I hope that they don't "recalculate" again and realize that, "oops", a mistake was made again and you actually owe us money back -- and we want it now. If they are treating you fairly, that is terrific, and they should be applauded. Errors on both sides of what should be reality just seems to speak to a tendency toward inaccuracy and sloppiness that should make a landowner wary. A dollar to them could feel like a thousand to us. I wonder what percentage of inaccuracies end in favor of the landowner. It really doesn't seem that a correct, legal, and consistently accurate number should be that difficult to determine. It seems now that trust is becoming more and more of an issue with some companies. Companies that step over the line of fair practice are going to have lawyers constantly trying to shoulder them back within the line. That is just going to cost everyone unnecessary money and concern. I hope that quality companies with honest practices survive these tougher conditions, and then flourish. The dishonest people in some companies can do something else. Theft is theft. 

Yeah Jim, same with one of mine they revised from 6/2012 to 12/2014 resulting in a very large payment.

 They have changed their statement. It no longer has owner interest indicated, only royalty percentage and the volumes are greatly reduced leading me to believe that now the owner share of the unit is already factored in the lease gross volume.

The owner interest and production volumes both come from CHK. One possibility I see is the that unit acreage has changed. Any of you following my unit map changes know that they amend dozens of units every month and many of these are changes in unit acreage.

 

 The problem is they changed what they report on the royalty statement. The only show your royalty percentage not the owner interest. Supposedly your percentage share of the unit is already factored into the unit volume. So you have no way of knowing if they changed that percentage. Those numbers come from CHK so shouldn't their numbers change also?

I have gotten no checks for several months and no explanation at all. I continue to get checks from south western on the same acreage. I guess they just decided they can make more money by not writing royalty checks? Or did southwestern buy their share. No idea. This is in wv where southwestern bought out chesapeake's interests. Stat was a partner. Who knows. They do whatever they feel like and no one dare regulate them.

 They added 5.4% to the volume each month.

Yes.

Stat was paying me for "CIRCLE Z" well and I was not on that well pad. I notified them several times but it took 4 months for them to finally stop the payments made in error and now to hold due payments to catch up and correct the mistake. 

We just received a royalty check for Statoil for 10 times the amount we normally have received in the past 6 months.  Ex.  usually we get about $1000.00 per month.. This month we got $11,000.00 with no explanation, and just for the THALL 2H well... It was July 2012 to March 2013.  Did not receive the regular check yet.  Anyone know why Statoil would give that much back pay? And why does it take them 3 years to figure this out?  Happy but puzzled...

Barb in New Albany...

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