Mineral Rights Ownership: How Do I Know If I Own My Mineral Rights?

Mineral rights are valuable. If you suspect that your land may have precious minerals below the surface, then you may be able to financially benefit. If you have mineral rights ownership, then you can sell or lease them to an oil and gas company to begin the extraction process.

If you’re not sure whether or not you have mineral rights ownership, then there are a few simple steps you can take. Below, we will outline the most common ways to determine your mineral rights ownership.

Fee Simple Estates – Know What You Purchased

If you purchased your land in a fee simple estate, then you’re golden! A fee simple estate infers that you own everything from your subsurface rights to the air above your property. In the case of a fee simple estate, it is very likely that you own 100% of your mineral rights.

Split Estates – How to Find Mineral Rights Owners?

If you did not purchase your land in a fee simple estate, then your mineral rights may be owned by another person or entity. Check your deed in order to see if the mineral rights ownership is defined in the contract.

In most cases, this information is accurate, however, occasionally those trying to make a quick buck may neglect mineral rights transactions that happened decades ago. If your deed does not define your property’s mineral rights ownership, then there are a few things you can do in order to trace back the title. This includes:

  • Hiring a Title Company
  • Hiring a Lawyer
  • Going to your Town’s Deeds Office
  • Conducting Independent Research

If you are able to successfully determine that there are no other owners of your mineral rights, then you can officially claim them as your own. In some states, you may find that your property was once a split estate, but that the mineral rights have expired and reverted back to the land owner.

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