Some Facts about Selling Your Mineral Rights

Jun 04

A landsman trying to get you to lease out or sell mineral rights to your land may have approached you at some point. You are interested in selling your mineral rights, but you are not exactly sure what they are and if own them. Here are some facts for you.

Mineral rights or property is the area beneath the surface land that may or may not contain substances that has market value. It could be gold, silver or copper; it could be uranium or talc; it could be oil, gas, or coal. It could be nothing at all. If your mineral rights are in a good area, you could sell them for a good price even if later it turns out it does not have any minerals at all.

Ownership of mineral rights is not always straightforward. One person could own the surface as well as mineral rights; in some cases, there are separate owners. In other cases, the mineral rights may not march alongside the surface land.

The type of mineral can also affect the scope of ownership. Hard rock minerals are static; they stay in one place with respect to the surface. There may be disputes when two owners share the hard rock, but that is usually easily to resolve. Mineral rights are just like real estate property, so resolving disputes follow the same rules.

However, hydrocarbons are not so sedentary, with the exception of coal. Gas and oil move under the surface, so it can be difficult to establish who owns the extracted gas or oil. In most cases, the rules of capture applies. This means that whoever extracts it can own it. However, if there is already a claim for a specific area prior to extraction, then this defines the parameters of the rights. This is why it is important to know what minerals might be lurking under the surface. If you have oil or gas under there, you should make a claim right away so no one else can extract it.

Selling your mineral rights can be a complicated business. It may be better to leave it to a reputal mineral auction company that will help you establish your ownership, the right price for your rights, and the right buyers.

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