Real Estate

What is a surface estate?

By: Jordan HaddowUpdated: December 19, 2020


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    August 12, 2022
Surface estate means an estate in or ownership of the surface of a particular tract of land overlying the oil or gas leasehold being developed; and.

In this manner, what does it mean when seller retains mineral rights?

Hence, mineral rights. Also known as a mineral estate, mineral rights are just what their name implies: The right of the owner to utilize minerals found below the surface of property. Besides minerals, these rights can apply to oil and gas. Interestingly, mineral rights can be separate from actual land ownership.

Secondly, what is another word for mineral rights?

Owning mineral rights (often referred to as a "mineral interest" or a "mineral estate") gives the owner the right to exploit, mine, and/or produce any or all minerals they own.

How far down do surface rights go?

Most are half that or less at their deepest. At their structural top they routinely lie less than 50 feet deep. A very good portion begin within 20 feet of the surface.

Can you drill a water well without mineral rights?

Unless you also own the minerals under your land, that someone might have every right to start drilling. In the United States, mineral rights can be sold or conveyed separately from property rights.


What is the difference between surface and mineral rights?

In the United States, landowners possess both surface and mineral rights unless they choose to sell the mineral rights to someone else. Once mineral rights have been sold, the original owner retains only the rights to the land surface, while the second party may exploit the underground resources in any way they choose.

What happens if you don't own mineral rights?

Not owning the mineral rights to a parcel of land doesn't mean your property is worthless. If someone else owns the mineral rights and they sell those rights to an individual or corporation, you can still make a profit as the surface rights owner. You have the rights of ingress and egress.

What does subsurface rights mean in real estate?

Subsurface rights are rights to the earth below the land, and any substances found beneath the land's surface. Mineral rights are a type of subsurface right.

Is water considered a mineral in Texas?

Many landowners are surprised to know that groundwater is considered part of the surface estate, and not part of the mineral estate. Under Texas law, unless specified otherwise, the mineral estate consists only of oil, gas, uranium, sulfur and salt.

What is a surface waiver?

Summary. This Waiver of Surface Rights form is used to assure a landowner that an oil and gas company with rights as a lessee under an oil, gas, and mineral lease will not come onto the landowner's property for exploration and development purposes.

When subsurface rights are sold separately from surface rights?

Ownership rights in a parcel of real estate that are limited to the surface of the property and do not include the air above it (air rights) or the minerals below the surface (subsurface rights); surface rights can be sold separate from subsurface rights and air rights.

How do oil companies drill land?

Drop by the local courthouse where the land (real property) records are kept. That's where you'll find the landmen hanging out. They're doing research to find out who owns the mineral rights underneath the area in which their bosses (the oil companies) are interested in drilling.

What is a mineral title?

Mineral ownership. The legal possession and the right to win, work and recover specific minerals or resources from beneath the surface of a parcel of land. On this page: Ownership types.

What does having mineral rights mean?

A: Mineral rights are the legal rights to the minerals in a property. Whoever owns a property's mineral rights has full legal rights to mine for and profit from those minerals.

What is a surface right?

Surface rights refer to those ownership rights in a parcel of real estate that are limited to the surface. It does not include air rights or subsurface rights. The term 'surface rights' has a definite and well-understood meaning. It means the entire surface of the land, reserving the minerals to the grantor.

What is the accommodation doctrine?

The “accommodation doctrine” is a court-made doctrine relating to the mineral owner's right to use the surface estate to drill for and produce minerals. The doctrine requires a balancing of the interests of the surface and mineral owner.

What is surface rights in Texas?

Surface rights” refers to the right to control the surface of the land. Existing structures are included under this umbrella. Typically, when property is purchased, the transaction includes the surface and mineral rights.

How much are mineral rights in Texas?

As a general rule of thumb, the value will nearly always be less than $1,000/acre. In most cases, the mineral rights value in Texas for non-producing minerals will be $0 to $250. It really depends on how long ago you were leased or if you have current offers.