Should You Sell or Lease Mineral Rights on Your Land – It’s a Big Question Where Some Professional Input Can Help

August 27, 2012

Oil and Gas Leases

Ohio mineral rightsShould an Ohio landowner sell his or her mineral rights or is it more beneficial to lease them?

The term “mineral rights” refers to ownership of minerals, such as oil and natural gas which are beneath the ground.  There are also “surface rights” to land which are a different type of rights to land.  In Ohio and some other states, there are reservoirs of these naturally occurring minerals under the land and the “rights” often come into question.

If a person owns mineral rights to land, he has several options.  He or she can sell the rights, or lease the rights to any subsurface minerals.  If the Ohio landowner leases, the mining company usually pays an initial fee to enter the property, then pays the landowner a percentage of production profits.

If the landowner holds fee simple title to the land, the most common title to land held in the United States, the owner has the right to lease, sell or giftany part of the land and any minerals below it.  Mineral lease agreements could result in thousands of dollars an acre in royalties, while a mineral rights purchase could result in forfeit of royalties, and likely will if the land was profitable to begin with.

In acquiring mineral rights, the purchasing company benefits from any prior negotiations made under a previous lease.

Many people are not familiar with their mineral rights and may not even know they have beneath-the-ground titleIf they sign a lease for the mineral rights, or sell the mineral rights, they may not understand what they are signing and how they could potentially lose a great deal of money.  In some instances, it is possible to buy back mineral rights, but 30-day public notice must be given, and it must be more than 20 years since the original mineral rights sale was executed.

It is advisable to have an experienced Ohio Oil and Gas Lawyer review any lease before you sign it.  Please contact Slater & Zurz, LLP by calling 1-800-297-9191 for a free consultation, or send us a Blog Message to set up a time to discuss and evaluate your rights.  We want to make sure you get everything out of your property that you deserve.

To learn more about mineral rights and oil and gas leases, please visit

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About slaterzurz

Slater & Zurz LLP is an Ohio law firm of highly experienced and respected attorneys. Over the last 40 years, we have developed a reputation for getting positive results for clients. We've been trusted with handling over 20,000 personal injury cases and our clients have received more than $120,000,000.

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