THE FAMILY ESTATE SOLD PROPERTY IN KANSAS BUT RETAINED MINERAL RIGHTS, ACTIVE WELL ON SEC 17, BUT NOT OTHERS. PROPERTY OWNER NOW CLAIMS ABANDONMENT OF MINERAL RIGHTS IN SECTION 16 FOR 20 YEARS. WE HAVE PAID OIL TAXES AND WELL IS ACTIVE IN 17 DURING THIS TIME. SECTION 16 WELLS HAVE BEEN CAPPED AND DRY FOR OVER 20 YEARS.DO THEY HAVE LEGAL STANDING IN KANSAS TO TAKE THE MINERAL RIGHTS TO ANY SECTION OF THE PROPERTY THEY DEEM ABANDONED BECAUSE THEY OWN SURFACE RIGHTS?
Potentially.Two different properties - correct - 16 and 17?
THERE IS A 300 ACRE ESTATE THAT HAS BEEN IN MY FAMILY FOR 150 YEARS. 10 YEARS AGO ONE OF THE HEIRS FORCED A SALE OF THE PROPERTY. MY FAMILY ARE THE EXECUTORS AND RETAINED ALL MINERAL RIGHTS. THE NUMBER 16, 17 REFER TO PARCEL NUMBER OR SECTION NUMBER (MY POINT OF REFERNCE FOR THAT TERM IS LIMITED TO CA LAW..SO YOU MY HAVE A DIFFERENT TERM. I DO NOT HAVE THE PLOT MAP WITH ME WHICH MAY CLARIFY. IT HAS NOT BEEN SUBDIVIDED BY THE NEW OWNERS. IN CA THIS WOULD BE ONE PROERTY IF NOT SUBDIVIDED. THEY SEEM TO BE INTERESTED IN ABANDONMENT CLAIM TO SECTION 16, I FIND THIS ODD UNLESS THEY HAVE AQUIRED KNOWLEDGE NOT KNOWN TO US OR WANT TO TAP INTO ACTIVE WELL ON SECTION 17. THE ATTY FOR THE SURFACE OWNERS IS NOT CLEAR ABOUT THEIR MOTIVES BUT HIS DISTURBING UNPROFESSIONAL BEHAVIOUR MAKES ME VERY SUSPICIOUS OF HIS MOTIVES. IE, CACKLING ON PHONE. SO TWO SECTIONS OF ONE 300 ACRE ESTATE OTHER SECTION EXIST ON THE PROPERTY BUT DO NOT SEEM TO BE IN QUESTION. I AM SENDING THEM A LETTER OF INTENT TO RETAIN MINERAL RIGHTS.
The mineral rights have to have been abandoned for more than 20 years - if the property was only sold 10 years ago there is no issue - the mineral rights were not abandoned because not enough time has elapsed.
MY MISTAKE! THE PROPERTY WAS BOUGHT APPROX > 20 YEARS AGO, TIME FLYS, MY MOTHER INFORMED ME THIS OCCURED JUST PRIOR TO MY GRANDMOTHERS PASSING.
Then mineral rights can be abandoned.Kansas legislation provides for termination of a mineral interest upon nonuse and failure to record a statement of claim for 20 years. In addition, the property owner must serve notice on the mineral rights owner and publish, and the mineral rights owner has 60 days to record a statement of claim. A court proceeding is necessary to prove 20 Years of nonuse.
DO I FILE WITH THE COUNTY COURT HOUSE A STATEMENT OF CLAIM. DOES AN ATTY NEED TO FILE IT, DOES IT REQUIRE A SPECIAL FORM? WILL A LETTER OF INTENT TO RETAIN MINERAL RIGHTS TO THE ATTY INVOLVED HELP OR HURT OR PERHAPS EXTEND THE 60 DAY PERIOD?
Here are the statutes:55-1602: Same; lapse and reversion, when. An interest in coal, oil, gas or other minerals, if unused for a period of 20 years, shall lapse, unless a statement of claim is filed in accordance with K.S.A. 55-1604, and the ownership shall revert to the current surface owner.
History: L. 1983, ch. 185, § 2; July 1.
(b) Failure to file a statement of claim within the time prescribed by subsection (a) shall not cause a mineral interest to be extinguished if the owner of the mineral interest filed the statement of claim within 60 days after (1) publication of notice as prescribed by K.S.A. 55-1605, if such notice is published or (2) within 60 days after receiving actual knowledge that the mineral interest had lapsed, if such notice is not published.
History: L. 1983, ch. 185, § 4; July 1.
I would retain an attorney to file the statement of claim to make sure it's done correctly and filed correctly.
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