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First Ohio Dormant Mineral Act Cases Argued Before State Supreme Court – Aug 2014

by Kenneth E. DuBose on August 26, 2014

The Ohio Supreme Court heard arguments for the first accepted cases surrounding the state’s Dormant Mineral Act, beginning in late August, 2014. The cases under review (Dodd v. Croskey and Chesapeake Exploration v. Buell) originated in Harrison County, OH, which sits atop the Utica Shale. Depending on the decisions handed down by the Supreme Court, severed mineral interests could revert to the current surface owner for the tract(s) of land in question in these cases.

Read More: “Lost My Mineral Rights to Surface Owner”

The Ohio Dormant Mineral Act (Ohio Rev. Code § 5301.56) took effect in 1989, but underwent a substantial revision in 2006. The law governs when surface owners may regain ownership of severed mineral interests beneath their property. In the event the surface land and the minerals are owned separately, the law says mineral interests are abandoned under certain circumstances. Currently, the law requires the landowner to notify the mineral owner of the intent to re-claim minerals before establishing ownership. Minerals are not considered abandoned if certain actions have taken by the mineral owner during the 20 year time frame before the required notification.

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