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National Association of Royalty Owners

The Only National Organization Representing Oil & Gas Royalty Owners Interest

What is a Mineral Owner?

There are four kinds of ownership you might see on documents.  It is important to know what kind of owner you are before you make any decisions.

A Mineral Owner, is an individual who is entitled to receive monthly or annual royalty income from operators producing crude oil, natural gas because they actually own the mineral property, not to be confused with the "Surface" property.  The mineral property is under the surface.

Mineral interest is a property interest that is created when the sale of minerals such as hydrocarbons is executed by the mineral deed or an oil and gas lease. The owners mentioned on such deeds are mineral interest owners. However, since these owners do not have expertise of exploring minerals themselves, they can lend their mineral ownership rights to oil operators (oil companies).

How much of my mother's original property do I own, if it was split among several family members when she inherited it? Click Here.

My lease was sold! Can they do that without asking me?

Yes, it is very common that leases are sold from company to company.  The mineral owner has no say in this transaction.  The new owner of your lease should notify you they are your new operator, and will send you paperwork to get you in their accounting system to be paid.  If you think your lease was sold or your operator was acquired you can look at the NADOA, (National Association of Division Order Analysts) book of mergers and acquisitions for owner relations contact information. (This is available to NADOA members.)

I want to get rid of these minerals, what are my options?

  • You can sell them.  The value of mineral property depends on many things, including but not limited to royalty income (past and anticipated future), industry movement in the county, the size of your property and finding the right buyer.
  • You can donate them.  Non profit organizations (hospitals, universities, school districts, churches, health organizations etc) accept mineral property donations.  The NARO Foundation also is a 501(c) 3 non profit which accepts these donations.  
  • You can gift them. Consider gifting them to a family member who already owns property in that unit, or gift them to the next generation so they are learn about domestic energy production.
Where can I find information about what is happening in  my area right now?  

Visit our message board, click here.  It is free to join, and open to the public to read.

How do I know what I own?  The paperwork!

    • A Division Order

      A Division Order is a document which lays out the proportional ownership in produced hydrocarbons, including crude oil, natural gas, and NGL’s (mineral property). Sometimes the Division Order is referred to as a division of interest. More often than not, a single well or lease will have multiple owners.

      The division order is sent from the operating company to the mineral owner The company will request the mineral owner sign the Division Order and return it.  In Texas a signed Division Order is required before the company can issue royalty payment. If you have a Division Order, even an old one, it will be useful in knowing what you own. If you are sent a Division Order to be signed KEEP A COPY of what you send them for your records.
      • A copy of the deed
        A mineral deed is like a surface deed.  It shows ownership of the property.  A mineral deed is different from a mineral lease, in which a lessee has to engage in developmental activities and production of oil and gas has to be done during the lease period. In a mineral deed development may or may not take place. It has no relevance with regard to an owner who conveys the title.  Deeds are written and arranged in a variety of different ways. Some are very specific, and others can be very vague. This presents challenges to mineral owners once they start reading the deed
        Mineral deeds
        are public documents available in the court house in the country where the minerals are located. 
        ---Check online to see if your the court house in that county has online documents. If they don't, call the court clerk for information on how you can get a copy of your paperwork.
      • A copy of the lease
        Mineral leases are agreements between property owners and others that provide authorization to look for and remove minerals from specified sections of land. The terms of the lease may grant the right to explore and harvest minerals for an indefinite period of time, or grant the privilege for a time frame that carries specific starting and ending dates.
        A copy of the lease will have been filed in the  court house in the country where the minerals are located.  ---Check online to see if your the court house in that county has online documents. If they don't, call the court clerk for information on how you can get a copy of your paperwork.
      • Letters from the company (or a past company)
        Letters from the operator might contain a land description, or other useful information about the property that would not have changed over time.
          The "Owner Number" in a letter is simply the account number with that operator and is not useful outside that company's system.  The "API" number is like a social security number for a well-- it is very useful!  Wells and units are typically named, that will also be useful and will not change if you can find it on documents left to you.

      I need more help!
      Call us 918-794-1660

      Why should I join NARO? Click here. NARO is the only national organization representing, solely and without compromise, oil and gas mineral property owners' interests.  We are glad to assist anyone, however membership funds keep our mission alive.  Please join us, more info here.

      What is an oil and gas lease?

      Oil And Gas Lease is an agreement between two parties (the mineral owner and an oil and gas operator (or oil company) to allow oil and gas exploration and a production organization (a Lessee) along with the crew and drilling equipment to access the property and minerals which a Lessor owns. An Oil And Gas Lease can also be defined as an area of land allotted to an Exploration and Production organization for drilling activities. The piece of land is usually spread in large acres.

      What if my lease terms are being violated by the operating company?

      An oil and gas lease is a private business contract.  If you feel the company you have contracted with has violated the terms of this agreement your recourse is through the legal channels.  The state regulating agency, the local police, related associations (like NADOA, AAPL, OGCC etc) cannot generally help, you need to consult an oil and gas attorney.  In some instances, if a state statute is being violated the State Attorney's General can assist.

      What if I can't get my operator to call me back?

      This can be very frustrating. If you have a request for your operator and are having trouble getting a reply, send your request in writing, via certified mail. Emails and phone calls are not considered "Official" correspondence.

      How does someone become a Certified Mineral Manager? Our Foundations administers this certification.  Click the logo to learn more.

      I need basic mineral management information!  Visit our Facebook Page

      State regulatory agencies serve their citizens by... 
      • stewardship of natural resources and the environment;
      • concern for personal and community safety; and
      • support of enhanced development and economic vitality for the benefit of their citizens.
      State regulatory agencies do not..
      • Fight private legal battles or contact operators on behalf of mineral owners
      • House deeds, leases or other such documents (Those are in the courthouse!)
      • have anything to do with a royalty payment.

      What is my state regulatory agency?Click here to find out and learn what resources they offer mineral owners.

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