County wide legal descriptions

An extremely important (my opinion) element in a sales transaction of mineral rights is the language used in a conveyance document, aka, a deed.

While it may be that this situation happens in multiple states, I know it happens often in Texas, and I believe this may have been through the courts already, and thus still allowed.

The “situation” is that of a buyer including “county wide” language in the legal description of what is being conveyed. The effect, often overlooked by a seller, is that in addition to any specific legal description of the lands being conveyed, the deed sweeps up and divests of any minerals the person may own in the entire county. You can only imagine that at times, this involves lots and lots of money. It’s a tragedy when this happens, and more so, often the seller is never the wiser. They don’t even know what happened to them.

Perhaps someone who knows how this is allowed to happen in TX can comment.

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You’re right, the wording of the legal description in a mineral deed can make a big difference. Beyond that “county wide” issue, where there is existing production whether the interest a seller conveys ends up being the mineral interest they own in a full tract, or just the royalty they own in a specific existing well, can come down to a few words.

In Texas case law there are also lots of examples of those same type unintended consequences related to land sales where seller’s intented to retain part of their mineral or royalty interest but the simply addition of the word “of” in a deed changed everything.

Before signing those type documents having them reviewed by an attorney who knows oil and gas and is representing your interest is worth the money.

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