GHello we received an offer from swn on minerals they found that my great great grandfather purchased back around 1865.
Swn presented a lease offer and we countered after our oil and gas lawyer reviewed it. Swn said the terms looked good and agreed they could do it.
Here’s where things get weird. We didn’t hear back from them for months. Our lawyer finally got the landman and he said there was an issue with title.
The landman said they were going to lease with the surface owners.
I looked into the original contract and deed that was written over a hundred and fifty years ago.
Here’s how the original contract was written
" All the bituminous and cannel coal or shale ; together with all other minerals underlying or in the cannel coal or shale strata"
Now swn says that “all other minerals” creates an ambiguity and they will lease to the surface owners.
I did a lot of homework about mineral law in the state of Wv and their Supreme Court of appeals actually dealt with the specific wording “all other minerals” in detail. They ruled that it means oil and natural gas too.
How do I properly close this issue up to protect our mineral rights? Thank you for your time in advance.