Leases in Howard Co

We have 4 leases in Howard County. The wells operating in these leases are the Big El and The King. We inherited the leases from a death in 1998, however just found out about it a year ago. Laredo Petro currently has the leases. If there is activity, how do we find out who negotiated the leases, who has received the benefits since 1998, and are benefits due for that time frame?

Did the decedent have a will and was the will probated? If so, the executor can prepare and file in the deed records a deed from the estate to you. Then you can locate the operator of the wells on the Railroad Commission website (or by the sign at the entrance to the well) and send the operator a copy of the file marked deed and a W-9 so they can pay you royalties. If there was not a probated will, you may need to consult an attorney to start a proceeding to have the will declared a muniment of title, but these usually must be filed within 4 years of death. Finally, an attorney may be able to prepare and file an affidavit of heirship to vest title to the heirs defined by the intestacy statutes. It’s possible that royalties since the death are being held by the operator in a suspense account but they probably won’t talk to you about it until you have title in your name. Since we can’t give legal advice on the forum, you are going to need to have an attorney review your situation to determine what your options are.

All paperwork is done and in order. Our family has 1/3 of the leases. You would think after 22+ years, once all the information was completed, a check would be forthcoming, including for the past and current. Just wanted to see how you find out who had the leases prior to Laredo and if there are monies owed from those leases.

Thank you for all your help. You might try looking for leases using this link. You can also look on the Texas Treasurer’s unclaimed funds office.

You can go to the Railroad Commission website, go to online queries, go to production queries and put in the lease number. All operators since 1993 will be shown in the production records.Keep in mind that in many cases, the 4 year statute of limitations may apply and if so you won’t be able to collect royalties for more than 4 years in the past. An oil and gas attorney can look at your specific situation and tell you what limitations apply.

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