Mineral rights

My mother and her siblings inherited some mineral rights from their father who died in 1998. Unfortunately he didn't mention this in his will and we were told by the Ward County clerk that they needed a certified copy of his probated will. His will was not probated because there was no contention and everything was in order. Before we go ahead and probate his will at a considerable cost we were wondering if it would be at all lucrative. The last time we were contacted was in 1999 by Mobil Exploration & Producing U.S. Inc regarding a seismic survey in Block 16 3-D. We also have another document regarding a lease in 1983. N/2 of Section 5 H & TC Blk. 33 if anyone can tell me what this might mean. See attached documents.

Thank you !


Dear Charlie,

My name is Chris, and I have inherited acres in Ward County. Let me show you the value of your land, when my grandmother and grand dad divorced in 1948, she got what she and he thought was a bad piece of land in Ward county. 640 acres and minerals.(Sec 8, Blk 33) In 1987, the oil company hit a Ellen-burger Formation oil play, these wells pushed her estate past his.

So before you go through probate, if I were you I would go to the county seat which is Monohans for Ward county, and look up the mineral deed for that property and then look to see if your Dad sold the land and minerals. Tricky but the folks there are real sweet and will help you. If in fact your mom and then you are entitled, I would seek out Attorney to help you to see all alternatives to prove you up. New Drilling is happening again in West Texas, do to price and new drilling techniques.

My Grand Fathers Mantra to his kids growing up, was Keep the Minerals and sell the land. So some of his wells were dug in 1923 and are still producing, and increasing thanks to the new drilling boom in west Texas.

Just recently myself I came across my Fathers will, and in it he left 1/9 share of 2000 acres in Presidio County, to my mom, but it's not her will either, so like you I'm on the hunt. That County has been slow to drill over the years, but it's a changing.

Continued Success in all your endeavors.

PS: You should go to Texas Unclaimed funds and see if your Father or Mom have any unclaimed Royalties.

I found $9000 in my Grandmothers name that was some 20 years old, that Bank Red missed.

C Wilson


I have inherited land in Ward County, the property has been in the family for over 100 years.

My first suggestion is to hire a Texas Attorney qualified in oil & gas law to assist you with your mineral rights; research the attorneys as you want one who has been in the oil and gas industry for many years. However do as much research on your own as it saves money. I also suggest you go look at your property so you have an idea of what you own, it all sage brush and Caliche.

The 1983 document represents a mineral lease for 80 acres to a company Hansen & Associates not an oil company. You need to read those documents to see how the property was leased.

The Mobil document you attatched indicates the Vaughan Family has a Trust for the property; '"The Vaughan Family Trust" the trust should spell out how the property is left to your family. the trust appears on the Mobil Exploration Letter dated 5/18/99 under the signature lines.

You need to locate the trust and read the document, see if it was filed in Ward County, Texas and go from there.

It maybe possible that you would need an abstract on the property to prove ownership, these can be costly

but worth it in today market place.

If you have files on the property you should put them in chronological order so you build a history and can find leases and other document.

It is important that ownership of land and minerals in Texas be included in wills to avoid probate in Texas, if the property is left in a TRUST it avoids probate in Texas. You can look up Texas law to find out what is required or use an attorney.

Chris gave you some very good ideas.


Mike East

Thanks for the info. I talked to a woman today at the Ward County Clerks office and she recommended that we either come down personally and look at the records or hire an attorney who can do it and is knowlegable in this area and can submit the proper documentation considering the fact that me grandfather did not mention the mineral rights in his will and the will was not probated in Pima County, Arizona. My next question would be if anybody could recommend an attorney in Ward County who we could contact ?

I would suggest Mr. Robert Scogin, Lawyer, P O Box 1197, Kermit, TX 79745 His physical address is

120 North Oak in Kermit, TX..Phone is 432-586-5871 FAX 432 586 3386. He knows Ward County.

Scogin is in his mid 70's and has been in the oil business his entire life, he is tough and the oil companies

do not like to do business with him because he looks out for your interest.

Scogin is old school, he does not do e-mail unless things have changed in his office. I did everything by letter or FAX as he did which in todays world can slow things down.

He may be able to refer you to a person who does the research at less than what an attorney charges. Start with Robert. Tell him I recommended him if you use his services.

I have other contacts but they are in Dallas.


I just wanted to second Mr. Robert Scogin's , Mike Attorney pick for you. Robert and his partner were my Grandfathers and Grandmothers attorneys. Highly praised for sure.

Good Luck on your journey, it will be worth it.



I think the best course of action here is to drive out to Monahans Texas and see exactly what is on file at the Ward County clerks office which we’ve decided to do. It should clear things up. Thanks again !

Chris Wilson said:


I just wanted to second Mr. Robert Scogin's , Mike Attorney pick for you. Robert and his partner were my Grandfathers and Grandmothers attorneys. Highly praised for sure.

Good Luck on your journey, it will be worth it.