Received Oill & Gas Lease for Mineral Rights I did not know that I owned

Last week I was contacted by John H. Linton of LoneTreeEnergy & Associates about a 3 year lease which they would like me to sign for the mineral rights on a property that my adopted parents once owned. They claim that I have 8.3 acres of mineral rights to a piece of property just east of Cheyenne Wyoming which transferred to me when my adopted mother passed away in the early 1970's. I found this site and was able to glean some generic information about leases, but still have many questions. I've sent a few to Mr. Linton, but I don't know him, his company. I believe he said that he is brokering this deal for EOG Resources, Inc., so I am sure that he has his and their interest well ahead of mine. So I wanted to ask some questions from some knowledgeable people who don't have a vested interest in the outcome of this lease. Thank you for sharing any time that you can.

I do not know who might own the surface rights to this area, but I really doubt that it is me. I live and work in Indiana and can't travel to the Cheyenne Assessors office to determine who might control the surface rights. I would also like to verify that I actually do have the mineral rights before signing any sort of lease. Is there any way for me to find this information out without making a trip to Cheyenne?

The lease itself looks to be rather generic. From your Mineral Help area, I was able to spot many of the items that were discussed and know that I need some legal assistance before signing this lease. I have contacted a local attorney who deals with business contracts, but not Gas and Oil leases specifically. They haven't responded back, so I am taking that as a hint that they don't feel qualified to handle the issue. Should I seek out some legal representation in Cheyenne to handle this? I really don't want to spend any more money than I have to, but a small investment now might make a big difference in the future.

Any other information or advice would greatly be accepted.

I'm a West Virginia attorney, and I do a bunch of oil and gas work here. I don't know anything about Wyoming law, and while you can learn a lot here it's going to take you so long that it probably won't be worth your time. You'll also probably miss something important. You also might not be able to figure out the right value to place on the minerals with the information here. I don't know any attorneys in Wyoming, so I can't make any recommendations, but I strongly encourage you to find a lawyer out there who does oil and gas work (for whom it's not just a bullet point on their web site) and hire them.

Good luck. 8.3 acres would be a really nice payday if it was here in West Virginia. I rather suspect it's worth a pretty good amount in Wyoming.

Thanks for your response. Will be looking for some assistance in Wyoming to just get my feet under me.