I just found this site and I am located in TN. I have been looking over the mineral interest of a land company who has o&g activity in Putnam, Morgan, Fentress, White and Scott Counties. There have been several leases on the properties over the years and several operators, some of which are no longer around. That being said there has been quite a mess left to be cleaned up and several questions along the way. Some of the old operators that are still around try to bully new comers and make their own rules. I am fairly will informed as to what o&g laws and regs that exist in TN and what the State Super of this field expects. TN is way behind other states in this area so there is alot of "gray area" that no one has the answers to. I am also aware that what is in the Lease would apply as well. I have already learned alot but I need to ask a big question that noone really has a straight answer for.
1. Old non-producing wells (what I would call "Abandoned")-Who is responsable for the well and who has the interest in the well? Some oil guys say they have all the rights even after their lease dies. The State says operator has the responsability of the well (environmental damages that may or may not arise) and to plug the well and the mineral rights revert back to the owner, not the operator (the operator losses all right to the minerals. As I understand it once a lease expires, per its terms, all assignments expire with the lease (example: If 15% ORI is assigned to John Boy and 50% WI is assigned to Jim Bob and Joe Blow is holding the lease and fails to send in the AMR for the year and was givin written notice of failure and still not pay it then the lease expires along with John Boy's and Jim Bob's Interest).
All comments and remark will be helpfull.
I am also looking for other TN Royalty Owners. Thanks.