Who get's what in Texas? Please help

I have inherited some Mineral interests in Texas from our late Father (first wife deceased). Landmen are interested in the tracts and we are close to striking a lease deal but have some questions about the entitlement of any proceeds from the land.

Prior to his marriage my Father had a Texan will in place leaving the Mineral rights to me. An English will was also in place but under English law all existing wills are revoked upon marriage.

A new English will was prepared after the marriage but the Mineral interests in Texas were not mentioned as it was thought at that time that the rights were valueless! According to this will, the residuary of my Father’s estate is currently held in trust whereby the wife gets the income for lifetime and the capital is passed to me upon her death.

So the questions are…

Does Texan law have a Civil element whereby I would have entrenched rights as an heir and would be entitled to the mineral rights irrespective of the provision of the English Will?

Is my Father’s English will recognised under Texan law as taking priority over both the earlier Texan will and over any Texan forced heirship rights?

Are there any specific rules in Texan law allocating mineral royalties between income & capital?

I really hope someone can help me with this. If there was a definitive position, my life would be just SOOOOO much easier.

Thanks alot

Hi Penster -

It may be that until either Certified (recordable) copies of the English Court proceeding are filed in the Texas County(ies) where the mineral interests are located or perhaps Ancillary Proceedings are had in the Texas County(ies) where the properties are located, that the properties would be subject to Texas Probate Law regarding intestate succession (as if there were no Will at all) and pass forward accordingly.

But that's all really just for conversation, because I'm honestly not clear on the subject of foreign Wills.

It sounds to me that you need to discuss this with a qualified Texas Oil and Gas Attorney (Solicitor to you, Mate).

There are a great many very qualified Attorneys in the State of Texas, any number of which could assist you. But I have worked with Bernard Athey (pronounced "Bernurd") on a matter or two over the years and would advise you to contact him (see the attached).

There would be no renumeration for me should you contract him to assist you in your efforts - I just know him to be quite capable.

Hope this helps - My very best to The Queen!


Charles Emery Tooke III

Certified Professional Landman

Fort Worth, Texas


713-408-2850 Cell

2989-BERNARDATHEY.pdf (72.6 KB)

I recommend hiring an attorney to advise you in this matter. The law in Texas governing intestate decedents prevails until such time as a Last Will and Testament of a decedent is subject to Probate proceedings. if the Last Will and Testament of the decedent naming you as beneficiary is accepted for Probate in Texas, then that Last Will and Testament will prevail over a will accepted in some other country or venue.