Beware of a quid pro quo opportunity. Often, the mineral tenant requires the surface owner to do something that is not allowed in the rental agreement. For example, the oil and gas company may try to facilitate pipelines or facilitate the route through the property in order to obtain another leasing package. This is the ideal time to find a possible agreement on the use of the surface and look for favorable conditions. Be respectful and realistic. Because oil and gas companies are not required to sign a Surface Use Agreement, surface owners are not in a negotiating position. This is important when you talk to the company and ask questions. By respecting the company representative and realistic about the conditions that should be included, a surface owner is much more likely to get a surface use agreement. Respect legal restrictions when using. Although there are few legal restrictions on a mineral tenant`s right to use land, some protections should be known to the landowner.

First, the purchaser has the right to use only the amount of “reasonably necessary” surface land to produce oil and gas from that specific lease (or pool if pooling has occurred). If the use is greater than reasonably necessary (i.e. the owner uses water from your land to produce oil and gas on another unsurnated land), this is not permitted. Second, the hosting doctrine protects a surface owner with use of the existing surface in certain situations. More information can be found on this blog. Finally, the oil company has no right to be negligent, which means that it is subject to an appropriate operator standard. If any of these restrictions are violated, this may be a good opportunity for the surface owner to engage in a conversation about a surface-use agreement with the lessor, who would probably prefer to sign an agreement rather than face a dispute. Development is normally done within the so-called disturbance zone. The jamming area is the area of the landowner who is disturbed in the development of oil and gas. It is normally displayed on a map or drawing attached to the surface use agreement. The map or drawing generally indicates the location of well padding, access roads and other areas of equipment, building and equipment used in connection with well padding and wells drilled in the outage area.

Normally, the activities, facilities and equipment of the oil and gas company or operator are limited to the disturbance zone, so that the rest of the landowner can be used by the landowner.