Video: OH Lawyers Explain Dormant Minerals Act & Impact on Utica

An issue MDN has not previously tackled (until now) that is coming to the fore in Ohio is “the Dormant Minerals Right Act” (DMA) in that state. In a nutshell, there are two DMAs in Ohio–one passed in 1989 that went into effect in 1992, and another in 2006 which added certain additional procedural requirements to the 1989 version. The DMA in its various versions provides for mineral rights that had previously been separated from surface rights to transfer to the surface owner under certain conditions. The problem–for drillers and for landowners in Ohio–is in knowing which set of DMA rules to use (1989 or 2006) in determining who owns the mineral rights. It’s a big problem when drillers are spending sometimes up to $10,000-$12,000 per acre in lease bonuses–to say nothing of where to send the royalty check. Some drillers are holding back on leasing because of this issue. A case now sits with the Ohio Supreme Court, Walker v Noon, that will sort out these important issues. The very sharp lawyers at Ohio law firm Bricker & Eckler have done a masterful job of explaining the case before the Supreme Court, a case brought by their firm…

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