Ohio Supreme Court Rules in Important Dormant Mineral Act Case

For several years MDN has been telling you about a thorny legal issue in Ohio, bubbling in the background–the Dormant Mineral Act (DMA). 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 both 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. There are a dozen cases sitting before the Ohio Supreme Court dealing with the DMA. Last December we gave you a run-down on four of the most important DMA cases before the Supremes (see 4 Important Dormant Mineral Act Cases with OH Supreme Court). One of those cases, Chesapeake v. Buell, was decided last week. It has big implications for both drillers and mineral rights owners…

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