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Questions Answered by Aimee Hess
2 Answers | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: I am a creditor in an Chapter 11 Bankruptcy case . I inherited land which produces / pumps oil. This land was inherited

My question is. Can the Oil Company get out of paying my family it's Royalties?? There's millions owed to us. We are unsecured creditors. How can we become a ""Priority" in this case? Help... Court has been through a 3x's Arbitration(?) Final Hearing is set for Sept 10. All petitions must be in... Read more »

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Aug 23, 2019

In most cases, an oil company in bankruptcy must pay current royalties to its mineral owners with whom it has active oil and gas leases. Past royalties are often treated as claims against the bankruptcy estate. Whether the claim is secured or unsecured, or priority or nonpriority, depends on the... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: I own mineral rights in West Texas we least are mineral rights to oxy oil 2017 we still have not received any royalties

They started production in 2017

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jan 24, 2019

First, you will need to be sure that the production is actually production from your mineral interests. Your lease may have been limited to certain depths and so the fact that there is a well in your area or even on your land that is producing is not necessarily determinative. Secondly, if your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: A oil company has broken the contract that we all signed. how can i get them to hold up to the agreement?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jan 2, 2019

If an oil company has violated its agreement with you, it is possible that you can get a court order requiring them to fulfill their obligations under the contract. They may also be liable to you for damages. You will first need to have an oil and gas attorney review the contract and the facts that... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Gov & Administrative Law for New Jersey on
Q: My water service is not listed as regulated by the BPU. I am in the tears and they want 65% ($2000) by Monday or they

Are gonna shut my water off. I tried to tell them I don't have $2000 and offered the standard 25% by Monday plus a monthly payment to catch up and they said no. What can I do?

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Oct 15, 2018

I'm not sure what the BPU is. In Texas, if it is a rural water company, ask to see a copy of the company's tariff. The tariff will set out how they handle payments of deficiencies. If you disagree with the procedure, you can file a complaint with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality or the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas and Environmental for Texas on
Q: I am pretty sure a nearby company is polluting my well water. What are my next steps?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Oct 15, 2018

This is not something you can do on your own. You will need to contact an attorney who specializes in these kinds of claims. They will retain engineering experts to investigate the causal connection between the nearby company and your water well. The experts will test your water and attempt to... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Environmental, Personal Injury and Products Liability for Texas on
Q: How can I prove that my dad's cancer was caused by toxic waste dumps from a nearby oil factory?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Sep 23, 2018

You will need to contact an attorney who specializes in personal injury. They will retain a medical and other experts to investigate the causal connection between the waste and your father's cancer.

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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation and Contracts for Texas on
Q: My father is a fisherman affected by the BP oil spill. He doesn't speak almost any English (he's from Vietnam) but a BP

attorney got him to sign away his settlement rights. Is there a way to fight this?

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Sep 4, 2018

It difficult to void a signed document in Texas, but Texas does allow voiding a document in certain cases where the signature was obtained by fraud. In order to determine if fraud is present in your father's case, you and your father will need to consult with an attorney who will review all the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Would it be acceptable for us to record a "Memorandum of Option To Exercise Oil, Gas, & Mineral Lease?" Thanks!

We thought it would be best to get it on record, but wish to keep the terms confidential. What do you think?

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Aug 9, 2018

Filing a memorandum in the county deed records is certainly used to give notice of an agreement without disclosing the precise terms. However, before you do that, have an oil and gas attorney review the option itself, as well as take a look a Texas court decisions, to make sure you are not going to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Is it necessary to sign a W-9 form in order to transfer royalty from my deceased grand father's account?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Aug 8, 2018

Yes, the oil company is required to get a W-9 so they know how to report royalties to the IRS and also to you at the end of the year on a 1099.

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Are there any guidelines for recording an "Option To Exercise Oil, Gas, and Mineral Lease" in the state of Texas?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Aug 7, 2018

Texas county clerks required original , notarized signatures on the document and payment of the correct filing fee to file any document in the county deed records.

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Is it legal to put a wind turbine on the roof of a house?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Aug 5, 2018

Whether or not you can install a wind turbine on your house depends on a number of factors. You will need to have an attorney evaluate your particular circumstances to determine if the law allows it. Generally, your attorney would need to determine what municipal or county ordinances might apply... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Several years ago a petroleum company removed a pump that was partially on my father's land. Can we still seek damage
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jul 16, 2018

I assume you are asking whether you can recover damages to the land? Whether or not you can depends on a number of factors, such as how long ago the damage occurred, what kind of damage it is and the terms of any agreements between your father and the oil company. It is important to have an oil and... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Our mother made a deal leasing her rights, but she has early stage dementia, can we contest this?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jul 14, 2018

If your mother's dementia prevented her from understanding what she was signing, it may be possible to void the lease. You will need to seek the assistance of an attorney to evaluate the specifics of her situation and also a written opinion of a physician that she lacks mental capacity to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Does adverse possession include mineral rights underneath the land's surface?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jun 14, 2018

Adverse possession of the surface can include adverse possession of the mineral rights as long as the mineral rights have not been severed from the surface. Severance of minerals rights from the surface estate can occur in a number of ways, such as a lease of the minerals, a deed which reserves the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Do you need to get permission to install wind power on a privately owned farm?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on May 7, 2018

In most cases, yes, you need not only permission to install wind turbines on privately owned property, you must have a written agreement, usually in the form of a lease, which addresses the compensation to the landowner and other important issues.

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas and Probate for Texas on
Q: My mother had a interest in oil property in Oklahoma that was left to my brother and me. He is deceased. In a settlemet

With his daughter she is to receive any unclaimed property in Texas. I recently discovered unclaimed property in Oklahoma that is not included in the settlement Can I claim it.

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Apr 10, 2018

The answer is maybe. This is a case where the devil is in the details. The unclaimed property department of each state is separate from one another. However, you will still need to have an attorney review both the settlement agreement and any documents relevant to the Oklahoma oil property to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Bankruptcy and Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Chapter 11 bankruptcy after the final decree when do the creditor get paid for there proof of claim. This a oil and gas

This would be in reference to mineral interest and working interest disbursements. It is secured priority.

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Apr 6, 2018

In most cases, in a Chapter 11 "Debtor in Possession" proceeding, the debtor prepares and files a "Plan of Reorganization" that must be approved by the Court and certain creditors. In most cases that I have been involved with, the Plan will provide details on when creditors get paid. You can get a... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law, Energy, Oil and Gas and Probate for Texas on
Q: If my grandmother's name was forged on a document that cut her out of dividends from land (oil). What can be done?

My great-great-grandfather left his grandchildren land that Shell oil ended up digging and finding oil. My grandmother is one of his grandchildren. One of her first cousins who has since passed forged her and her sisters name on a document cutting them out from dividends from Shell. Her other... Read more »

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Mar 12, 2018

Your family's rights depends on what kind of document was signed and how long ago the forgery occurred. I assume the forged document was a deed. In Texas, a forged deed is void and does not pass title. However, there are statutes of limitation in Texas for asserting your rights. What statute of... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Can my neighbor sell his land to an energy company without my consent?
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Feb 23, 2018

In many cases, a neighbor can sell his or her land without your consent. Texas laws and the Constitution support the idea that people can buy and sell their property as they please. In some cases, there may be deed restrictions or restrictions in an owner's chain of title that can limit transfers.... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: When does the right to request a re-assignment terminate if the provision allows for them to exercise in perpetuity?

We have assignments of working interest that all include a re-assignment provision allowing the assignor, upon request, to be re-assigned his/her interest in all depths below 100’ below the deepest producing well. As of now, it looks like the deepest well is 10,571’. Our client wants to drill... Read more »

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Feb 15, 2018

It sounds like you have a valid concern here. However, in situations like this, the devil is in the details. In other words, an experienced oil and gas attorney would have to review those assignments and discuss the facts with you to be able to advise you appropriately. There may be common-law... Read more »

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