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Questions Answered by Aimee Hess
1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: My Father was contacted by East Texas land and Cattle out of Texas about a month ago regarding suspense account money..

Suspense account is for unclaimed oil money/mineral rights is in a deceased aunts name, dead since 1988. He said that my Dad and his siblings are heirs and he just sent my dad a consulting agreement that says Dad will pay this company 10% of the gross money recovered. There is a section called... Read more »

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Aug 7, 2020

You do not give the name of the company, but you are right to be wary of these come-ons. All the companies making these offers that I have run into are scams. You don't need to pay anyone to locate your aunt's mineral interests and get paid. First, go to the Texas Comptroller Website and... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Contracts and Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Someone contacted my Father and his siblings saying that there is a suspense account in the name of a deceased aunt

He said it was regarding royalties to mineral rights on land his grandfather owned with his siblings. Its ringing as a scam to me but there has to be some measure of truth to it im assuming since he seemed to have alot of personal information. How can I verify if this is legitimate? Especially if... Read more »

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jul 17, 2020

Yes, these are often scams. Often, the caller will offer to "help" you by purchasing the mineral interests for a fraction of their actual worth. Tell your father to ask the caller for the name of the oil company that has has these suspensed funds and then call the oil company and ask them... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: The beginning of May 2020 Van Tx hired a contractor to do was work in our backyard and they had hit a oil pipeline.

and a salt water line and it got in my garden and they are not making that right with me. Than last Friday 05/29/2020 Crossfire pipeline contractor came out to spread dirty and my back yard and they damaged our hard top that goes to our 1994 jeep wragner and they said they are not at fault I have... Read more »

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jun 8, 2020

One important thing is to document the damages with photos, which it sounds like you are doing. Next, get written estimates for repairs. Finally, send the city a certified letter with copies of the photos and repair estimates and request reimbursement. You should copy the city council person who... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Executor failed to include mineral rights in probate on Oklahoma county. I have copies showing he retained the mineral

Do I need to transfer to my name or us a copy of the land deed showing the retained mineral rights ok

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Jan 10, 2020

I am only licensed in Texas, but I suspect Oklahoma law may be similar to Texas law in this situation. If the executor of an estate has not included the mineral rights in a deed from the estate to the beneficiaries, and this violates the terms of the will, you need to seek legal assistance... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas on
Q: Is it legal for an oil company to take your entire revenue check (which is our sole income) with no warning?

Two years ago we, as royalty owners with Pioneer Natural Resources, sold a percent of our mineral interest in Upton County to OneMap Mineral Services LLC. All Division Orders were signed by all parties and money exchanged hands. But apparently Pioneer dropped the ball and mishandled some of the... Read more »

Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess answered on Dec 9, 2019

This is certainly an unfortunate situation. Whether or not Pioneer is allowed to withhold all royalty due to you depends on the language of the most recent division order for these royalties that you signed, as well as the terms of the oil and gas lease that you or your predecessor in interest... Read more »

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... 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... 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... 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.

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