Chattanooga, TN asked in Energy, Oil and Gas for Texas

Q: How do I begin fighting a law suit over mineral rights for which I'm a long lost relative of the owner in TX?

Myself and several relatives who are the long lost heirs of mineral rights to some property in Texas. We are now being sued over that property. I have no idea how to begin going about dealing with this issue.

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2 Lawyer Answers
Aimee Hess
Aimee Hess
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Energy, Oil & Gas Law Lawyer
  • Streetman, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: It is essential that you retain an attorney to represent you. There are some things you can handle yourself, but litigation is definitely not one of them. Justia has a good search engine (Find A Lawyer) that will assist you in finding a civil litigation attorney in or near the county where this litigation is pending. You can also check lawyers.com and Martindale.com. Please do not delay because there are very strict time limits in answering lawsuits and if you miss the time limits, a default judgment can be taken against you.

James Tack Jr agrees with this answer

James Tack Jr
James Tack Jr
Answered
  • Energy, Oil & Gas Law Lawyer
  • Oklahoma City, OK
  • Licensed in Texas

A: Quiet title suits can involve a variety of issues. Sometimes they are quite complex. You may have valid defenses to the suit or the suit may have been filed to clear up some ambiguity or inconsistency in the record title. The suit may be establishing the interest of all of the heirs or may be a suit to exclude certain persons from ownership. It is important to determine the size of your interest and what it is worth. When mineral interests are passed down from generation to generation they can become so split up that they have a relatively small value. If a number of the heirs are in the same legal position it can make economic sense to hire the same attorney. You should contact an oil and gas attorney licensed to practice in Texas to review the suit and any supporting documents you have supporting your ownership.

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