When you own mineral rights, the first thing you should do is create an estate plan or add them to your existing estate plan. However, if a situation of joint ownership is present, then the deed will determine the ownership in the event of death, regardless of what information is present in a Will. Knowing how mineral rights work is important to ensure your rights get transferred in a way that meets your wishes if the unexpected happens. Here are some important factors to consider when creating or updating your estate plan.
Understanding Deeds of Ownership
Deeds of ownership with oil and gas minerals can be complicated and full of legal language to sort out. Many people don’t have clear-cut and obvious situations that make the deed easy to sort out. For example, having multiple children, more than one marriage, joint ownership with a sibling or other factors may present some complications when estate planning. You may want your oil and gas minerals to be passed on to your child, but a Will alone cannot change the ownership found in a deed.
Transferring Mineral Rights To The Next Generation
Throughout the process of learning how mineral rights work, you may be presented with an opportunity to create a life estate to make transferring the rights a seamless process after death. With this in place, you can retain mineral rights throughout your life, while already having your heirs appointed as the owners upon your death. There are different stipulations that may be present, but most of the time with a life estate in place, the only downfall for you is not having the ability to sell your rights. If this isn’t your intention anyway, then the process should be simple and straightforward.
Work With A Good Lawyer For Estate Planning
A good lawyer can explain how mineral rights work so you can transfer your rights down to the next generation without placing a significant burden on them. Taxes and paperwork are inevitable with any mineral rights deal and transfer, but getting the estate planning done prior to the owner’s death will make the process much easier for everyone involved.
At Eckard Land and Acquisition, we help investors answer all of their questions about mineral rights deals. One of the most common questions we hear is “can I retain mineral rights all the way until my death?” The truth is every mineral rights deal and transaction is unique, so we have to evaluate the language in the deed thoroughly to ensure all of your wishes are granted. Feel free to contact us at any time if you have any concerns about how your mineral rights may impact your estate planning.