What To Do With Grandma’s Minerals?

 

You get contacted by a landman or an oil and gas company regarding a mineral interest your grandma owned in Oklahoma. You have been contacted as a possible heir to grandma’s estate. Grandma’s estate has not been through probate. The landman says you have to go through probate to get Grandma’s minerals interest out of grandma’s estate and to her heirs. 

First, Go Through Probate

During Probate, the court admits the will of the decedent, if there is one and determines how their estate should be distributed If the will is admitted to probate, the estate will be distributed accordingly. If there isn’t a will, the court will follow Oklahoma’s succession laws. 

If your loved one has passed, get in contact with a lawyer as soon as possible. Putting off this process will only make things more difficult for everyone involved. 

What Do I Do About Unclaimed Property? 

If there’s been oil and/or gas production on the property where Grandma’s minerals are, and the oil and gas company could not determine who were the rightful heirs or beneficiaries of grandma’s estate, the production revenue could have gone to the state. The Oklahoma State Treasurer holds unclaimed property for individuals. You can search for unclaimed property here.

To claim any unclaimed funds, you’re required to file a claim with the unclaimed property division and prove that you have a right to the funds. This is usually by producing a Final Order from the probate process. 

Wait, What If There Are Multiple Estates?

Things grow to be even more complicated if there are multiple estates with minerals involved. Numerous estates can come from a grandparent owning several estates or multiple family deaths happening in a similar timeframe. 

Take a deep breath. Oklahoma allows for there to be multiple estates handled in one case. Combining these cases will save you plenty of time, money, and worry.

How to Find the Right Attorney

For this situation, you will want an attorney that is familiar with the probate process and with oil and gas law. 

First, speak with an attorney you or your family member has worked with in the past. If your family member is the one who worked with them, make sure they still trust them to handle family affairs.

If you’re looking for someone new in the city, search for someone in the area by doing a quick Google search. If you’re outside of Oklahoma City, you’ll need to do some extra digging to find someone who can help.

During your consultation, ask how familiar they are with mineral rights in Oklahoma. Ask about success rates in the past, and read their former client reviews.

The attorneys at Robertson & Williams handle probates that include mineral interests on a regular basis. Check out the rest of our site for our services, and contact us to schedule a consultation.

 

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