Modern Exploration Inc

Landowners Page

Welcome to Modern Exploration, Inc.'s Landowners Page. 

We hope you enjoy your stay here. If you ever have a question, please call 903.893.1129.
Modern Exploration, Inc. has been in business since March 1977 and owns an office building located in Sherman, Texas named The Modern Building. Modern occupies 8,500 square feet of that building for its headquarters and donates auditorium and conference rooms to local charities for various events during the year.

Modern Exploration, Inc. is actively looking for leases to drill wells upon. If you think your property has oil and or gas please contact us. We have an excellent reputation with our landowners.

When we lease your land, we intend to drill a well on it. We do not buy leases to do any speculations. In other words, we do not buy leases and then make money by selling them to others. If we lease your land you can rest assured that we are planning to drill a well.

Modern has a very good reputation with environmental issues. That means a lot to landowners knowing that a company will leave their land in as good as or better condition than before the well was drilled. If you ever have a question about anything give us a call. We would love to hear from you.

This site is your site, so please let us know if you have a suggestion for improvements.

A Landowner's Guide to Oil and Gas Leasing


Oil and gas are valuable commodities. Their presence beneath your land could mean extra income if you choose to grant a lease to an exploration and production company. Exploration companies employ or contract with a professional called a "Landman" to acquire leases of mineral rights to land with potential reserves of oil and gas.
Not all Landman work for exploration companies. A Landman who has asked you to sign a lease that allows a company to drill on your property may have already approached you.
If you are approached, consider the offer, but remember to lease to a company that intends to drill a well. Some companies will "turn" (buying then reselling) a lease. Turning a lease will only make money for the companies. The way you make money is when a significant well is drilled on your lease. In any event make sure the lease protects your interests.

What is a Lease?

A lease is a legal document or contract between a landowner (lessor) and a company or individual (lessee) granting exploration and development rights to subsurface oil and gas deposits. Companies will usually present you with a preprinted or standard lease.
Review it very carefully. Negotiate changes to meet your needs and protect your interests before signing. Get all agreements and conditions in writing. Also, remember that you are granting a right to others, which may be viewed as an encumbrance on the property.

Key Components of a Lease

Cash Bonus - This is an up-front payment or bonus, which is generally computed on a per acre basis for signing the lease. While this money is important it is not as important as choosing a company that can drill you a productive well. A monthly check each month from royalties can be enormous and steady.

Primary Term - The number of years that a lease is in effect. It can be from one to ten years or more.

Secondary Term - The duration of a lease is extended beyond the primary term if a producing well is drilled on the lease or if the lease is "pooled" with other leases to form a "unit" for a producing well. The lease is "held by production" extending its duration and expires when production ceases.

Royalty - Your share of the production from beneath your property. This will be referred to in the lease as a fraction - usually 1/8 of the value of the oil and/or gas produced and sold.

Shut-in Royalty - Payment in lieu of a production royalty. Paid when a well is "shut-in" (capable of production, but not producing) for maintenance or other reasons.

Termination - Occurs when the primary term expires or when economic production ceases during the secondary term.

Drilling a Well 

Drilling will typically last approximately two to four weeks, depending upon many factors, including the depth of the well and the time of year. Deep gas well drilling may last two months.

Once an oil and gas company determines where to locate a proposed well, the company must obtain appropriate permits. Contractors will construct the access road and drilling pad to accommodate the drilling rig and other equipment. If the well is capable of production, most of the drilling site will be reclaimed within 45 days, depending on weather. It is important to choose a company that has a good reputation with landowners. Choose a company that has a good environmental record.

Wellhead assemblies, meters and various tanks will remain on-site, near the well location, for the life of the well. If the well is not completed or is no longer capable of production, state regulations require that a plugging permit be obtained and that the well be plugged, and the site reclaimed in accordance with the regulations.


The lease is a legal document and should be reviewed. Leasing provides you with revenues, but you should also make sure your interests and property are protected.

Oil & Natural Gas

For many years, natural gas was discarded as worthless. Even today, some countries (although not the United States) still get rid of it by burning it in giant flares, so large they can be seen from the Space Shuttle. Yet, it is one of the most valuable fuels we have.

Natural gas is made up mainly of a chemical called methane, a simple, compound that has a carbon atom surrounded by four hydrogen atoms. Methane is highly flammable and burns almost completely. There is no ash and very little air pollution.

Natural gas provides one-fifth of all the energy used in the United States. It is especially important in homes, where it supplies nearly half of all the energy used for cooking, heating, and for fueling other types of home appliances.

Because natural gas has no odor, gas companies add a chemical to it that smells a little like rotten eggs. The odor makes it easy to smell if there is a gas leak in your house.

Natural gas is, in many ways, the ideal fossil fuel. It is clean, easy to transport, and convenient to use. Industrial users use almost half of the gas produced in the U.S. A large portion is also used in homes for heating, lighting, and cooking. However, there are limits on how much natural gas we can find and get out of the ground with today's technologies.

Researchers are continuing to study about how natural gas was formed and where it has collected within the earth's crust. They have found that gas is not only found in pockets by itself but in many cases, with oil. Often, both oil and gas flow to the surface from the same underground formation.

Like oil production, some natural gas flows freely to wells because the natural pressure of the underground reservoir forces the gas through the reservoir rocks. These types of gas wells require only a “Christmas tree”, or a series of pipes and valves on the surface, to control the flow of gas.

Often, the flow of gas through a reservoir can be improved by creating tiny cracks in the rock, called "fractures," that serve as open pathways for the gas to flow. In a technique called "hydraulic fracturing," drillers force high-pressure fluids (like water) into a formation to crack the rock. A "propping agent", like sand or tiny glass beads, is added to the fluid to prop open the fractures when the pressure is decreased.

Natural gas can be found in a variety of different underground formations, including:

· shale formations,

· sandstone beds, and

· coal seams,

Some of these formations are more difficult and more expensive to produce than others, but they hold the potential for vastly increasing the nation's available gas supply.

The Department of Energy is funding research into how to obtain and use gas from these sources. Some of the work has been in Devonian shales, which are rock formations of organic rich clay where gas has been trapped. Dating back nearly 350 million years (to the Devonian Period), these black or brownish shales were formed from sediments deposited in the basins of inland seas during the erosion that formed the Appalachian Mountains.

The Devonian shale Formation gave birth to the natural gas industry in this country. The first commercial natural gas well was drilled into a shale formation in New York. It produced only a few thousand cubic feet of gas per day for 35 years, but it heralded a new energy source.

Other sources of gas include “tight sand lenses”. These deposits are called “tight” because the holes that hold the gas in the sandstone are very small. It is hard for the gas to flow through these tiny spaces. To get the gas out, drillers must first crack the dense rock structure to create ribbon-thin passageways through which the gas can flow.

Coalbed methane gas that is found in all coal deposits was once regarded as only a safety hazard to miners but now, due to research, is viewed as a valuable potential source of gas.

Scientists are studying another type of gas, called methane hydrates, found in deep ocean beds or in cold areas of the world, such as the North Slope of Alaska or Siberia in Russia. A methane hydrate is a tiny cage of ice, inside of which are trapped molecules of natural gas.

Research is also continuing on a theory that gas pockets that were not formed from decaying matter but were formed during the creation of the Earth may be found deep in the ground.

Once natural gas is produced from underground rock formations, it is sent by pipelines to storage facilities, then by smaller pipes to homes and factories.

So, the next time, you see the blue flame on top of the kitchen stove, remember that the natural gas that is being burned likely came from an underground rock formation hundreds if not thousands of miles away.
Squeezing Oil out of Rocks

Imagine trying to force oil through a rock. Can’t be done, you say?

Actually, it can.

In fact, oil droplets can squeeze through the tiny pores of underground rock on their own, pushed by the tremendous pressures that exist deep beneath the surface. How does this happen?

Imagine a balloon, blown up to its fullest. The air in the balloon is under pressure. It wants to get out. Stick a pin in the balloon and the air escapes with a bang!

Oil in a reservoir acts something like the air in a balloon. The pressure comes from millions of tons of rock lying on the oil and from the earth's natural heat that builds up in an oil reservoir and expands any gases that may be in the rock. The result is that when an oil well strikes an underground oil reservoir, the natural pressure is released - like the air escaping from a balloon. The pressure forces the oil through the rock and up the well to the surface.

If there are fractures in the reservoir (fractures are tiny cracks in the rock) the oil squeezes into them. If the fractures run in the right direction toward the oil well, they can act as tiny underground “pipelines” through which oil flows to a well.

Oil producers need to know a lot about an oil reservoir before they start drilling a lot of expensive wells. They need to know about the size and number of pores in a reservoir rock. They need to know how fast oil droplets will move through these pores. They need to know where the natural fractures are in a reservoir so that they know where to drill their wells.

Researching Property Ownership 

Step 1. Go to the courthouse or log-on to
Step 2. Go to tax rolls and research current taxpayer by:
1. Name
2. Address
3. Tax I. D. Number
4. Find taxpayer’s name, legal description, subdivision, survey name, etc…
Step 3.
1. Print out or write down names and legal descriptions from tax rolls.
2. Look at the names provided on the tax rolls and think of the different ways the County Clerk may have indexed the name. Bob Jones may be Robert Jones; or, R. E. Smith may be Robert Earl Smith, etc.
3. Look at the legal description and think of the different ways the County Clerk may have indexed the description. James Levy Addition could be indexed as the William White Survey, A-836 because the subdivision is in that survey.
Step 4. Go to Real Property/Official Records Grantee Index a/k/a Reverse Index or Indirect Index and enter correct names of the parties; Last Name/space/First Name or the name of the Company.

When researching Robert Jones start with JONES R; the result will be all filings with JONES where the letter R is the start of the first name; after eliminating those possibilities then search JONES ROBERT
When researching “Holder Machine Company” start with HOLDER M; the result will be all filings for “HOLDER MACHINE”. The word “machine” may have several abbreviations; “HOLDER MACHINE” may be indexed as HOLDER MACH.; HOLDER MCH.; HOLDER MA.; HOLDER MCN or may not be abbreviated at all.


Step 5. Look for document Type and Legal description of the name you are searching.
Types of Deeds and Abbreviations: 

WD - Warranty Deed
GWD - General Warranty Deed
TD - Trust or Trustee’s Deed
STD - Substitute Trustee’s Deed
QCD - Quit-Claim Deed
MD - Mineral Deed
ROW - Right of Way Deed
SD - Sheriff’s Deed
Correc - Correction Deed
Note: Abbreviations may be different in each county, so it is important to familiarize yourself with the abbreviations used in the county you are researching.

When researching ownerships and conveyances instruments you can disregard the following:
D/T - Deeds of Trust
NOTE - Note Payable
NOTICE - Notice (Tax Notice or other Notice)
RELEASE - Release
PTL RELEASE - Partial Release
FS - Financial Statement
MM or ML - Mechanic’s and Materialman’s Lien
AFFD - Affidavit
Note: Many documents filed in the County Clerk’s office do not relate to conveyance of real property, but these same documents may be used as a clue or shortcut for finding a deed.

Step 6. Confirm ownership of property by researching the name in Grantor a/k/a Direct Index. If the owner found in the Grantee Index is not shown conveying the property then they apparently still own the property.

Step 7. Order documents from
Step 8. Read document to determine:
1. Name of Grantor
2. Name of Grantee
3. Legal Descriptions
4. Date of Execution
5. Date of Filing
6. Confirm Document I. D. Number and/or Volume/Page
7. What is being conveyed?

Researching Liens, Judgments and Releases

Step 1. Go to the county clerk’s office or log-on to

There are two categories of liens: Voluntary and Involuntary Voluntary Liens are placed against a property or individual because the owner voluntarily pledged the real or personal property as consideration for a mortgage or for another obligation.

These include but are not limited to:
D/T - Deeds of Trust or Mortgage Lien
NOTE - Note Payable
M/M - Builder Liens and Mechanic’s Liens
CS - Contracts for Sale
UCC - UCC-1 Financing Statements 

Involuntary Liens & Judgments known as Adverse filings are placed against the property or individual when a borrower defaults on an obligation to pay a lender or governmental entity or because the party lost a lawsuit and the Plaintiff is giving notice to the public. 

These include but are not limited to:
T/L - Federal Tax Lien
STL - State Tax Lien
M/M - Mechanic’s and Materialmen’s Lien
A/J - Abstracts of Judgment 

Note: To effectively research liens it is important to familiarize yourself with the abbreviations in each county and to understand the definitions and terminology.

Step 2. Search the Real Property/Official Records Grantee Index a/k/a Reverse Index a/k/a Indirect Index and search the Grantor Index a/k/a Direct Index; enter the correct names of the parties; Last Name/space/First Name or the name of the Company.

Note: Voluntary Liens are typically filed in the Grantor Index and Involuntary Liens are usually filed in the Grantee index. The exceptions are Federal & State Tax Liens.
When researching Robert Jones start with JONES R; the result will be all filings with JONES where the letter R is the start of the first name; after eliminating those possibilities then search JONES ROBERT

When researching “Holder Machine Company” start with HOLDER M; the result will be all filings for “HOLDER MACHINE”. The word “machine” may have several abbreviations; “HOLDER MACHINE” may be indexed as HOLDER MACH.; HOLDER MCH.; HOLDER MA.; HOLDER MCN or may not be abbreviated at all


Step 3. Look for document Type and Names of the parties you are searching.
Note: If the Lien involves a specific piece of Real Property then it is likely the clerk will reference the property description on the indexed record. There are many documents filed in the County Clerk’s office that are not involved in a Lien or Judgment search. These documents may sometimes be used as a clue or as a shortcut for finding liens, judgments, or the party’s legal names.

Step 4. After determining that a lien was filed, look for the same parties in the Grantee Index to determine if a Release of the Lien or Release of Judgment has been filed.

Step 5. Search for any Extensions, Modifications or other agreements between the parties that may affect the lien status.

Step 6. Order document from

Step 7. Read the document to determine:

1. Name of Borrower or Taxpayer
2. Name of Lender or Governmental Entity
3. Legal Descriptions (if applicable)
4. Date of Execution
5. Date of Filing
6. Document I. D. Number and/or Volume &Page
7. Loan Amount or Amount Owed

Definitions to Documents Filed Within The County Clerk’s Office

ABSTRACT OF JUDGMENT - A public notice that a judgment against a person or company has been rendered in a court of law and that this judgment may be enforced against real property if the abstract of judgment is filed within the Real Property records. The abstract of Judgment gives a brief description of the monetary award rendered against the defendant of the case.

AFFIDAVIT - A sworn statement by someone or by several people swearing to a certain set of facts as indicated within the affidavit. The facts sworn to can either be a substantiation of some fact or a denial of something the affiant declares is not so.

AGREEMENT - An instrument filed in the Real Property records which is an agreement between two or more parties on a certain set of facts outlined within the document.

AMENDMENT - A filed document affecting a previously filed document on record. It is either changing the intent of the previously filed document or modifies certain aspects within it.

APPLICATION - An instrument applying for the achievement of some goal, i.e. an Assumed Name application or a Marriage License application. Its purpose will be found within the body of the application.

APPOINTMENT - An instrument filed in the Real Property records appointing an individual or a company to perform some task in behalf of another person or company. Generally, this is the appointment of a substitute trustee to handle the performance of a foreclosure of real property. The task to be performed will be found in the body of the document.

ASSIGNMENT - An instrument filed affecting a previously filed document by assigning the secured rights to a lien, mortgage, or security instrument to another party by the party which had the original interest in the note. It is the transfer of an interest in a bond, mortgage, lease or other instrument by writing.

ASSUMED NAME - An instrument filed by an individual or corporation establishing the fact that they are planning to do business in the county under the assumed name declared on the document. It is an instrument which is good for ten (10) years from the date of filing or a shorter period of time if stated within the certificate. This instrument is commonly referred to as a DBA.

AWARD - An instrument filed which lists an award granted to a party by a court of law or a governing body. It can be an award of property, or monetary value, etc. The award is listed in the body of the document.

BILL OF SALE - An instrument which indicates that one party sold an item of real or personal property to another party for some consideration, whether monetary or otherwise. A Bill of Sale can be filed in the Real Property records if it affects real property or can be filed in the Miscellaneous Personal records if it affects the sale of a business or some piece of personal property.

BOND - Many businesses and occupations are required to file a bond with the clerk’s office before engaging in public contact. Common types of bonds are: Public Official’s Bonds (including deputies), Specific Performance Bonds, Bonds to Pay Liens of Claim, Public Weigher’s Bonds, and Public Warehouseman’s Bonds. Public Official’s Bonds are instruments which guarantee the performance of their official duty. Specific Performance Bonds are instruments which guarantee that a specific and certain task or job will be performed. Bonds to Pay Liens and Claims are instruments which guarantee the payment of any liens or claims filed in specific instances explained and laid out within the document. Public Weigher’s Bonds found in the MPR records are instruments which guarantee the accurate performance of a public weigher. Public Warehouseman’s Bonds guarantee the correct performance of a public warehouseman for his duties while performing his job as a public warehouseman.

CONDOMINIUM DECLARATION - An instrument filed within the Condominium records which creates a condominium as such. It describes the condominium, names it, generally has a map of the condominium with it, and gives a declaration of the covenants and conditions of its use. Within the record it will generally state what the purpose of the condominium is, i.e. residential use, and will create by-laws under which the condominium’s governing body will act.

CONTRACT - An instrument between two parties for the agreement of something spelled out in the document. One party is agreeing to perform some duty or give something of his in return for some consideration whether it be monetary or by other means. A contract, if valid, is enforceable by a court of law. A common contract found in the records is a contract for improvement of real property where the contractor is agreeing to perform certain tasks, i.e. add a room to a house, in return for the payment of the work by the owner of the real estate.

DD214 - Commonly referred to as a military discharge, it is an instrument filed in the MPR records and is a brief description of an individual’s duties and awards while in the armed services. It gives the date and disposition of the individual’s discharge from the military.

DECLARATION - An instrument declaring a fact or set of facts. Example: the declaration of an Informal or common law marriage between man and wife.

DECREE - An instrument declaring a fact or set of facts. Example: the declaration of an Informal or common law marriage between man and wife.

DEDICATION - An instrument which dedicated something such as a road to the public or to an individual. These are usually dedications from a governing body for the use of public access, i.e. roads. But a dedication can affect many things besides public access and what is being dedicated will be found in the body of the document on file. Also, it is common to find dedications in the Map records, dedicating certain areas, such as roads and common areas to the public.

DEED - A written and filed instrument by which one party is transferring their rights of ownership in real estate to another.

DEED OF TRUST - An instrument by which the legal title to real property is placed in one or more trustees to secure the repayment of a sum of money owed to a person other than the trustee. It creates a lien against the property listed on the document, and is commonly referred to as a mortgage.

EASEMENT - An instrument which conveys the right of real estate from one party to another for their use and benefit. This is usually for the building or maintaining of roads, sewage lines, electrical lines, or other public or private utility used by the citizens of the county. This can include oil companies who have easements for the running of pipelines.

ELECTION CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTION AND EXPENDITURE REPORT - A report filed in the MPR records by an individual or his campaign treasurer declaring the itemized contributions he has received for the purpose of running for a county elected position. It also itemizes the expenditures incurred during the campaign.

EXTENSION - An instrument filed which extends the use of the previously filed instrument. Example: a creditor extending the amount of time and terms under which a debtor must pay his debt to the creditor. The extension granted in such a document will be listed in the body of the extension.

FEDERAL TAX LIEN - Filed by the Internal Revenue Service which creates a lien against any property the tax payer might or does own in the county in which the lien is filed. The lien is created because the tax payer did not pay any or all of his federal income tax.

FINANCIAL STATEMENT - This is a lien placed against either real or personal property. If the lien is placed against personal property or assets, the financial statement will be filed in the UCC records. The document will list the property on which the lien is placed. If the document affects real estate, then the financial statement will be filed in the Real Property records and will list the property which will have the lien against it. Financial statements are usually filed in the form of a UCC-1 listing the debtor’s name and the secured party’s name.

HOSPITAL LIEN - Filed in the MPR records which creates a lien against a person who has not paid any or all of the charges assessed him while receiving medical attention in a hospital.

INFORMAL MARRIAGE LICENSE - A marriage license created when a man and woman wish to declare that they are husband and wife and have been so since a date they name on the license. It is commonly referred to as a common law marriage, and it is recognized in the eyes of the law as a marriage even though no ceremony occurred.

JUDGMENT - An instrument indicating that a court of law has rendered a judgment against a certain party. The document will list what the court rendered and to whom.

LEASE - An instrument conveying the use of property from one party to another but does not convey the permanent use of it. The lease will indicate what is being conveyed, to whom and for how long. Example: An Oil and Gas Lease, leasing from the property owner to a party desiring to use the land or minerals in the land.

LIEN - An instrument placing legal claims upon property to satisfy a debt.

LIEN AFFIDAVIT - A sworn statement of claims against property by a person, firm, or corporation for the purpose of satisfying a debt owed to the affiant.

LIS PENDENS - A notice that a suit has been filed in a court of law and that property owned by the defendant may be liable to a judgment, and title to the property may be permanently affected.

MAP - A document filed in a separate record within the County Clerk’s Office and sets aside certain property within the county for certain purposes. Example: a map of a residential subdivision which gives the size and description of lots and blocks in a subdivision. When a map is filed in the office of the County Clerk the property on the map becomes a subdivision.
MARRIAGE LICENSE - A document declaring that two people applied for and received a marriage license and did in fact get married on the date and by the person indicated on the license.

MATERIALSMEN’S LIEN - A legal claim created on real property by a person, firm, or corporation for materials furnished for improvements to be made upon property.

MECHANIC’S LIEN - A lien created on real property by a person or contractor for labor performed in making improvements upon the property.

MEMO - A memorandum from some party stating facts. Example: in Real Property, a memorandum of lease.


MODIFICATION - An instrument which affects a previously filed document and modifies the terms of that document. Example: modifications to a Deed of Trust.

MORTGAGE - An instrument which places a lien on property for the repayment of a debt incurred by the property owner, usually for the purpose of buying the property. It is commonly referred to as a Deed of Trust, however, there is no trustee in a mortgage as there is in a Deed of Trust.

NOTICE - An instrument notifying either specific persons or the general public that something is either taking place, going to take place or giving notice of certain facts already in place.

OATH - An instrument indicating that a person is giving a statement in which they will perform certain duties or meet certain obligations. Example: the oath given by an elected official promising that he will carry out certain duties for which he was elected.

ORDER - An instrument, generally issued by a court of law or a governing body, ordering a particular party or agency to perform a certain act. Example: Commissioners Court ordering the setting aside of real property for the use of the county.

POWER OF ATTORNEY - An instrument giving power from one person or company to another person or company to act or perform certain things in behalf of the issuing person or company. Example: power of attorney for the buying and selling of real estate.

PROBATE - The disposition of one’s estate after they have died leaving a will. The will is filed in the Probate Department of the County Clerk’s Office and the disposition of the will is handled in the probate courts. A certified copy of the will and filings affecting the will, i.e. the inventory of the estate, are filed in the Real Property records by the attorney or by the beneficiaries of the estate.

PARTIAL RELEASE - An instrument affecting a previously filed lien releasing some part of the lien, either a monetary amount of the lien or some property originally incumbered with the lien when it was filed.

QUIT CLAIM DEED - An instrument conveying the title of real estate from one party, who is quitting any of their claim that they do or might have in real estate to another party.

RATIFICATION - An instrument filed by a party who is confirming certain items or facts, or by giving formal approval or sanction to an action. Example: a governing body, such as church elders, giving formal approval of certain actions taken by others, or proposed actions by others.

RELEASES - An instrument, which fully releases a previous encumbrance on real or personal property.

REINSTATEMENT AGREEMENT - An instrument which gives something back to a party who did or might have had something taken away. Example: when a person or property has been or was going to be foreclosed on and instead of foreclosing the parties came to an agreement and the debtor was reinstated with the property.

RESTRICTIONS - An instrument, filed in Real Property records which restricts pieces of real estate for certain purposes. The most common restrictions are residential restrictions which prohibit the property owners of the residential area from doing certain things, i.e. conducting business out of their homes. There are two (2) basic types of restrictions; Deed Restrictions and Subdivision Restrictions. Deed Restrictions are those which are put into the deed when the property is transferred from one party to another, restricting the new and any future owners from doing certain things on the real estate. Subdivision Restrictions are blanket restrictions filed by the developer of the subdivision prohibiting the new and future owners form certain things as indicated above.

REMOVAL - An instrument, which removes a person’s privileges, responsibilities, or duties to perform a certain act. Example: the removal of a trustee to act as a trustee under the provisions of a particular Deed of Trust.
REVOCATION - An instrument, which takes away certain powers or privileges of an individual who had been given certain, powers or privileges. Example: the revocation of power of attorney where the person who had previously been given power has had that power revoked by the party who originally gave him the power.

RIGHT OF WAY DEED - An instrument, which transfers the title of property to a party for the purpose of gaining access to property. A common right of way deed is granted to a governing body for the widening, construction and maintaining of a public road. Example: a right of way deed transferring property from one party to another for the purpose of gaining access to property where no access existed.

SMALL ESTATE AFFIDAVIT - A document, which originates within the probate courts. Its purpose is to distribute the assets of a deceased party, whose estate is valued at less than $50,000. The assets of the estate are listed within the affidavit and are distributed to the distributes named within the document. A small estate affidavit, after approval by the probate court judge must, by state statutes, be filed within the Real Property records. A small estate affidavit does not transfer the title to Real Property.

STATE TAX LIEN - Filed by the State of Texas to create a lien against any real estate that the person who the lien is filed against does or might own in the county in which the lien is filed. The lien exists because there was a failure of the taxpayer to pay all of his state, city or metropolitan transit authority sales taxes, or because he failed to pay in full his workman’s compensation tax.

SUBORDINATION AGREEMENT - An agreement between two parties, the debtor and the beneficiary of a new lien or a previously existing lien, which makes that lien secondary or inferior to another lien.

UNIFORM COMMERCIAL CODE - A secure financial transaction. Financial statements and other related statements filed with the Office of the Secretary of State and the county clerk. Example: mortgage, deed of trust, security agreement or other instrument executed to secure payment of a bond, note or other obligation.

WILL - An instrument created by an individual before his death directing how he wishes his estate to be divided after his death. For a will to take effect, the beneficiaries of the person’s estate, or someone representing an interest in his estate must file the will with the probate court’s division of the County Clerk’s Office. After it has been filed, the probate courts will take action on the distribution of the person’s estate, generally as he stated in the will.

WARRANTY DEED - An instrument conveying interest in real property from the grantor to the grantee, with the grantor warranting or guaranteeing the property against any person who may arise and give any claim to the real estate.

Definitions of Terms of a Lease

The legal instrument whereby oil, gas and mineral leases or overriding royalty interests are assigned/conveyed.

The person conveying oil, gas and mineral leases or an overriding royalty in an assignment.

The people to whom oil, gas and mineral leases or overriding royalties are assigned/conveyed.

Cash consideration paid to a landowner or mineral owner on the execution of an oil, gas or mineral lease.

Yearly payments paid during primary term to lessor to delay drilling.

A bank designated in an oil, gas and mineral lease to receive and distribute delay rentals.

A schedule of owners and their decimal share in revenues of the well, derived from the sale of oil or gas.

A person who grants or conveys land, minerals, etc.

The person receiving the grant of land, minerals, etc.

See Working Interest.

An agreement among owners describing how a well is to be operated.

The person who generally owns all or part of the minerals under his land and is entitled to lease the same.

See Participating Royalty. AKA Mineral Interest.

Generally, one who owns only minerals under a tract of land (but no surface) along with the right to execute a lease on the same.

Another name for an oil, gas and mineral lease.

The party who grants an oil, gas and mineral lease.

The purchaser of an oil, gas and mineral lease.

An owner's interest in the revenues of a well.

Share in well proceeds attributable to the working interest.

A working interest owner in a well, but not the operator.

A royalty interest which "participates" in any oil, gas or mineral found but does not "participate" in lease bonuses or rentals.

Normal occurring radioactive material. Can cause environmental concerns.

The agreement outlining the basic terms of developing lands or minerals such as royalty to be paid, length of time, and description of land.

Same as an oil, gas and mineral lease.

Same as joint operating agreement.

The costs associated with operating a well.

A working interest owner who is also the well operator.

The party designated in the operating agreement to conduct the operations of the well.

A royalty in excess of the royalty provided in the oil lease usually added on during an intervening assignment.

An oil and gas lease where rental payments are paid along with a bonus.

A royalty interest giving its owner the right to "participate" in bonuses received in leasing along with the right to "participate" in any oil or gas found.

The initial period in an oil and gas lease to develop the property.

A clause added to an oil lease to limit holding non-producing lands or depths beyond the primary term of lease.

Funds received from the production of oil or gas, free of costs, except taxes.

Stub attached to a check disclosing month of production, gas or oil, price received, and total volumes produced.

A well into which oil field salt water is disposed.

A tax due the state on oil or gas produced or "severed" from the earth.

Minerals whose title has been severed from the surface title.

An oil or gas well that is inactive.

Usually a landowner who owns no minerals under his land.

A mineral interest not subject to an oil lease.

Interest(s) in a well, which bears the drilling, and operating expenses.