California Laws - Civil Code
EFFECT OF THE 1872 CODES (23-23.6)
DIVISION 2. PROPERTY

CHAPTER 3. MINERAL RIGHTS (2218)(1-click HTML)
Article 1. General Provisions (883.110-883.140) (2219)(1-click HTML)

883.110. As used in this chapter, "mineral right" means an interest in minerals, regardless of character, whether fugacious or nonfugacious, organic or inorganic, that is created by grant or reservation, regardless of form, whether a fee or lesser interest, mineral, royalty, or leasehold, absolute or fractional, corporeal or incorporeal, and includes express or implied appurtenant surface rights. (2220)

883.120. (a) This chapter does not apply to a mineral right reserved to the United States (whether in a patent, pursuant to federal law, or otherwise) or to an oil or gas lease, mining claim, or other mineral right of a person entitled pursuant thereto, to the extent provided in Section 880.240. (2221)

(b) This chapter does not apply to a mineral right of the state or a local public entity, or of any other person, to the extent provided in Section 880.240. (2222)

883.130. Nothing in this chapter limits or affects the common law governing abandonment of a mineral right or any other procedure provided by statute for clearing an abandoned mineral right from title to real property. (2223)

883.140. (a) As used in this section: (2224)

(1) "Lessee" includes an assignee or other successor in interest of the lessee. (2225)

(2) "Lessor" includes a successor in interest or heir or grantee of the lessor. (2226)

(b) If the term of a mineral right lease has expired or a mineral right lease has been abandoned by the lessee, the lessee shall, within 30 days after demand therefor by the lessor, execute, acknowledge, and deliver, or cause to be recorded, a deed quitclaiming all interest in and to the mineral rights covered by the lease. If the expiration or abandonment covers less than the entire interest of the lessee, the lessee shall execute, acknowledge, and deliver an appropriate instrument or notice of surrender or termination that covers the interest that has expired or been abandoned. (2227)

(c) If the lessee fails to comply with the requirements of this section, the lessee is liable for all damages sustained by the lessor as a result of the failure, including, but not limited to, court costs and reasonable attorney's fees in an action to clear title to the lessor's interest. The lessee shall also forfeit to the lessor the sum of one hundred fifty dollars ($150). (2228)

(d) Nothing in this section makes a quitclaim deed or other instrument or notice of surrender or termination, or a demand therefor, a condition precedent to an action to clear title to the lessor's interest. (2229)

Article 2. Termination of Dormant Mineral Right (883.210-883.270) (2230)(1-click HTML)

883.210. The owner of real property subject to a mineral right may bring an action to terminate the mineral right pursuant to this article if the mineral right is dormant. (2231)

883.220. For the purpose of this article, a mineral right is dormant if all of the following conditions are satisfied for a period of 20 years immediately preceding commencement of the action to terminate the mineral right: (2232)

(a) There is no production of the minerals and no exploration, drilling, mining, development, or other operations that affect the minerals, whether on or below the surface of the real property or on other property, whether or not unitized or pooled with the real property. (2233)

(b) No separate property tax assessment is made of the mineral right or, if made, no taxes are paid on the assessment. (2234)

(c) No instrument creating, reserving, transferring, or otherwise evidencing the mineral right is recorded. (2235)

883.230. (a) An owner of a mineral right may at any time record a notice of intent to preserve the mineral right. (2236)

(b) In lieu of the statement of the character of the interest claimed and the record location of the documents creating or evidencing the mineral rights claimed as otherwise required by paragraph (2) of subdivision (b) of Section 880.330 and in lieu of the legal description of the real property in which the interest is claimed as otherwise required by paragraph (3) of subdivision (b) of Section 880.330 and notwithstanding the provisions of Section 880.340 or any other provision in this title, a notice of intent to preserve a mineral right may refer generally and without specificity to any or all mineral rights claimed by claimant in any real property situated in the county. (2237)

(c) A mineral right is not dormant for the purpose of this article if: (2238)

(1) A notice of intent to preserve the mineral right is recorded within 20 years immediately preceding commencement of the action to terminate the mineral right. (2239)

(2) A notice of intent to preserve the mineral right is recorded pursuant to Section 883.250 after commencement of the action to terminate the mineral right. (2240)

883.240. (a) An action to terminate a mineral right pursuant to this article shall be brought in the superior court of the county in which the real property subject to the mineral right is located. (2241)

(b) The action shall be brought in the same manner and shall be subject to the same procedure as an action to quiet title pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 760.010) of Title 10 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, to the extent applicable. (2242)

883.250. In an action to terminate a mineral right pursuant to this article, the court shall permit the owner of the mineral right to record a late notice of intent to preserve the mineral right as a condition of dismissal of the action, upon payment into court for the benefit of the owner of the real property the litigation expenses attributable to the mineral right or portion thereof as to which the notice is recorded. As used in this section, the term "litigation expenses" means recoverable costs and expenses reasonably and necessarily incurred in preparation for the action, including a reasonable attorney's fee. (2243)

883.260. A mineral right terminated pursuant to this article is unenforceable and is deemed to have expired. A court order terminating a mineral right pursuant to this article is equivalent for all purposes to a conveyance of the mineral right to the owner of the real property. (2244)

883.270. Subject to Section 880.370 (grace period for recording notice), this article applies to all mineral rights, whether executed or recorded before, on, or after January 1, 1985. (2245)

  

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