On Wednesday, May 6, 2015, the Supreme Court of Ohio will hear the oral argument in Corban v. Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C., et al., a case involving the Ohio Dormant Mineral Act (DMA). The Court will consider the following questions certified from the United Stated District Court for the Southern District of Ohio:

  • Does the 2006 version or the 1989 version of the [DMA] apply to a claim filed after 2006 alleging that the rights to oil, gas, and other minerals automatically vested in the surface land holder before the 2006 amendments took effect?
  • Is the payment of a delay rental during the term of an oil and gas lease a “title transaction” and “savings event” under the [DMA]?

You can watch the oral argument live at the Ohio Channel website. The Court will begin hearing oral arguments at 9 a.m.

Also, last week, the Court accepted two more cases involving the DMA: Farnsworth v. Burkhart and Tribett v. Shepherd.

In Burkhart, the Court will consider whether the 1989 version of the DMA creates a “fixed” or “rolling” look-back period. The Court will also consider the impact of a claim to preserve filed under division H(1) of the 2006 version of the DMA. The Court is holding the Burkhart case pending the Court’s upcoming decisions in Eisenbarth v. Reusser and Dodd v. Croskey.

In Tribett v. Shepherd, the Court will consider the constitutionality and application of the 1989 version of the DMA. The Court will also decide whether a mineral interest is the “subject of” a conveyance that specifically identifies (but does not convey) the mineral interest. The Court is holding the Shepherd case pending the Court’s upcoming decision in Walker v. Shondrick-Nau.