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Curing Title Defects Pursuant to Title Opinions

Nicola L. Maddox, Mineral Title Examination III (1992)

Drilling and Division Order Title Opinions1 are promulgated to provide an historical analysis of the facts relevant to the ownership of a particular tract of land resulting in two specific end products. First, the ownership interests at the point in time examined are set forth clearly and concisely. Secondly, a listing of the problems identified during the analysis which may alter or impact the ownership interests is included. These problems are commonly referred to as “title defects” and must be resolved to ensure the ownership interests as calculated and established within the opinion are correct. The purpose of this paper is to identify the roles of the key players in this process, the manner in which the title defects are explained and the approaches to solving the defects from the point of view of the client who in most cases is represented by a landman or division order analyst.


Role of the Examining Attorney and the Marketable Standard

When a client or company is planning on investing a fairly large amount of money in a property by drilling, it must first assure itself it has properly secured the appropriate oil and gas rights. The most common and safest approach is to have qualified legal counsel review all title records and transactions to develop a factual summary of the title history of the particu