Friday, March 05, 2004

Virginia Supreme Court affirms coalbed methane decision for landowners over coal owner

In Harrison-Wyatt, LLC v. Ratliff, the Supreme Court in an opinion by Senior Justice Stephenson upheld the ruling of Judge Williams of the Buchanan County Circuit Court on the issue of title to coalbed methane passed with the conveyances of rights to the coal. The answer is no, the surface owner and his successors retained ownership of the coalbed methane. The Court concluded that the word "coal" is not ambiguous.

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