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Proudly celebrating over 25 years as the premier
land services company in South Arkansas.
Welcome to Atlanta Exploration Company.
Crude Oil & Natural Gas Exploration - Lease Brokerage - Mineral and Royalty Acquisition
Yes! We buy minerals and royalty.
Atlanta Exploration Company routinely offers up-front lump sum payments to acquire mineral/royalty interests.
Atlanta Exploration Company is a privately held, independent crude oil and natural gas exploration company headquartered in Magnolia, Arkansas. Our experienced landmen provide a full range of land services, including lease brokerage services through our affiliate, Atlanta Oil Company.
Our President and founder, Alan Ribble, received his degree in Petroleum & Land Management from the University of Oklahoma, and started Atlanta Exploration Company in 1986. In 1988, as economic times changed, we began purchasing and extending production. Today, we are working interest owners in over 80 Arkansas wells, minor interests in some 500 additional wells nationwide.
We are able to provide a full range of land services, combining in-house expertise with professional field experience, timeliness and accuracy. We take pride in producing positive results for our clients, confidently taking projects from initiation to completion, and providing value at every step. We would love to do the same for you. Contact us today.
The vast majority of our work has been in the Ark-La-Tex region, and our knowledge of heirship and family history is unparalleled. Our existing relationships with mineral owners reduces costs for clients.
FAST AND CLEAN
We use up-to-date technology, local landmen, and over 25 years of experience and proven relationships to provide a distinct advantage for our clients.
Having legal counsel on staff provides us with expanded contract drafting capabilities to meet the many types of agreements that our clients need in today's market.
Our landmen and all our staff regularly receive continuing education and ongoing training and materials to ensure they are ready to meet the latest challenges in our ever-changing field.
We understand that the people who live and work near our operations, wells, and work sites are our neighbors. We also understand that we have a responsibility to give back to the community.
Through our membership with Arkansas Independent Producers and Royalty Owners (AIPRO), we help sponsor such programs as Project Learning Tree Arkansas, which provides professional development workshops for Arkansas's teachers about how to educate students about energy.
Our affiliate companies are major timber and surface owners in South Arkansas. As such, we understand that everything we do has an effect upon the environment and other businesses. We take great care to ensure that we keep the impact upon our surroundings to a minimum.
We work closely with the Arkansas Oil & Gas Commission (AOGC), Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), to ensure that we are abiding by all applicable laws, rules & regulations.
Because we're surface owners ourselves, we know what it is like to have a well drilled and situated on our property. And because a well may produce for 50 years or more, we recognize that our relationships with surface owners are critical.
We maintain open and honest communication with landowners in order to avoid disputes and maximize benefit to all parties involved. We give our best effort to answer questions, and encourage surface owners to contact us at any time.
Frequently-asked Questions (FAQ)
Below you'll find answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. If you don't see the answer you're looking for below, feel free to contact us.
Basics of Mineral Ownership
Oil and Gas Leases
Mineral and Royalty Sales
Q: Can you provide a brief overview of mineral ownership in Arkansas?
A: In several situations in the State of Arkansas, the ownership of the minerals underneath a particular tract of land (“mineral estate”) has been severed from ownership of the surface (“surface estate”). This happens, for example, when someone sells a tract of land but reserves the mineral interest to themselves. That mineral interest may be passed down and split up through several generations. Arkansas law establishes that the mineral estate is “dominant” over the surface estate. This means that the mineral owner(s) has the right to conduct exploration activities without the permission from the surface owner, including the right to freely use the surface estate to the extent reasonably necessary for the exploration, development and production of the oil and gas under the property.
Q: How does a Company obtain the right to drill wells and explore for oil and gas?
A: A company can gain the right to explore for minerals on a particular tract of land once they have obtained an Oil and Gas Lease from one of the mineral owners. The company that acquires the Oil and Gas Lease is referred to as the “Lessee”. The mineral owner granting the lease is the “Lessor.” The Oil and Gas Lease grants the Lessee broad rights to use the surface for the purpose of exploring for and producing oil, gas and other minerals. Rights include, but are not limited to, the right to conduct seismic tests, to drill wells, to ingress and egress, to build, maintain, and use roads and pipelines for accessing well sites and facilities, to use surface and subsurface water on the tract for drilling and production, and to drill and operate injection wells for enhanced recovery of minerals and disposal of produced water.
The Lessee “steps into the shoes” of the mineral owner, and therefore has the right to conduct these exploration activities without the permission from the surface owner. Exploration companies often prefer to avoid potential disputes by obtaining a “Surface Damage/Use Agreement” from the Surface Owner and to pay them a one time fee for the use of the surfaces. A Landman will enter in to negotiations with a Surface Owner to obtain such an agreement. In the event, an agreement is not reached; the company still has the right to conduct reasonable surface activities, and will begin administrative or court proceedings to do so.
Q: Why are some lease offers for more or less money than others?
A: Many factors go into lease prices, which may vary not only at the state, county or local level, but also by depth to be explored. The most important factor in lease prices is risk. Exploration companies and their geologists ask questions such as, “What is the chance that this particular prospect at this particular depth will produce oil or gas in paying quantities sufficient to cover my costs and make a profit?” and “Given that risk, how much can I afford to pay for leases?” The lease bonus (the money paid up front to the mineral owner for signing a lease) may be higher in cases where the risk for a particular prospect is higher. In such situations, the royalty (the fractional share received by the mineral owner for actual oil or gas later sold, if any) would be lower. Conversely, if the risk is low and paying quantities are seen as more easily achievable, a lower bonus and higher royalty may be possible.
Q: I have received an Oil and Gas Lease, and agree with the terms--what should I do next?
A: You should sign the lease in the presence of a notary public who is licensed in the state in which you live. Be sure to bring picture identification with you. The notary will affix his/her signature and stamp to the lease, certifying that you signed it. The lease needs to be signed exactly as your name appears on lease itself. This is how your name has been filed of record. If there are extra directions on the letter, such as filling out a W-9 form, please carefully follow them.
Next, return the Executed Lease Package in one of two ways: (1) Write “Send check” on the draft, and return all documents including the executed Oil and Gas Lease, Draft, and completed W-9 form to Atlanta Exploration Company, P.O. Box 9, Magnolia, AR 71754 using the self-addressed stamped envelope provided. After the lease has been approved and the information verified, a check will be mailed directly to you. This is the easiest and most common way to return the lease package and get paid quickly.
(2) Alternatively, you may choose to take all documents, including the executed Oil and Gas Lease and Draft to your bank. Your bank will send all documents to our bank, then our bank will send a copy on to us. After the lease has been approved and the information verified, a check will be mailed from our bank to your bank. Your bank will then deposit the check into your account. A bank draft usually allows 30 banking days from the day Atlanta Exploration Company receives the executed lease until payment is sent to your bank. This is a traditional way of doing business, but takes more time and effort and is rarely used anymore.
Q: I received my lease, but what if my name is misspelled or other information is incorrect?
A: Call our office at (870) 234-2526 or contact us online and we will double check how your name is filed of record. In most cases, a corrected lease can be sent the same day, if necessary.
Q: Why do I have to fill out a W-9 form and provide my Social Security Number?
A: Federal law dictates that it is the responsibility of every business to have a signed, legible copy of form W-9 on hand for every person, business or entity that it issues a check to. This means that any non-employee to be paid must fill out a W-9 for the business to keep on record, regardless of the amount of money involved or the number of times in a year a check is issued. Unfortunately, there are no exceptions. The information on the W-9, such as your social security number, is required to be kept confidential and used for the above purposes only. You can be assured that Atlanta Exploration Company values your privacy and will safeguard your information in compliance with all applicable laws.
Q: I am interested in selling my minerals/royalties instead of signing a lease? Can I do that? Should I do that?
A: For a variety of reasons, mineral or royalty owners elect to sell their interests. These reasons include:
1. Reducing Paperwork. Some owners, especially those with smaller interests, decide that their mineral rights just don’t justify the hassle of ownership any longer. Eliminating the paperwork associated with mineral ownership can also significantly simply your tax returns each year.
2. A Lower Tax Rate. The capital gains proceeds from a sale of either producing or non-producing mineral rights are currently (2012) taxed at only 15%. Royalty and bonus payments on the other hand, are taxed at your regular income tax rate, which can be much higher if you make a lot of money in one year.*
*Please check with your tax or investment professional for questions related to tax or investment advice. The information provided on this web site, while believed to be accurate, is not meant to be tax or investment advice.
3. Depletion of Assets. No matter how good a producing well is, it will eventually stop producing as the field becomes depleted. Once that happens, the mineral rights will be worth only a small fraction of what they once were. Because it is hard to predict exactly when a field may become depleted, owners may decide at some point to convert mineral properties into other assets such as real estate, stocks, bonds and other investments that may appreciate more or hold value longer than their dwindling oil and gas interests.
4. Managing your Estate. It is often easier to liquidate mineral rights held by an individual prior to their death, at which time it becomes necessary to probate their estate. If the individual owns mineral rights in more than one state, their estate would need to be probated in each state in order for title to pass to their heirs. In addition, if the individual resides in one state at the time of their death, but owns minerals in another, their estate would also need to be probated in the state where the minerals are located. This can result in a lot of expense for an estate, and thus the heirs. It is much easier to distribute cash assets to heirs than it is to divide up property after someone passes away.
5. Fractionalization of Interests. As mineral rights are passed from one generation to the next they are often divided into such small amounts that their economic value to each succeeding generation diminishes exponentially. Keeping track of the minerals at that point can become more of a headache than they are worth to the heirs.
Q: Does Atlanta Exploration Company buy minerals/royalties?
A: Atlanta Exploration Company routinely offers up-front lump sum payments to acquire mineral/royalty interests on tracts we have offered to lease. If you are interested in Atlanta Exploration Company making an offer to buy your minerals rather than lease them, please call us at (870) 904-3526 or contact us online via the form at the bottom of this page.
Whether it's about an oil and gas lease you've received, or some minerals you'd like to sell, we would love to hear from you.
627 E. Main St., PO Box 9, Magnolia, AR 71754
Please fill out the form below, providing us your name, e-mail address, and a brief message. Someone will contact you shortly.
4035 Jefferson Ave., Texarkana, AR 71854
Atlanta Exploration Company, together with its affiliated lease brokerage, Atlanta Oil Company, is the premier provider of land services in South Arkansas.
Based in Magnolia, Arkansas with additional offices in Texarkana, we are uniquely positioned to provide superior crude oil and natural gas exploration and lease brokerage services to our clients.
Atlanta Exploration Company
PO Box 9
Magnolia, AR 71754-0009
© 2014 Copyright by Atlanta Exploration Company. All Rights Reserved.