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Common Issues in Preparation of a Title Opinion

Brian R. Bjella, Uriah J. Price, Nuts and Bolts of Mineral Title Examination

Most title standards relate to general real property issues without specific regard to mineral title issues. Although the title standards of some states may address mineral title issues, North Dakota appears to be the only state that has adopted separate and specific mineral title standards.10 North Dakota's regular title standards contain a mineral section.11 However, North Dakota's separate mineral title standards deal exclusively and comprehensively with title issues relating specifically to mineral interests.12 The introduction to the North Dakota Mineral Title Standards provides:

This volume of Mineral Title Standards of the State Bar Association of North Dakota has been prepared by the Mineral Title Standards Committee of the Section of Real Property, Probate and Trust Law. These standards are based on the relevant statutes of the State of North Dakota, decisions of the North Dakota Supreme Court (and courts of other jurisdictions deemed to be relevant to North Dakota) and the collective experience of the members of the Mineral Title Standards Committee. Mineral title standards continue to evolve as statutes change, cases are decided, and lawyers develop collective shared experience. These standards should be considered realistically; they should not be accepted as the final authority for a particular point. This volume should be used in conjunction with the N