Archer County v. Webb
Supreme Court of Texas
338 S.W.2d 435 (1960)
Dorothy Scarbauer and others obtained by deed an interest in oil and gas royalties on a parcel of land for a term of 15 years “or so long as oil or gas shall be produced from said premises, or any part thereof in commercially paying quantities.” The deed provided that if the lands were not producing oil or gas after 15 years, the conveyance would expire. The initial conveyor was Margaret Shannon. The conveyance occurred in 1929. When Shannon died, the parcel of land passed by will to C.R. Webb and others (defendants), as trustees of Shannon’s estate. In 1940, the defendants leased oil and gas rights on the property to R.G. Carr, who assigned the lease to Phillips Petroleum Company (Phillips) and Fred Turner. The lease had a ten-year term, but could be extended by either production or by payment of a shut-in royalty. Specifically, the lease stated that upon the payment of the shut-in royalty, gas will be considered produced “within the meaning of paragraph 2 hereof.” In the years that Phillips and Turner’s well did not produce, they paid the shut-in royalties to the defendants. Meanwhile, after the 15-year term in the original deed expired, Archer County and others (plaintiffs), as trustees for Scarbauer, brought suit, seeking a declaratory judgment that Scarbauer’s royalty interest was still in effect on account of the shut-in royalty payments made under the subsequent lease. The trial court held that the Phillips lease and related shut-in royalty payments extended the term of Scarbauer’s royalty interest. The Texas Court of Civil Appeals reversed. The plaintiffs appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Hickman, C.J.)
Dissent (Hamilton, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 724,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee
Here's why 724,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 45,600 briefs, keyed to 983 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.