Rist v. Westhoma Oil Co.
Supreme Court of Oklahoma
385 P.2d 791 (Okla. 1963)
Westhoma Oil Company (Westhoma) (plaintiff) leased oil and gas rights at all horizons below sea level in a tract of land. Other lessees owned the lease rights for all horizons above sea level in the tract. The lease contained a Pugh clause, which stated that if a portion of the leasehold was pooled, the lease, “insofar as it cover[ed] any tract or tracts not included” in the pooled unit, would terminate as to the excluded tract unless there was production on that tract specifically. There was mineral production on the tract on the horizons above sea level, but no production or drilling operations on the horizons below sea level. After the primary term of the lease expired, Westhoma brought suit against B.C. Rist and Gladys Rist (defendants), the lessors, to quiet title to the land in the District Court of Texas County. Westhoma claimed that the production at the higher depth operated to extend the primary term of the lease for the lower, below-sea-level depths as well. The Rists argued that the Pugh clause severed the leasehold horizontally, meaning that the lack of production at the depths below sea level cancelled the lease as to those depths at the expiration of the primary term. The trial court ruled in favor of Westhoma. The Rists appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Berry, 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 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read 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. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 175,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 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.