Delaware Fracking Company Stops Illegal Lease Solicitations

Delaware Fracking Company Stops Illegal Lease Solicitations
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August 11, 2014

A Delaware-based fracking company has been forced to stop soliciting leases from North Carolina landowners until it complies with state law.

Crimson Holdings sent about 1,500 leases to landowners, offering $5 per acre to explore for oil and gas on their land. The North Carolina Attorney General's Office announced Monday that company violated North Carolina law and will stop soliciting leases until it complies.

According to a release sent Monday by the North Carolina Attorney General's Office, when Crimson Holdings sought the leases, it wasn't registered to do business in North Carolina and the leases lasted for more than 10 years, failed to give consumers the right to cancel, and don't seek approval of the property owner's mortgage lender. The company also failed to give landowners the educational information required by law. It was unclear on Monday if ay leases had been signed and returned.

Crimson Holding's written response to the North Carolina Attorney General's Office stated that they were in the process of putting together the required documentation.

If landowners are contacted by an oil or gas company, they should not be pressured to sign and should call an attorney immediately to review the terms. If you still have a mortgage on your land, contact your lender to make sure that signing a lease wouldn't violate the terms of your mortgage.

Landmen, the trade name for oil and gas salesmen, must register with the NC Department of Environment and Naturall Resources (DENR). You can research a landman online at the DENR website or by calling (919) 707-8605. Additionally, the company is required to register to do business in the state. This information can be found at the NC Secretary of State's office.

When landmen offer you a lease, they are also required to provide you with a copy of the state laws that protect the owner. The lease terms should also stipulate that you have seven days to cancel in writing. Always get a copy of your lease and put any other promises in writing.

For more information about fracking in North Carolina and your rights, visit ncdoj.gov/fracking.