The surface rights that I inherited were severed from the mineral rights at the time of original purchase of the land by my family members in the 1940's. Those mineral rights were retained by a coal company (Cherokee and Pittsburg) that was no longer active in the area, but nevertheless wanted to retain those rights. Since that time, the coal company has gone out of business. How are the mineral rights treated? Are those rights automatically transferred to the surface owner, or is there some process I can go throught to claim them?
Any help is appreciated!