PRIOR PRINTER'S NOS. 1762, 1945
PRINTER'S NO. 1976
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
INTRODUCED BY YAW AND SCHWANK, NOVEMBER 10, 2011
AMENDED ON THIRD CONSIDERATION, MARCH 5, 2012
Amending Title 42 (Judiciary and Judicial Procedure) of the
Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, in particular rights and
immunities, providing for actions to quiet title involving
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Title 42 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated
Statutes is amended by adding a section to read:
§ 8320.1. Actions to quiet title involving subsurface rights.
(a) Rebuttable presumption.--In an action to quiet title
involving subsurface rights to real property, failure by any
person claiming to hold the subsurface rights, other than the
surface owner of the real property, to exercise the subsurface
rights for a period in excess of 50 years shall create a
rebuttable presumption that the subsurface rights have been
abandoned by such person in favor of the surface owner.
(b) Nonapplicability.--The rebuttable presumption
established in this section shall not apply to fee interests,
including, without limitation, deeds and long-term leases for
coal and other minerals and oil and gas, including all
appurtenant rights, which have been reserved or acquired by a
duly recorded conveyance.
(c) Definitions.--The following words and phrases when used
in this section shall have the meanings given to them in this
subsection unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Exercise of subsurface rights." The term includes, but is
not limited to, any of the following:
(1) The production of any oil and gas coal or other
minerals and the production of coal or other minerals any oil
and gas under subsurface rights.
(2) Operations being conducted under subsurface rights
for injection, withdrawal, storage or disposal of water, oil,
gas or other fluid substances.
(3) A mortgage, assignment, conveyance or order or
agreement to pool or unitize subsurface rights recorded in
the recorder's office in the county in which the right or
interest is located.
(4) Payment of taxes or fees on subsurface rights by the
owner or owner's agent.
(5) A valid permit of any government agency pertaining
to the use of subsurface rights has been issued.
(6) A statement describing subsurface rights and
claiming ownership of the right and the intention to preserve
subsurface rights is filed with the court and recorded in the
county where the subsurface rights are located prior to entry
of a final judgment.
(7) Use of the surface, the strata between the surface
and the situs of the mineral and the strata where the mineral
is situated for, without limitation, exploration, evaluation,
surveying, digging, extraction, production, draining,
ventilation, cleaning, storing, blending and transportation
for and of the mineral.
"Subsurface rights." Mineral Coal or other mineral, oil or
gas rights or interests, or any combination of those rights or
Section 2. This act shall take effect in 60 days.