Part 3. Landowner Protection.

113-420. Notice and entry to property.

(a) Notice Required for Activities That Do Not Disturb Surface of Property to Surface Owner. - If an oil or gas developer or operator is not the surface owner of the property on which oil and gas operations are to occur, before entering the property for oil or gas operations that do not disturb the surface, including inspections, staking, surveys, measurements, and general evaluation of proposed routes and sites for oil or gas drilling operations, the developer or operator shall give written notice to the surface owner at least 14 days before the desired date of entry to the property. Notice shall be given by certified mail, return receipt requested. The requirements of this subsection may not be waived by agreement of the parties. The notice, at a minimum, shall include all of the following:

(1) The identity of person(s) requesting entry upon the property.

(2) The purpose for entry on the property.

(3) The dates, times, and location on which entry to the property will occur, including the estimated number of entries.

(b) Notice Required for Land-Disturbing Activities to Surface Owner. - If an oil or gas developer or operator is not the surface owner of the property on which oil or gas operations are to occur, before entering the property for oil or gas operations that disturb the surface, the developer or operator shall give written notice to the surface owner at least 30 days before the desired date of entry to the property. Notice shall be given by certified mail, return receipt requested. The notice, at a minimum, shall include all of the following:

(1) A description of the exploration or development plan, including, but not limited to (i) the proposed locations of any roads, drill pads, pipeline routes, and other alterations to the surface estate and (ii) the proposed date on or after which the proposed alterations will begin.

(2) An offer of the oil and gas developer or operator to consult with the surface owner to review and discuss the location of the proposed alterations.

(3) The name, address, telephone number, and title of a contact person employed by or representing the oil or gas developer or operator who the surface owner may contact following the receipt of notice concerning the location of the proposed alterations.

(b1) Persons Entering Land; Identification Required; Presumption of Proper Protection While on Surface Owners' Property. - Persons who enter land on behalf of an oil or gas developer or operator for oil and gas operations shall carry on their person identification sufficient to identify themselves and their employer or principal and shall present the identification to the surface owner upon request. Entry upon land by such a person creates a rebuttable presumption that the surface owner properly protected the person against personal injury or property damage while the person was on the land.

(b2) Notice of Initiation of Exploration, Development, and Production Activities to Owner of Subsurface Oil or Gas Resources. - If an oil or gas developer or operator is the lessee of subsurface oil or gas resources, before initiating oil or gas exploration or development operations with respect to those resources, the developer or operator shall give written notice to the lessor of those resources at least 30 days before the oil and gas operations are to be initiated. The notice, at a minimum, shall include all of the following:

(1) A description of the exploration or development plan, including, the proposed date on which the exploration or development will begin.

(2) The name, address, telephone number, and title of a contact person employed by or representing the oil or gas developer or operator who the lessor may contact following the receipt of notice.

(c) Venue. - If the oil or gas developer or operator fails to give notice or otherwise comply with the provisions of this section, the surface owner may seek appropriate relief in the superior court for the county in which the oil or gas well is located and may receive actual damages. (2011-276, s. 3(b); 2012-143, s. 4(a); 2014-4, s. 12.)