BPX Operating Company v. Strickhausen
Ms. Strickhausen’s mineral lease with BPX prohibited pooling her tract with others without her “express written consent.” Nevertheless, BPX pooled several tracts, including Strickhausen’s property, to create a 320-acre unit. Unlike Strickhausen’s lease, her neighbors’ leases permitted pooling. BPX attempted to obtain Strickhausen’s written consent or ratification of the pooling, but Strickhausen consistently refused and repeatedly objected to BPX’s activity. As the parties continued to communicate and discuss a settlement or other resolution, BPX began paying Strickhausen pooled royalties rather than on a “tract participation basis.” When Strickhausen finally sued BPX for breach of contract, BPX alleged Strickhausen had ratified the pooling by cashing her royalty checks. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of BPX, but the San Antonio Court of Appeals reversed.