Texas Wesleyan Law Review


Dayna Ferebee

Document Type



The Supreme Court of Texas recently denied rehearing Rogers v. Ricane Enterprises, Inc., thereby reaffirming their restriction of the Davis doctrine, a 70-year-old principle that allowed a mineral lease to terminate when the operator completely abandoned the purpose of the mineral lease. Although the Davis doctrine itself is a narrow rule of Texas oil and gas law, and rarely applied today, the questions raised in Rogers v. Ricane expose the tenuous foundation of oil and gas law built in large measure on handshake deals3 and good will. The law of oil and gas is based on the uncomfortable marriage of contract and property law. Rogers v. Ricane illustrates the confusion that can arise when a court applies these principles. This comment examines the difficulty Texas courts have intrepreting oil and gas partial assignments, which they may do by looking at the writing itself against the backdrop of common industry practice. First, the article reviews Texas law in this area and then looks at the Rogers v. Ricane Enterprises, Inc. decisions.



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