Biltex Enterprises, Inc. v. Myers

Biltex Enterprises, Inc v. Myers, 2015 Tex. App. LEXIS 4484 (Tex.App. Ft. Worth, 2015)

A suit to determine the title to minerals must be prosecuted as a trespass to try title action and legal fees may not be awarded to the prevailing party.

Biltex filed suit against Myers. Biltex filed a declaratory judgment suit that a lease to an 80-acre tract in Parker County and part of the Poolville Unit 7 had expired due to the lack of production from May to September 2003. Myers filed a counterclaim seeking a declaratory judgment that the lease had not terminated and asserted a suit to quiet title. The jury found that the well had not ceased producing in paying quantities and awarded Myers attorneys’ fees. The sole issue on appeal was the appropriateness of this attorneys’ fees award. The court held that the determination by the jury that the lease was valid, which resolved all issues, could only have been brought as a trespass to try title suit and that attorneys’ fees are not proper in such a suit.