Oil producers have more time to pay off unpaid royalties

Published: Oct. 29, 2020 at 7:42 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Following a state Supreme Court ruling in 2019, the Department of Trust Lands sent a letter to oil producers prior to the pandemic asking for repayment on unpaid royalties.

The February letter said royalties would need to be paid by spring of 2020.

When the price war and the pandemic shook the industry a month after the letter was sent out, the department decided to postpone the payment deadline to September of 2020 and again postponed to April 2021.

“They essentially have a year now to come into compliance and remain at the no penalty, minimal interest,” said Land Commissioner Jodi Smith.

Smith said the energy industry, like many other industries during the pandemic, is struggling and should be allowed the time to come into compliance.

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