When we are acting for developers who are purchasing a piece of land quite often mines and minerals will have been excepted.
If the mines and minerals are excepted this means that someone else has the rights to mines and minerals in, on or under the land. The risk to the developer is that the owner of the reservation of mines and minerals may allege that the foundations of any development may amount to trespass.
If you identify that the land if subject to any such reservations then the first step is to get as much information as possible about the reservation top see how they affect your planned use, such as at what depth of the mines and minerals that are reserved.
If land that you are planning to develop has rights to mines and minerals reserved then there are a number of ways to address the matter:-
1. obtain indemnity insurance, the indemnity insurance will not remove the reservation but it would mean that if a claim is made for trespass and /or access for works then a claim for losses can be made under the policy;
2. that you contact the minerals owner to ask whether they would be minded to sell their rights. Any approach to the owner of the mines and minerals should be considered seriously beforehand as once you make contact with the owner you will be prevented from obtaining indemnity insurance.
If you are a developer and have a question on mines and minerals then please do not hesitate to make contact with Christie Limb on 01623 663244.