- Ag Docket
(6,682 acres sold at auction via auction company; sale brochure delivered to plaintiff said that defendant seller would convey certain mineral rights along with the real estate; plaintiff relied on representations in brochure and paid $8.9 million for the land and mineral rights advertised in brochure and purchase agreement executed same day; purchase agreement contained integration clause stating that final bids subject to sellers' acceptance or rejection, and that seller warranted that they were selling 100 percent of their ownership in the mineral rights being sold; all real estate sold "as is"; transaction closed and two years later, plaintiff discovered it had not acquired mineral rights; mineral rights were actually owned by separate branch of seller’s family that had transferred them to an LLC which then leased them to another entity in return for bonus lease payments and future royalty payments; buyer’s attorneys did not conduct mineral title search ; plaintiff sued for breach of warranty deed and seisin, breach of purchase agreement, breach of auction sale agreement, fraud, reformation of purchase agreement and specific performance; and defendant moved to dismiss claim based on breach of auction sale agreement and court granted motion because purchase agreement's integration clause was clear and unambiguous and barred separate contract action based on earlier oral or written assurances not incorporated into purchase agreement and neither alleged oral agreement or auction brochure incorporated into purchase agreement; auction brochure stated that purchase agreement controlled terms of sale; plaintiff can pursue contract remedy for breach of purchase agreement; on fraud claim that defendant's held themselves out as owning mineral rights that they promised to convey (plaintiff claimed that the family of sellers represented that actual part of the family that sold the land held mineral rights, but they actually did not (it was the non-contracting members of the family that held the mineral rights)); defendant’s motion to dismiss claim of fraud in inducement denied; defendant's motion for judgment on pleadings with respect to reformation and specific performance of purchase agreement claims denied).
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