COVID-19 raises a number of serious issues for operators and other industry participants in the oil patch, including compliance with continuous drilling obligations, shut-in royalty clauses, cessation of production, and production in paying quantities. Please watch this short video segment to learn more.
In the latest episode of our energy law podcast, we discuss recent guidance from the Texas Supreme Court on interpreting oil-and-gas contracts; cross-jurisdictional differences surrounding the rule of capture and subsurface mineral trespass; and troubling class action developments for operators and other industry participants.
I have written previously about class certification in the oil patch. Frequently the emphasis is around whether the putative class can satisfy Rule 23’s commonality and predominance requirements. The recent trend has been toward troubling developments for operators, including courts that focus on ostensibly “common” facts that are irrelevant to the claims asserted or, worse […]
Last year, I wrote about Pennsylvania’s departure from Texas on the law surrounding trespass by hydraulic fracturing. As first stated in Coastal Oil & Gas Corp. v. Garza Energy Trust, 268 S.W.3d 1 (Tex. 2008), trespass claims for drainage by hydraulic fracturing are barred in Texas by the venerable “rule of capture”—shorthand for the theory […]
The Texas Supreme Court, beginning in 2017, began issuing a number of decisions altering the analysis for the interpretation of oil-and-gas agreements, principally mineral leases and conveyances. I wrote about many of these opinions as they were released: “Texas High Court Ruling Sows Confusion On Mineral Deeds” (Wenske v. Ealy) (Law360, subscription required)—chipping away at […]
In the latest episode of our energy law podcast, we discuss troubling developments at the intersection of class actions and consumer protection laws in royalty underpayment cases; the Texas Supreme Court’s latest pronouncements on the duties of executive mineral rights owners to non-executives; and a new appellate court decision that addresses when the acceptance of […]
Last month, the Texas Supreme Court issued a decision that addresses the vexing situation in which the owner of the executive rights also owns the surface, but none (or virtually none) of the minerals. What is the duty of the executive rights holder in this situation?
The San Antonio Court of Appeals recently determined that the acceptance of royalty payments will not necessarily operate as a waiver of a mineral lease’s anti-pooling provision.
In the normal course, when landowners believe they have been underpaid royalties under an oil-and-gas lease, they sue individually. Most of the time the core claim is for breach of contract (notwithstanding that royalty-underpayment petitions are often littered with tertiary, throw-away causes of action that no one takes very seriously). As I have written in […]