Header graphic for print
Oil & Gas Law Report Reporting on recent legal developments and trends in the oil and gas industry.

Category Archives: Other Articles

Subscribe to Other Articles RSS Feed

Health Care Reform Surprise: Obama Administration Delays Enforcement of Employer Mandate For One Year

Posted in Other Articles

With the Obama administration’s recent surprise delay regarding the enforcement of the employer mandate under the Affordable Care Act, our colleagues at Employee Benefits Law Report have posted a summary. Given the impact to many businesses, regardless of industry, we wanted to take a moment and share the post with you.   

We’re interested in your feedback; please do not hesitate to contact either Rich McHugh or me.…


Continue Reading →

Due Diligence in Lending to the Oil and Gas Industry

Posted in Other Articles

Lenders venturing into Ohio’s oil and gas industry need to be aware of unique features of the industry and how to conduct due diligence to properly evaluate risk. Successful lenders understand how the maturity of an oil and gas play, unique features of oil and gas assets, and a borrower’s experience can impact risk. Unique lending arrangements can help mitigate risk for all parties. My guest post on Porter Wright’s Banking and Finance Law Report helps lenders appreciate these basic concepts.…


Continue Reading →

Is There a Right To Appeal an Oil and Gas Drilling Permit in Ohio? [UPDATE: No]

Posted in Other Articles

Ohio Supreme Court Rules Drilling Permits Are Not Appealable to the Oil and Gas Commission

The Ohio Supreme Court this week ruled in the case Chesapeake Exploration, LLC v. Oil and Gas Commission, Slip Opinion No. 2013-Ohio-224, agreeing with Chesapeake and holding that there is no right to appeal a drilling permit in Ohio. In doing so, the Court decided that R.C. 1509.06(F) does exclude drilling permits as appealable orders. This means that once a drilling permit is issued by the Chief, it cannot be appealed to the Oil and Gas Commission. You can read the whole opinion (it’s short). 

To learn more about this topic, read our original post.…


Continue Reading →

Dealing With a Mineral Interest Not Administered as Part of Predeceased Owner’s Estate

Posted in Other Articles

You are interested in acquiring a gas lease on certain parcel. When you look at the real property records, however, you discover the record owner is deceased. Now what do you do? Who owns the interests? How do you evidence this ownership?

This issue might be best discussed in the context of an example. Roger Farmer sold his farm, located in Muskingum County, Ohio, in 1978 and retained the mineral interests. That is, Roger “severed” the mineral interest from the rest of the property. He died in 1995 without transferring those interests. He left a will, admitted to probate in Franklin County, Ohio, which left all his property, real and personal, to his son, John.

John died in 2002, also without transferring the interests. There is no record of any will being admitted to probate, or of the administration of his estate. To determine the current owners of the mineral interest, we have to analyze Roger’s will and John’s family situation.…


Continue Reading →

Lawsuits Over “Fraudulent” Oil & Gas Leases Often Lack Merit

Posted in Contracts and Leases, Other Articles, Real Estate, Regulatory, Shale

The Ohio shale boom started slowly when a few small companies quietly began acquiring mineral leases for as little as $25 per acre.  This soon gave way to a full blown land rush in the fall of 2010.  But as lease prices skyrocketed through the Fall of 2011, disillusioned lessors who signed before the peak of the market were the ones rushing – to the courthouse to file lawsuits to cancel their leases.

In order to gain leverage and legitimize their lawsuit, lessors frequently allege that their lease is “unconscionable” or they were fraudulently induced to sign it.  “Exhibit A” to these lawsuits is often a technical error in the lease signing or a “fraudulent” statement made by a landman.  There are exceptions, but many of these kinds of lawsuits have no legal basis.…


Continue Reading →