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Energy

Whether you are an oil and gas project developer, well driller, energy producer, processor or midstream company, the energy industry is complex, and circumstances may arise where you find you need legal guidance.

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Whether you are an oil and gas project developer, well driller, energy producer, processor, or midstream company, the energy industry is complex and circumstances may arise where you find you need legal guidance. Tucker Arensberg is well equipped to provide clients with a broad array of skills and experience, market knowledge, and the regulatory understanding to lead clients in the right direction. Our clients range from small operations to some of the largest oil and gas producers in the United States. Members of the Energy Practice Group have represented coal producers and marketers, and even some utility company consumers. We also represent a large electric utility company in virtually all of their litigation. In the course of representing these diverse energy related clients we have provided a broad range of legal services. A few of the matters in which we have represented these companies are set forth below:

  • Developing private placement memoranda and providing related securities and tax advice.
  • Negotiating leases, farm-out agreements, and rights of way.
  • Performing title work on large scale drilling projects.
  • Negotiating and preparing partnership agreements and operating agreements.
  • Negotiating and preparing transportation and processing agreements.
  • Advising clients on environmental issues and litigating environmental claims.
  • Creating affiliated company structures to serve client needs and reduce risk.
  • Litigating landowner claims.
  • Litigating contract disputes arising out of gas transportation and processing.
  • Litigating federal issues relating to public land access and development.
  • Litigating engineering and construction projects, including pipeline construction.
  • Assisting clients in developing creative new development scenarios.
  • Advising clients in the sale and purchase of energy assets, including leases, pipelines, and processing plants.

Tucker Arensberg provides these services to oil and gas developers and producers as well as coal producers, and to ancillary businesses in the oil and gas and coal industries, primarily in the Appalachian Basin of Pennsylvania, Eastern Ohio, Western New York, and Northern West Virginia. The firm also has extensive experience in matters relating to the financing of oil, gas, and coal operations and the restructuring of troubled credits for these industries. These financing engagements have taken the nature of general corporate loans, limited recourse deals, and project finance operations. Our coal related transactions have resulted in depth exposure to take or pay contracts and title issues concerning coal operations. Through our long term representation of our clients, we have gained in-depth experience of the industry and how it functions at every level.

Energy Representative Experience:

  • Obtained summary judgment for electric utility company on $2.3 million dollar negligence claim.
  • Defense of large utility in claim by numerous upstream landowners alleging that stream culvert owned by utility was causing flooding to properties.
  • Obtained trial judgment in favor of a local utility company in lawsuit brought by contractor who claimed that the utility wrongfully terminated their contract and that the utility’s associated conduct amounted to unjust enrichment and tortious interference.
  • Multi-year litigation before the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission to determine application of smart metering legislation.
  • Represented major electric utility in major engineering and construction disputes and in the defense of serious and permanent injury and wrongful death cases.
  • Represented national alternative energy business in real estate, construction, and contract litigation.
  • Defended regional utility company which was sued for automobile accident claims.
  • Part of the successful litigation team that represented a local utility in complex litigation over the ownership of underground vaults before the trial court and on appeal to the Superior Court.
  • Handled coal company’s breach of warranty claim on multi-million-dollar piece of equipment.
  • Defense verdict for oil and gas company in state court jury trial where Plaintiff demanded $1.4 million dollars on breach of lease dispute and royalty claims.
  • Disputes related to oil and gas leases.
  • Assisted in obtaining summary judgment and dismissal of plaintiff’s claims of conspiracy, tortious interference, breach of contract, and unjust enrichment in lawsuit concerning interpretation and negotiation of an oil and gas lease. This case created new law in Pennsylvania when the Superior Court affirmed the trial court’s ruling that the non-attorney consultant engaged in the unauthorized practice of law through drafting and negotiating an oil and gas lease.
  • Represented oil and gas producer, transporter, and processor in litigation against the federal government regarding drilling rights.
  • Successfully defended an oil and gas production company in litigation filed to terminate a dual purpose (production and storage) oil and gas lease.
  • Represented oil and gas owners in multi-party litigation related to failed and fraudulent transfer of title, defective title opinions, and royalty deductions.
  • Assisted various exploration and production companies with the due diligence review and valuation of assets in the acquisition, sale, and trade of assets in values ranging from $10 million to $735 million.
  • Assisted an exploration and production company with the due diligence review and valuation of assets in connection with the dissolution of a joint venture and divestment of $2.4 billion in assets.
  • Assisted an exploration and production company in numerous acquisitions and trades of assets ranging from $100,000 to $3 million through the drafting, reviewing, and negotiating of the acquisition or trade agreements and the associated closing instruments.
  • Prepared numerous drilling and division order title opinions for exploration and production companies identifying ownership of surface, mineral, and leasehold rights.
  • Worked closely with a petroleum industry business to conduct due diligence and implement a brand protection strategy for a formerly well-known and abandoned trademark in the industry.
  • Represented propane distribution company in two separate asset acquisitions totaling $8.9 million.
  • Prepared oil, gas, coal, and mineral title opinions and provided due diligence support and transactional assistance to the firm’s oil and gas clients.
  • Experience in all phases of oil and gas development including title matters, operations, production, sales, pipeline matters, financing, and mergers & acquisitions.
  • Advised owners of their pipeline rights of way and their rights to develop Marcellus Shale and other deep formations.
  • Counseled clients on the economic benefits available to them, the legal protections to be sought and the field operations needed to drill and operate Marcellus Shale wells.
  • Obtained summary judgement on behalf of an oil and gas exploration company dismissing the claims of thirteen plaintiffs who alleged that the operations created excessive noise, traffic, dust, light, air pollution and polluted their water supplies.  See Russell, et. al. v. Chesapeake Appalachia, L.L.C., 305 F.R.D. 78 (M.D. Pa. March 2, 2015).
  • Successfully represented an oil and gas exploration company in an action arising from a fatal injury at a well pad, resulting in the court issuing an opinion affirming the client’s right to protect investigative material ordered at the direction of counsel.  See Serrano v. Chesapeake Appalachia, et. al., W.D. PA 2:12cv1678 (W.D. PA).

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