Energy & Natural Resources Alert: The Ohio Supreme Court Rules on Applicability of 1989 and 2006 Dormant Mineral Acts:

Today, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled on 14 Ohio Dormant Mineral Act (“ODMA”) cases, finally resolving some of the most significant legal questions regarding oil and gas development in the state.  The Court issued three opinions, with the remaining cases decided by reference to those decisions.  The most significant ODMA interpretation from the Ohio Supreme Court was issued in Corban v. Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C. Slip Opinion No. 2016-Ohio-5796, the first opinion published, in which the Court ruled that: (1) the 1989 ODMA did not provide for the automatic vesting of severed mineral interests, but instead required that a surface owner … Read More

Energy & Natural Resources Alert: Pennsylvania Supreme Court Confirms that the Doctrine of Estoppel by Deed Applies to Oil and Gas Leases

In Shedden v. Anadarko E. & P. Co., L.P., No. 103 MAP 2014, 2016 WL 1228867 (Pa. Mar. 29, 2016), the lessors brought an action against Anadarko, seeking a declaration that an oil and gas lease purporting to cover their 62-acre property only covered 31 acres.  The lessors’ claim was based on the fact that at the time the parties agreed to the lease, the lessor only owned a one-half interest in the oil and gas underlying the 62-acre property and accepted a bonus payment under the lease for 31 net acres.  However, prior to bringing this action, the lessors … Read More

Energy & Natural Resources Alert: Ohio Fourth District Court of Appeals Further Defines the Terms “Paying Quantities” and “Operations” in Oil and Gas Leases

In Pottmeyer v. E. Ohio Gas Co., 4th Dist. Washington, 2016-Ohio-1294 (March 18, 2016), the landowners brought actions against the successors to the deep-rights-lessee, requesting that the court declare the oil and gas leases void because the secondary terms of the habendum clauses of the leases had expired. The successors to the deep-rights-lessee counterclaimed. The Fourth Appellate District of Ohio held: the landowners’ personal use of gas produced from the wells does not count towards the calculation of gas produced in paying quantities as required to maintain the leases; the sporadic and de minimus production of oil and gas from … Read More