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Energy & the Law

Category Archives: Operating Agreements

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Perils of “Other Provisions” in the Model Form JOA

Posted in Operating Agreements, Purchase and Sale Agreements

Scriveners, when you add those “Other Provisions” in Article XVI of your model from JOA’s, are you sure that the document remains internally consistent, that no “Other Provision” conflicts with the form? … Are you mindful of which of two related contracts will govern if there is a conflict in provisions? Did you choose the correct one?… Continue Reading

Operator Wins JOA Fight

Posted in Contract Disputes, Operating Agreements

MDU Barnett Ltd. P’ship v. Chesapeake Exploration Ltd. P’ship is at least three things: The culmination of an unhappy relationship between an operator and non-operators. What happens when joint owners’ interests are not aligned. Predictable, given Texas law and the relationship of parties under the model form JOA. In 2005 Chesapeake and Conglomerate Gas entered into an Exploration and Development Agreement involving Barnett Shale properties…. Continue Reading

Non-Operators Shake Off the JOA Tar Baby

Posted in Operating Agreements

Co-author Andrew Neal Non-operators have had a lot in common with Br’er Rabbit ever since 2006, when the Texas Supreme Court surprised the industry in Seagull Energy E & P, Inc. v. Eland Energy, Inc. Their tar baby is the ruling that, absent a release from the operator a working interest under a JOA who assigns his interest to… Continue Reading

Unrecorded Override Assignment Trumps the Public Records Doctrine

Posted in Land Titles, Lease Disputes, Operating Agreements

Lawyers and landmen are taught that a document affecting real or immovable property not recorded in the public records means nothing to a stranger. Like O. J.’s quest for the real killer, lower premiums after the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, and the present I would have given my wife except I forgot our… Continue Reading

Yes, Virginia,There is an MUI Claus(e)

Posted in Operating Agreements

By Travis Booher History tells us that the young friends of Virginia O’Hanlon broke the news to her that there was no Santa Claus. When she quizzed her father about Santa’s existence, Dad’s fatherly advice was to ask the local newspaper.  ”If you see it in The Sun, it’s so.” You know the rest of that story. Another… Continue Reading

Operator Not Liable for Breach of JOA – Louisiana Version (Kind of)

Posted in Operating Agreements

It’s deju vu all over again in Chesapeake Operating, Inc. v. Sanchez Oil & Gas Corp. More accurately, it is a variation of Reeder v. Wood County Energy, LLC, et al. applied to Louisiana operations. For the impact of the exculpatory clause protecting the operator from liability in the 1989 Model Form JOA, see my post (co-authored by Marty Averill),… Continue Reading