Oil & Gas Law
Advising clients with respect to oil and gas leasing has become an important service offered by our attorneys for clients in Lycoming and surrounding counties. Dale A. Tice, Martin A. Flayhart and L. Craig Harris have been involved in representing numerous landowners with respect to negotiations with gas companies for leasing of their properties. Among the services we offer are the following:
Oil and Gas Lease Review and Negotiation
Our attorneys can advise clients to help them avoid the potential pitfalls in the gas leasing process and negotiate the best lease possible for their particular property. We recognize that clients may have unique concerns for their property and can assist in addressing those issues with the oil and gas companies as properties are developed for natural gas production. We can also provide guidance in evaluating the status of existing leases when properties are being bought and sold.
As natural gas development progresses many landowners are dealing with pipeline construction. Development of the pipeline infrastructure is a critical need for the oil and gas industry and landowners may negotiate increased payments and increased protection for their land in the pipeline negotiation process. Granting an easement for a pipeline is a long-term commitment that landowners must carefully consider when approached with a pipeline agreement.
Division Order Review
Landowners with property that is included in a natural gas production unit will often be asked to sign a document called a division order before royalties are paid. We can assist in verifying that the calculations of the landowner's decimal interest are correct and advise as to the issues of concern when executing a division order.
Purchase and Sale of Oil and Gas Rights
Many landowners in the Marcellus Shale region have been approached with offers to purchase oil and gas rights. We can assist landowners in evaluating a purchase offer and provide guidance in obtaining a fair valuation of their oil and gas rights. In addition, we can provide services to verify title to oil and gas rights for a property prior to purchase or sale.
Gas Development Status Assessment
Marcellus property owners are sometimes uncertain as to the current status of their property with regard to drilling and development. In many cases people own leased land as a vacation property or oil and gas rights for investment purposes and may have questions about nearby activity. We can assist in determining if your property has been included in a drilling production unit and the current status of drilling in your area.
Limited Liability Companies - Family Limited Partnerships
Signing the oil and gas lease and division order are only the first steps in owning and managing oil and gas rights. We recognize that in some cases there are significant advantages to using a limited liability company or family limited partnership with regard to tax and estate planning and liability issues. We can assist in evaluating if this strategy would be appropriate for your family and prepare all of the necessary documents to form the entities and transfer ownership of property or oil and gas rights to the family company.