Articles by C. Brannon Robertson

by: C. Brannon Robertson

An important environmental trespass case before the Texas Supreme Court was expected to answer the question of whether migrating saltwater and other disposed wastewaters could give rise to a trespass cause of action. In February of 2015, the Court issued its decision. Unfortunately, for those expecting an answer on the subsurface trespass question, the holding was a narrow one.Read more

by: C. Brannon Robertson

The Texas Railroad Commission has proposed expanding its pipeline permitting process, including requiring applicants to provide a sworn statement and documentation supporting any claim that a proposed pipeline will function as a common carrier line.Read more

by: C. Brannon Robertson

In Texas, exploration and production companies are generally shielded from subsurface trespass liability when they use fluids to stimulate production. Whether they are also shielded from liability when their disposed fluids cross property lines remains an open question, but one that will hopefully be decided shortly.Read more

by: Bruce Hurley, C. Brannon Robertson and Elizabeth Taber

A Texas jury recently rendered a verdict awarding $2.925 million arising out of personal injury claims based on medical problems allegedly caused by natural gas development.Read more

by: C. Brannon Robertson and Ron Palmer

Almost every oilfield services contract will contain some type of indemnity provision. Yet several oil-producing states have enacted statutory provisions that will, at times, render unenforceable an indemnification provision that purports to require indemnification for the indemnitee's own negligence.Read more

by: C. Brannon Robertson

It has a long been a rule in Texas that the mineral estate is dominant over the surface estate. This rule has taken on an increased importance recently with the shale boom driving increased E&P activity in the state.Read more

by: C. Brannon Robertson

Recently, a California federal court blocked drilling on certain federal land located in California’s Monterey Shale Formation play. The decision could have far-ranging effects concerning the types of fracking activities that BLM must consider when deciding to sell a lease.Read more

by: C. Brannon Robertson

The Texas Supreme Court’s latest decision on the statute of limitations and fraudulent concealment exception favors operators over royalty owners, but the decision creates potential pitfalls for oil & gas companies as well.Read more

by: C. Brannon Robertson

In Edwards Aquifer Authority v. Day, the Texas Supreme Court held that Texas property owners have an actual ownership interest in the groundwater beneath their property. While this holding does not directly address oil & gas issues, it may well affect the industry because petroleum production activities are frequently water-intensive.Read more

by: Jamie Miller and C. Brannon Robertson

This term, the U.S. Supreme Court is due to decide whether the EPA can seek civil penalties for violations of administrative orders without having to prove a statute, regulation, or law has been violated. Read more