General Business Civil Procedure Energy & Utilities

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Freedom to Contract Prevails in New Mexico

Is freedom to contract a good thing for everybody? First Baptist Church of Roswell v. Yates Petroleum Corp. says yes, and confirms that the public policy in New Mexico is freedom to contract. In this case, it was to avoid...more

Should You Pay for Something You’re Not Getting? The Pennsylvania Supreme Court Will Take Up Shedden v. Anadarko E&P Company, L.P.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court will consider whether an oil and gas lessee’s refusal to pay a “bonus” on acreage that the lease supposedly conveyed to it, but that the lessor did not own at the time of leasing and had not...more

Non-Incumbent Transmission Developers Win with Court’s Affirmance of FERC’s Order No. 1000

Non-incumbent transmission developers scored a big win last week. As we previously reported here, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld FERC’s Order No. 1000. Among other things, Order 1000 mandated that a regional...more

D.C. Circuit Rejects Challenges to FERC’s Order No. 1000

The court turned back all challenges to FERC’s order, which imposed major regional transmission planning requirements, concluding that FERC has adequately justified the order and acted within its statutory authority....more

Northern District of Texas Dismisses Bad Faith Claims in Well-Control Policy Dispute

Eagle Oil & Gas Co. v. Travelers Prop. Cas. Co. of Am., No. 7:12-cv-00133-O (N.D. Tex. Jul. 14, 2014) - Northern District of Texas dismisses bad faith claims against insurer and adjuster in dispute over coverage for...more

D.C. Circuit Upholds Order No. 1000, FERC’s Landmark Transmission Planning and Cost Allocation Rulemaking Order

On August 15, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit unanimously affirmed Order No. 1000, a landmark set of rules approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in 2011 to...more

CO2 is Good

In French vs. Occidental Permian, Ltd. the Texas Supreme Court held that costs associated with injection of carbon dioxide into a reservoir in a tertiary recovery operation were properly deducted from royalties. This...more

CO2 Separation Anxiety—Is the cost of separating CO2 from casinghead gas a “production” or “post-production” cost for purposes of...

In a recent decision, the Supreme Court of Texas concluded that the cost of removing carbon dioxide (“CO2”) from casinghead gas after completing enhanced oil recovery operations is a “post-production” cost, thus clarifying...more

MoFo New York Tax Insights - Volume 5, Issue 8 - August 2014

In This Issue: - Department Releases New Nonresident Audit Guidelines to Address Gaied - Nuclear Power Plant That Produces Steam and Water to Generate Electricity Is Not Eligible for Investment Tax...more

Illinois Appellate Court’s Expansive Interpretation of a Taxing Ordinance Swallows a Sale for Resale Exemption

The First District of the Illinois Appellate Court, in Ford Motor Company v. Chicago Department of Revenue, 2014 IL App (1st) 130597 (June 27, 2014), recently held that Ford Motor Company (Ford) owes City of Chicago vehicle...more

Rumsfeld, Morrison and the Discovery Rule in Texas

In August 1999, Brock and Tipton signed a Farm and Ranch Contract by which Tipton would acquire 519 acres in Montague County. (Lots of Brocks were parties to the contracts and the suit. I refer to them as one for...more

California Insurance Coverage Cases Raising Key Issues On The Horizon

This year, 2014, is lining up with interesting insurance coverage cases pending across the country which may lead to far reaching decisions. In California specifically, it is apparent to us that the Hartford Insurance...more

District Court Decertifies Class based on Dukes, Comcast and Tenth Circuit Precedent

Plaintiff sued for underpayment or nonpayment of royalties on natural gas produced from wells in Kansas due to defendant’s failure to place the gas in marketable condition. The district court initially certified the class in...more

Fifth Circuit Holds That a TPEE in a CGL Policy Can Exclude Pollution Claims Even in the Face of a UREC

What you need to know: The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, applying Texas law, held that a Total Pollution Exclusion Endorsement in a CGL Policy did not irreconcilably conflict with, and therefore was not superseded...more

The Accommodation Doctrine Revisited: A Question of "Fairness to Both Parties"

As Texas holds tight to its position as the nation's number one oil and natural gas producing state, the Texas Supreme Court's decision to revisit the over forty-year-old accommodation doctrine, which requires oil and gas...more

Iowa Supreme Court Allows Third-Party PPA to Move Forward

On Friday, July 11, the Supreme Court of Iowa issued a decision holding that a solar energy company entering into a third-party power purchase agreement (PPA) with an Iowa municipality would not be considered a public utility...more

Insurance Recovery Law - July 2014 #2

U.S. Bank Wins Coverage Under Delaware Law For $55 Million Overdraft-Related Settlement - Why it matters: In a victory worth tens of millions of dollars, a Minnesota federal court ruled that U.S. Bank is...more

“2 Sign or Not 2 Sign:” Which Statute of Frauds Governs Oil & Gas Leases?

In a recent decision, the Pennsylvania Superior Court resolved an open question of state law regarding which one of two alternative statutes of frauds apply to oil and gas leases, in the process making clear that for an oil...more

Fifth District Upholds CEQA Exemptions For Ongoing Pre-CEQA Projects And Continued Operation of Existing Facilities To Reject...

In a July 3, 2014 published decision more notable for the practical importance of the water rights involved than the CEQA law applied, the Fifth District Court of Appeal rejected the CEQA challenges of various environmental...more

Top 6 at 6: Highlights of the Top Climate Change Legal Stories in the First Half of 2014

Our semi-annual look at the top climate change legal stories is keyed on EPA. You hardly have to have been awake to be aware of the Clean Power Plan and UARG v. EPA. But other things have stirred the pot as well: three...more

FERC Versus State Authorities: Supreme Court Agrees to Review ONEOK v. Learjet

On July 1, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court granted a petition to hear an appeal by several companies contending that antitrust claims filed against them under state law over alleged manipulation of gas prices during the western...more

Texas Supreme Court Holds Cost to Remove Carbon Dioxide Injected in Enhanced Recovery Operations Is Properly Deductible from...

On June 27, the Supreme Court of Texas issued an opinion in Marcia Fuller French, et al v. Occidental Permian Ltd., No 12-002 (Tex. June 27, 2014), a case closely followed by the oil and gas industry. In its unanimous...more

Supreme Court Decides Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency

On June 23, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency, No. 12-1146, holding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) cannot require that a stationary...more

Texas Supreme Court weekly orders (6/14)

In its order list for June 20, 2014, the Texas Supreme Court issued opinions in eight cases and granted review in one case. In this post, I will summarize the opinions in four cases, and also describe the case in which the...more

Allen v. El Paso Pipeline GP Co., L.L.C., C.A. No. 7520-VCL (Del. Ch. May 19, 2014) (Laster, V.C.)

In this opinion, the Court of Chancery applied the two-pronged Tooley standard to determine whether a plaintiff’s breach of contract claims in the limited partnership context were derivative or direct. Finding such claims to...more

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