Gray Reed & McGraw, P.C.

1601 Elm Street Suite 4600
Dallas, Texas 75201, United States

Contact: Michael Blachly

  • (214) 237-6370

Subcontractors Score a Victory in Federal Court

On August 27, in In re Heritage Consolidated, L.L.C., the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals granted subcontractor’s lien rights to two oil and gas drilling contractors. The Court reversed a district court ruling which upheld a…more

Appeals, Commercial Bankruptcy, Construction Industry, Liens, Mechanics Lien

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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 case…more

Carbon Capture and Sequestration, Carbon Emissions, Energy, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Oil & Gas

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A Cost-Free Royalty Clause That Works – Part Two: The Override

Welcome to part two of the hair-splitting decision in Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C. v. Hyder. See our prior post about the basic facts…more

Energy, Oil & Gas, Royalties

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Weighing in – 1.2 Billion Usernames and Passwords. What, Me Worry About CyberSecurity?

Last month one of our lead articles was Cyber Security: Forewarned is Fair-Warned. Last week the New York Times published an article reporting that at least 1.2 billion usernames and passwords were hacked by a Russian…more

Cyber Attacks, Cybersecurity, Data Breach, Hackers, Passwords

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Texas High Court Rules Improper Photography Law Unconsitutional; Or, Why You Care a Creepy Dude Is Not Guilty

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals ruled in a 8-1 decision yesterday that the “Improper Photography and Visual Recording Act” is facially unconstitutional. The case involved a guy who allegedly took pictures of kids at a water…more

Consent, Invasion of Privacy, Photographs

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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 the…more

Contract Disputes, Interest Payments, Oil & Gas, Royalties

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Pipeline Loses Effort To Condemn Private Land

Private property rights advocates scored a big victory in a Texas condemnation case in the ongoing battle between pipelines and landowners over the power of eminent domain. (See our last post for a decision with the opposite…more

Common Carriers, Eminent Domain, Liquid Natural Gas, Petroleum, Pipelines

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Ambiguity Sends An Overriding Royalty Dispute Back To The Trial Court

It must be maddening to non-lawyers that a large segment of an industry can operate in harmony by agreeing that a contract in widespread use means one thing, only to have party-crashers decide it means another…more

Ambiguous, Contract Disputes, Royalties, Trials

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Texas Well Integrity Rule Revised

The Texas Railroad Commission has clarified and strengthened Rule 13, relating to requirements for drilling, putting pipe down, and cementing wells. The amendment will go into effect on January 1, 2014…more

Amended Legislation, Fracking, Groundwater, Underground Injection Wells

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North Dakota Good Faith Purchasers: At What Point is Notice Relevant?

The Question - In order to be a good faith purchaser, a party must not have actual or constructive notice of another’s rights. Northern Oil and Gas v. Creighton asked, When should the determination of whether a party has…more

Commercial Leases, Constructive Notice, Mineral Leases, Oil & Gas

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The Duhig Rule – State By State

As promised in our last post, here is a state-by-state review of the Duhig Rule - who has adpoted it, who hasn’t, and who might. Texas – Duhig v. Peavey Moore Lumber Company, 135 Tex. 503, 144 S.W.2d 878 (1940) was a…more

Duhig Rule, Energy, Oil & Gas

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Open-Carriers Pose a Threat to Restaurants with Liquor Licenses

Regardless of their personal stance on any hot-button social issue, most business owners do not want their place of business to be the focus of demonstrations on that issue – wisely so, because rarely does being the focus of a…more

Chipotle Grill, Gun Laws, Gun Permits, Hospitality Industry, Licenses

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Does Filing for Bankruptcy Really Give You Tax Relief?

When times get desperate and tax liabilities pile up – filing for bankruptcy is an option many people consider. Taxes are “dischargable” in bankruptcy, but there are important rules you need to know…more

Consumer Bankruptcy, Income Taxes

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Shop ‘til You Drop – But Take a Day to Pray

Retail stores cannot force an employee to work seven consecutive days without giving the employee one day off to worship or rest. Like the ADA, retail stores must also accommodate the religious beliefs of employees unless it…more

Employee Rights, Reasonable Accommodation, Religion, Retailers, Undue Hardship

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Title Troubles In Texas, North Dakota And Montana: Right Of Way v. Fee Conveyance

If you examine titles or read title opinions, this post is for you. I was recently examining instruments for an East Texas title opinion when I came across an instrument that, at first glance, appeared to be an easement…more

Contract Drafting, Easements, Quitclaim Deeds, Title Examination

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Deepwater Horizon Settlement Fine-Tuned By Fifth Circuit

The Fifth Circuit has taken steps to fine-tune the interpretation and implementation of the agreement BP negotiated to settle its massive liabilities arising from the April 2010 oil spill following the explosion of the Deepwater…more

Deepwater Horizon, Gulf Oil Spill, Settlement

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Qualified Domestic Relations Orders: Little-Known Issues Involving Dividend Pass-Through Elections And Same-Sex Spouses

As most family law practitioners are aware, ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code (“IRC”) do not permit a participant in a retirement plan to assign or alienate his/her interest in that plan to another person. These rules are…more

ERISA, QDRO, Retirement Plan, Same-Sex Marriage

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In Wyoming, a Higher Burden for Chemical Disclosure Exemption?

In Powder River Basin Resource Council v. Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, the Wyoming Supreme Court held that the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has the burden of justifying the use of trade secrets…more

Chemicals, Disclosure Requirements, Fracking, Hazardous Substances, Oil & Gas

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Non-Operators Shake Off The JOA Tar Baby

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…more

Assignments, Joint Operating Agreement, Oil & Gas, Successor Liability

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The 1956 Model Form JOA Does Not Apply To Future Leases

I learned to drive on an old, black, stick-shift, straight-six, no-radio, no-A/C automobile manufactured the year after the AAPL’s first Form 610 - Model Form Operating Agreement was created. The ’57 Chevy is now considered a…more

Contract Drafting, Joint Operating Agreement, Leases, Oil & Gas

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Hold On To Your Insurance … Federal Court Certifies Deepwater Horizon Questions To Texas Supreme Court

BP’s woes from the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf continue. The federal Fifth Circuit in In re: Deepwater Horizon, withdrew an opinion of a three-judge panel and certified questions for consideration by the Supreme Court…more

BP, Commercial General Liability Policies, Deepwater Horizon, Gulf Oil Spill, Insurers

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Deepwater Horizon Settlement Fine-Tuned By Fifth Circuit

The Fifth Circuit has taken steps to fine-tune the interpretation and implementation of the agreement BP negotiated to settle its massive liabilities arising from the April 2010 oil spill following the explosion of the Deepwater…more

Deepwater Horizon, Gulf Oil Spill, Settlement

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Don’t Be A Target: Mitigating Liability From Cyber Attacks

During the holiday season, Bullseye, a big box retailer, was the victim of a cyber attack that compromised the credit and debit card information (including PIN and CVV codes) of nearly 40 million of its customers. The attack…more

Cyber Attacks, Cybersecurity, Data Breach, Data Protection, Target

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Confusing Expiration Labels Cost Texas Restaurants

All restaurants have to deal with the issue of throwing away food at the end of the day. According to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a powerful environmental action group and the Harvard Food Law and Policy…more

Resorts & Restaurants, Restaurant Industry

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Confusing Expiration Labels Cost Texas Restaurants

All restaurants have to deal with the issue of throwing away food at the end of the day. According to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a powerful environmental action group and the Harvard Food Law and Policy…more

Resorts & Restaurants, Restaurant Industry

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What Does “Sprawling Litigation” Look Like?

It looks like what you’d expect: a bunch of litigants spending lots of time at a courthouse in Goliad, Texas, with no end in sight. After much ”sprawl” in Harkins v. Northshore Energy it came down to the meaning of this property…more

Commercial Leases, Mineral Leases, Oil & Gas, Well Drilling

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Treachery of the Untrustworthy Trustee

In 2006, Fred Houston created the Fred L. Houston Trust and placed into it the Tenneco lease, which had been producing since 1974. Ms. Williams was the trustee. The trust instrument declared the trust “… irrevocable and may not…more

Energy, Estate Planning, Oil & Gas, Spendthrift Trusts, Trusts

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Implied Warranties: Part One (Goods)

Texas law imposes certain implied warranties on the sale of goods, regardless of whether the warranties are mentioned in the contract. In particular, Texas law creates the warranty of “merchantability” and the warranty that the…more

Fitness for Particular Purpose, Warranties

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Mixed Result In A Louisiana Legacy Pollution Case

The Dietz family sued several lessees for injunctive relief and restorative damages arising out of leases on two non-contiguous tracts in Acadia Parish. In Dietz, et al. v. Superior Oil Company, et al the trial court granted…more

Contaminated Properties, Groundwater, Oil & Gas, Premature Claims, Ripeness

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Trespassers – Can You Shoot ‘Em?

Under the law, anyone who enters your property is an invitee, licensee or a trespasser. You can summon an invitee, like a pizza delivery driver. An invitee generally enters the property for the parties’ mutual benefit – usually…more

Homicide, Liability, Trespass

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Are Personal Injury Damages Avaiable in a Nuisance Case?

As promised, on May 22, today’s post is a study of the personal injury issues raised by the defendants in Parr v. Aruba. In this post we raise the question and discuss what the parties believe the answer should be…more

Bodily Injury, Hazardous Substances, Nuisance, Toxic Exposure

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Areas of Practice
  • Agriculture
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
  • Appellate Practice
  • Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law
  • Bankruptcy
  • Business Organizations
  • Class Action
  • Commercial Law & Contracts
  • Construction Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Debtor/Creditor
  • Elections & Politics
  • Energy & Utilities
  • Environmental Law
  • Family Law
  • Finance & Banking
  • Health
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Law & Trade
  • Labor & Employment Law
  • Litigation
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Personal Injury
  • Products Liability
  • Real Estate
  • Securities Law
  • Taxation
  • Toxic Torts
  • Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning
  • Zoning, Planning & Land Use
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Locations
Other U.S. Locations
  • Texas
Number of Attorneys

100+ Attorneys

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