Oil and Gas Blog

Oil and gas development in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, the Marcellus Play, Utica play, or anywhere can present unique and complex issues that can be intimidating and challenging. It can produce lawsuits, litigation, negotiations and dispute resolution procedures. At Pennsylvania based Houston Harbaugh, P.C., our Oil and Gas Practice is dedicated to protecting the interests of landowners and royalty owners. From new lease negotiations to title disputes, to royalty litigation, in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia – Marcellus shale play, Utica shale play and elsewhere – we can help. Whether you have two acres in Washington County or 5,000 acres in Lycoming County, our dedication and commitment remains the same.
Articles posted in Royalties and Post-Production Costs

The New Royalty Bill is Good for Pennsylvania Landowners

On August 5, 2021, Rep. Eric Davanzo (R-Westmorland County) introduced HB 1763. The bill seeks to clarify Pennsylvania oil and gas law by defining the term “royalty”. It...
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Pennsylvania Superior Court Rules that Royalty Clause Referencing Both ‘Gross Proceeds’ and ‘At the Well’ Was Ambiguous

Let’s assume that you own 125 acres in Tioga County.  In 2017, you negotiate a new oil and gas lease with XYZ Drilling.  During the negotiations, you insist...
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Texas Supreme Court Issues Troubling Decision in Royalty Dispute

The practice of deducting post-production costs from landowner royalties remains a controversial and contentious issue here in Pennsylvania. Many landowners sought to insulate their royalties from such deductions...
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Texas Federal Court Rules No Royalty Due on Gas Used to Fuel Off-Lease Operations

The processing of natural gas and natural gas liquids requires a constant and reliable energy source. Critical operations such as compression, dehydration and fractionation cannot be conducted unless...
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Federal District Court in Pittsburgh Rules That 1897 Deed Did Not Grant a Non-Participating Royalty Interest

The calculation of production royalties and the deduction of post-production costs is a hot topic for landowners across Pennsylvania.  But there is another frustrating and often confusing royalty-related...
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The Net-Back Method Does Not Result In Better Pricing to Justify Deductions Under Market Enhancement Clauses

Many oil and gas leases in Pennsylvania contain a royalty clause known as a “market enhancement” clause. These clauses generally prohibit deductions unless the driller can demonstrate certain...
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Federal District Court Injects Confusion into Definition of Gross Royalty Under Pennsylvania Law

As the Marcellus Shale development enters its seventeenth year, drillers are becoming more creative and aggressive in their effort to avoid lease language that was intended to prohibit...
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Are February 2021 Production Royalty Payments Leaving you Out in the Cold?

On March 8, 2021, the Pennsylvania Attorney General announced a settlement of the lawsuit filed against Chesapeake Energy Corporation that challenged several of Chesapeake’s business practices. One of...
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Texas Supreme Court Rules That Gross Royalty Clause Prohibits Driller From Deducting Post-Production Costs

As the Marcellus Shale development enters its seventeenth year, drillers are becoming more creative and aggressive in their effort to avoid express lease language that was drafted to...
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About Us

Oil and gas development can present unique and complex issues that can be intimidating and challenging. At Houston Harbaugh, P.C., our oil and gas practice is dedicated to protecting the interests of landowners and royalty owners. From new lease negotiations to title disputes to royalty litigation, we can help. Whether you have two acres in Washington County or 5,000 acres in Lycoming County, our dedication and commitment remains the same.

We Represent Landowners in All Aspects of Oil and Gas Law

The oil and gas attorneys at Houston Harbaugh have broad experience in a wide array of oil and gas matters, and they have made it their mission to protect and preserve the landowner’s interests in matters that include:

  • New lease negotiations
  • Pipeline right-of-way negotiations
  • Surface access agreements
  • Royalty audits
  • Tax and estate planning
  • Lease expiration claims
  • Curative title litigation
  • Water contamination claims
Pittsburgh Oil and Gas Lawyer Robert Burnett attorney headshot

Robert Burnett

Robert’s practice is exclusively devoted to the representation of landowners and royalty owners in oil and gas matters. Robert is the Chair of the Houston Harbaugh’s Oil & Gas Practice Group and represents landowners and royalty owners in a wide array of oil and gas matters throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Robert assists landowners and royalty owners in the negotiation of new oil and gas leases as well as modifications to existing leases. Robert also negotiates surface use agreements and pipeline right-of-way agreements on behalf of landowners. Robert also advises and counsels clients on complex lease development and expiration issues, including the impact and effect of delay rental and shut-in clauses, as well as the implied covenants to develop and market oil and gas. Robert also represents landowners and royalty owners in disputes arising out of the calculation of production royalties and the deduction of post-production costs. Robert also assists landowners with oil and gas title issues and develops strategies to resolve and cure such title deficiencies. Robert also advises clients on the interplay between oil and gas leases and solar leases and assists clients throughout Pennsylvania in negotiating solar leases.

Head shot photo of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Oil and Gas Lawyer Brendan O'Donnell at Houston Harbaugh

Brendan A. O'Donnell

Brendan O’Donnell is a highly qualified and experienced attorney in the Oil and Gas Law practice. He also practices in our Environmental and Energy Practice. Brendan represents landowners and royalty owners in a wide variety of matters, including litigation and trial work, and in the preparation and negotiation of:

  • Leases
  • Pipeline right of way agreements
  • Surface use agreements
  • Oil, gas and mineral conveyances