Pittsburgh Gas Royalty Lawyer
The Marcellus Shale formation is a major source of natural gas and natural gas liquids (NGLS). The Marcellus Shale formation is below the surface of all of Western Pennsylvania and much of Northeast Pennsylvania. Oil and gas companies throughout the United States and beyond are already exploiting this natural gas reserve.
The Lease Agreement
Gas and oil companies typically negotiate the right to access a person's land in the form of a gas lease. In exchange for this access, a property owner is supposed to be compensated for the resources and the use of his or her land. They pay landowners an up-front bonus fee, usually a sum certain per acre leased, and the lease has a separate provision setting forth the percentage of royalty that the landowner is to be paid from production of natural gas and/or liquids extracted from the leased property.
There are many factors that go into proper calculation of what amount of money the landowner(s) may be entitled to receive. Unfortunately, many gas companies make improper deductions to royalty payments. As a result, many property owners are not being paid what is owed under the terms of their leases.
Recovering Unpaid Oil Royalties
If you believe that you have not been paid proper royalties pursuant to your oil and gas lease, you have the right to take legal recourse against the operator. You are entitled to compel the energy company to account for all production, sales and deductions from royalties, and recover any money that the energy company has refused or failed to pay.
The lawyers of Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C., have filed class-action lawsuits on behalf of property owners in Pennsylvania who have not been paid proper royalties. A class-action suit can be an efficient, effective means to help large numbers of people who have been wronged by the same entity.
Pennsylvania's Oil and Gas Law — Act 13
Pennyslvania's oil and gas law, Act 13, expressly forbids energy companies from passing along certain costs of removing and extracting natural gas to landowners, such as impact fees. Language concerning these deductions is often buried deep in the lease agreement.
If your lease contains a provision which purports to allow illegal deductions our attorney may still be able to help. We can determine whether any deductions were improper and whether any back payments are owed.
While Act 13 Prohibits deductions for impact fees, certain expenses may be deducted from royalty payments. Lease agreements often contain provisions allowing for gas royalty payments to be reducted by deduction of post-production expenses. Post-production expenses may include a variety of fuel-related expenses such as:
Whether or not the Lessee can deduct some or all of its post-production costs will vary from lease to lease, depending on the language. Our lawyers know how to interpret these provisions in order to make sure the landowner is being paid the full amount owed for royalties.
A Strong Legal Team to Protect Your Gas Lease Interests Now and in the Future
Even when it is in the wrong, an energy company will not back down easily. Taking on the oil and gas companies requires both strength and skill. A class-action lawsuit is often necessary to resolve back payments and ensure that future payments comply with the agreement.
Our lawyers understand the complex issues involved in claims against gas and oil companies that arise out of oil and gas lease disputes. If you enlist our services, we will be fully committed to helping you recover the royalties that are rightfully yours, and to make sure that the energy company is meeting all of its obligations under your oil and gas lease.
Contact a Pittsburgh Gas Royalty Attorney Today
Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C., has locations in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. Call 412-567-1232 if you live in Pittsburgh or Western Pennsylvania, 215-792-6153 in Philadelphia or Eastern Pennsylvania or toll free at 866-466-5789. You may also complete our online contact form. We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your claim.