• October 9, 2015

    OW Bunker Gets A Few More Days Of Exclusivity In Ch. 11

    Marine fuel shipper O.W. Bunker will get a few more days of exclusive control over a bankruptcy that blindsided observers last fall, receiving a ruling Friday that temporarily staves off a hostile creditor’s bid for liquidation. 

  • October 9, 2015

    SandRidge Energy Agrees To $38M Deal In Shareholder Suits

    An Oklahoma federal judge gave a preliminary nod Friday to SandRidge Energy Inc.'s $38 million deal to partially settle shareholder derivative claims over the 2013 ouster of CEO Tom Ward that came amid a chorus of criticism from investors over perceived wrongdoings.

  • October 9, 2015

    Texas High Court Revives Wyatt Appeal For Hurt Workers

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday agreed to revive a bid for mandamus relief against Wyatt Field Service Co. by two workers injured in an Exxon Mobil Corp. refinery steam explosion, after previously denying their petition four months ago.

  • October 9, 2015

    Fed. Circ. Backs BLM In Wyo. Oil And Gas Leases Dispute

    The Federal Circuit on Friday sided with the Bureau of Land Management in a row over the suspension of oil and gas leases in a mineral-rich area of Wyoming, rejecting a geologic consulting firm’s claim that the move marked a taking of its property interests in 26 leases.

  • October 9, 2015

    Feds Told To Speed Review Of Drilling Plan For Tribal Site

    A D.C. federal judge on Thursday ordered the federal government to decide by Nov. 23 whether it will seek to cancel or lift a suspension on Solenex LLC’s natural gas permit on land sacred to Montana’s Blackfeet Nation, slamming the government's proposed schedule to resolve the nearly 30-year suspension of the lease as unreasonable.

  • October 9, 2015

    US Judge OKs Ch. 11 Plan For Railway In Quebec Train Blast

    A Maine bankruptcy judge on Friday confirmed the bankruptcy plan of Montreal Maine & Atlantic Railway Ltd., whose fortunes plummeted after a fiery 2013 oil train derailment that killed 47 people in the town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec.

  • October 9, 2015

    Gas Right Reservation Didn't End With Lease, Pa. Court Says

    The Pennsylvania Superior Court issued a precedential decision Friday finding that explicit language is required in land deals to release reservations of oil and gas rights under lease by landowners at the time they agree to sell their properties.

  • October 9, 2015

    Calif. Law Requires Public Pensions To Divest Coal Stakes

    California Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday signed into law a bill requiring the state's two massive public pension funds to sell off their stakes in thermal coal, the first law of its kind in the country.

  • October 9, 2015

    Texas High Court Won't Rehear Kachina Pipeline Contract Row

    The Texas Supreme Court refused to reconsider its ruling that an agreement between Kachina Pipeline Co. and a developer didn’t entitle the company to deduct the costs of compression from its payments to the developer, according to a decision issued Friday.

  • October 9, 2015

    Cheniere Energy Exec Hit With SEC Insider Trading Suit

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed suit in Connecticut federal court Friday, accusing an executive at Cheniere Energy Inc. of giving a college friend inside information about the natural gas company.

  • October 9, 2015

    W.Va. Residents Can Pursue Chemical Spill Claims As Class

    A West Virginia federal judge has certified a class of individuals and business owners accusing American Water Works and Eastman Chemical of complicity in a January 2014 chemical spill that left 300,000 without drinking water, but eliminated plaintiffs’ ability to collect damages from the companies as a class.

  • October 9, 2015

    NJ Judge Again Blocks Intervenors In $225M ExxonMobil Deal

    A New Jersey judge who approved a controversial $225 million payout from ExxonMobil Corp. to settle contamination claims denied the second attempt Friday by the deal's detractors to join the litigation in order to stop a deal they say undervalues natural resource damages.

  • October 9, 2015

    WTO Sets Deadline For US Compliance In China CVD Row

    A World Trade Organization arbitrator on Friday gave the U.S. government an April 1 deadline to comply with a decision that faulted U.S. countervailing duties on a slew of Chinese imports, including solar panels, wind towers and oil pipes.

  • October 9, 2015

    Feds Push New Rail Track Inspection Standards

    Federal railroad officials on Friday called for more thorough track inspections after finding that the February derailment in West Virginia of a CSX Transportation Inc. train carrying crude oil was caused by a broken rail, the government’s latest push to tighten regulations following several fiery derailments.

  • October 9, 2015

    House Approves Bill To Lift Crude Oil Export Ban

    The U.S. House of Representatives on Friday passed legislation that would lift a decades-old ban on exports of crude oil from the U.S., as well as reauthorizing funding for an auxiliary fleet of private sea vessels able to support military transportation needs.

  • October 9, 2015

    Fish And Wildlife Appeals Eagle Permit Ruling To 9th Circ.

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Thursday filed an intent to appeal to the Ninth Circuit an August decision striking down its rule lengthening the duration of permits to “take” bald and golden eagles from five years to 30 years.

  • October 9, 2015

    EPA Water Rule Blocked Nationwide By 6th Circ.

    The Sixth Circuit on Friday stayed a controversial federal rule clarifying the scope of the Clean Water Act while it sorts out whether the courts of appeal or district courts have jurisdiction to handle challenges filed by various states and private parties.

  • October 8, 2015

    5th Circ. Bars Some Fishers' Oil Spill Claims Against Barge Co.

    The Fifth Circuit on Thursday partially upheld a ruling that let a group of fishers proceed with their claims against American Commercial Lines LLC over an oil spill that tainted fishing grounds along the Mississippi River, but the appeals court booted some of the plaintiffs for pursuing litigation too soon after filing their Oil Pollution Act claims.

  • October 8, 2015

    Patriot Coal’s Ch.11 Plan Gets Nod From Judge

    A Virginia bankruptcy judge on Thursday approved Patriot Coal Corp.’s Chapter 11 plan, which is centered on a deal to sell the majority of its operating mines to Blackhawk Mining LLC as part of a complex transaction announced last month.

  • October 8, 2015

    Pa. Gas Tax Specter Still Looms Despite House Vote

    Despite a vote by Pennsylvania lawmakers on Wednesday rejecting Gov. Tom Wolf’s proposal to enact a severance tax on natural gas drillers, experts say the ongoing push by Democrats for a new levy on production would continue to cast a potentially growth-hampering pall on the industry.

Expert Analysis

  • 10 Ways To Become A 360-Degree Lawyer

    Rosario Lozada Schrier

    Whether you’re a millennial joining the profession or a seasoned veteran, the challenges posed by the current legal market compel everyone to adapt and innovate. Law professors Rosario Schrier and Annette Torres team up to offer 10 tips to develop a more diverse skill set.

  • Phishing For Coverage: When Is Fraud A 'Computer Fraud'?

    John C. Pitblado

    As the calendar has turned to October — aka “Cybersecurity Awareness Month” — cyberinsurance industry watchers continue to seek clarity on what exactly constitutes “computer fraud.” A look at three recent cases in New York and Texas reveals the ways courts are struggling with this issue, says John Pitblado of Carlton Fields Jorden Burt.

  • Springtime For 'Implementation Day' On Iran Sanctions

    Baruch Weiss

    The lifting of Iranian-related sanctions under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on "Implementation Day," which is set for spring 2016, will have little impact on the ability of U.S. persons to do business with Iran. The embargo will remain in place and the U.S. will continue to enforce stringent controls on Iran-related transactions by U.S. persons, foreign entities owned or controlled by a U.S. person and foreign persons loc... (continued)

  • The State Of DOL's Whistleblower Protection Program

    Matthew S. Stiff

    While substantial room for progress remains, the U.S. Department of Labor's shortcomings in enforcing federal whistleblower protections are largely due to insufficient resources, not a lack of commitment to whistleblowers, says Matthew Stiff of Katz Marshall & Banks LLP.

  • Hitachi Underscores Need For Robust FCPA Due Diligence

    Mark Mendelsohn

    A recent action against Hitachi Ltd. is further evidence of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s ability to use its expansive reach under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act’s accounting provisions to police bribery and bribery-related conduct that it may not be able to reach under the anti-bribery provisions, say attorneys with Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP.

  • Calculating Damages In Securities Contract Breach Cases

    Marcia Kramer Mayer

    A Florida state court decision in Kozel v. Kozel, involving Gulf Keystone Petroleum founder Todd Kozel, joins a long line of authority developed in multiple states over the last 38 years that provides a predictable and objective method to compute damages for delayed delivery of stock, say members of NERA Economic Consulting and Fisher & Bendeck PL.

  • Migratory Birds Of A Feather Don't Always Flock Together

    Laura G. Zagar

    The scope of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act's take prohibition has become a key issue in the energy industry, both in the criminal and civil context, and the Fifth Circuit's ruling in United States v. Citgo Petroleum Co. that the MBTA's take prohibition is limited to only intentional take of migratory birds further widens a circuit split and perpetuates regulatory uncertainty, say attorneys at Perkins Coie LLP.

  • Fall Of Fracking Rule: When Agencies Don’t Consult Tribes

    Troy A. Eid

    A Wyoming federal judge's recent decision enjoining, on a nationwide basis, the Bureau of Land Management from enforcing its final rule related to hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian lands marks a milestone in using lack of tribal consultation as a sword in litigation, says Troy Eid, a shareholder at Greenberg Traurig LLP and former U.S. attorney for the District of Colorado.

  • Can Calif. Gov. Still Hit His Climate Change Goals?

    While the California Legislature's failure to pass S.B. 32 and amendments to S.B. 350 and A.B. 1288 have been noted by some commentators as setbacks for Gov. Jerry Brown's environmental and energy agenda, the governor may be able to achieve his original goals through the Air Resources Board, say attorneys at Latham & Watkins LLP.

  • 5 Things Clients Never Tell Their Lawyers

    Francis Drelling

    Given the times we live in, it is almost inevitable that everyone will, sooner or later, need to consult with legal counsel. With that in mind, I thought it might be interesting to discuss a few things that clients just won't tell their lawyers, says Francis Drelling, general counsel of Specialty Restaurants Corp.