Energy

  • August 16, 2017

    Statoil, Chief Counsel Get Ex-Exec's Sanction Bid Nixed

    A Texas federal judge on Wednesday rejected a bid from a former Statoil unit's chief technology officer to sanction the company and its chief counsel, one day after the ex-executive alleged there was an unethical agreement in place to pay a corporate representative $250 an hour for her “favorable” testimony.

  • August 16, 2017

    6th Circ. Backs Hemlock’s $793M Win In Supply Contract Row

    A Sixth Circuit panel on Wednesday upheld Hemlock Semiconductor Corp.’s $793 million damages win and a $3.5 million attorneys' fees award in a supply contract dispute with a SolarWorld unit, rejecting the argument that a lower court shouldn’t have struck SolarWorld’s defense that the agreements the companies had were illegal.

  • August 16, 2017

    Latham Steers Mexican Energy SPAC's Landmark $650M IPO

    Latham & Watkins LLP said Tuesday it advised private equity-backed Vista Oil & Gas, an energy-focused special purpose acquisition company, in raising $650 million through Mexico's first initial public offering of a SPAC.

  • August 16, 2017

    Materia May Be Infringing After $1.5M Verdict, Evonik Says

    Materia Inc. must immediately turn over sales and production data to show whether the company has been flouting a $1.5 million patent infringement verdict that Evonik Degussa GmbH won over a chemical bond component Materia makes, Evonik said Wednesday.

  • August 16, 2017

    Deals Rumor Mill: Teva, Petrobras, Thyssenkrupp

    Teva Pharmaceuticals is seeking partners to help fund its development pipeline, Brazilian prosecutors will investigate a $892 million deal involving state-controlled oil giant Petrobras, and Thyssenkrupp has not set a deadline for when it will decide on a potential merger of its European steel business with that of India's Tata Steel.

  • August 16, 2017

    10th Circ. Won't Budge On Chaparral Lease After BIA Redo

    The Tenth Circuit stayed firm Tuesday in its conclusion that an appeal in a dispute over the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ approval of an oil and gas lease and drilling permits between an Osage Nation council and Chaparral Energy LLC is moot.

  • August 16, 2017

    Occidental Fights Landowners' Cert. Bid In Sinkhole Suit

    Occidental Chemical Corp. asked a Louisiana federal judge on Tuesday to block a bid for class certification by landowners suing over a massive sinkhole that opened near the underground operations of Texas Brine Co., saying proposed class members are not bound by a common issue.

  • August 16, 2017

    Hedge Fund Elliott Settles With AkzoNobel, Ups BHP Stake

    Activist hedge fund Elliott Advisors on Wednesday settled its battle with AkzoNobel stemming from the Dutch coatings and chemicals company’s rejection of a €26.9 billion buyout offer, the same day it also upped its stake in mining and petroleum giant BHP Billiton as part of an ongoing push to sell underperforming assets.

  • August 16, 2017

    $400M Petrobras Row Must Be Arbitrated: Marine Chain Co.

    A Spanish marine chain manufacturer urged a Texas federal court on Tuesday to pause for arbitration a $400 million lawsuit initiated by Petrobras America Inc. and its insurers over an allegedly defective component in Petrobras’ offshore oil and gas operations, saying things have changed since the court refused a similar bid.

  • August 16, 2017

    Solar Co. Yingli Wins Dismissal From Securities Fraud Suit

    A California federal judge on Tuesday dismissed solar power firm Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. from a securities fraud case brought by investors that accused the company of making false public statements about a Chinese government program and money it was owed, deciding there weren’t sufficient facts to sustain the suit.

  • August 16, 2017

    Chinese Solar Cell Maker Sues Commerce Over Subsidy Duty

    Two units of Chinese manufacturer BYD Co. Ltd. sued the U.S. Department of Commerce in the U.S. Court of International Trade on Monday, alleging flawed methodology in a review of photovoltaic cells from China factored into a 17.5 percent subsidy duty.

  • August 16, 2017

    Exxon, Shell Info Bid Stays Mostly Intact In $1.8B Award Row

    A Manhattan federal judge on Tuesday rejected most of the objections lodged by Nigeria’s central bank against a request from Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell PLC subsidiaries to access information on foreign accounts in their efforts to enforce a $1.8 billion arbitration award against the country’s state-owned oil company.

  • August 16, 2017

    Gov't Is Owner In Navajo Land Uranium Cleanup Suit: Judge

    An Arizona federal judge on Tuesday ruled that the federal government qualifies under environmental cleanup law as an owner of more than a dozen old uranium sites on Navajo Nation land and could be liable for cleaning up the area.

  • August 16, 2017

    Crystallex Wants Venezuelan Co. Stock Taken For $1.2B Award

    Canadian mining company Crystallex International Co. has sought to block Venezuela from escaping a $1.2 billion arbitration award over a canceled mining contract, asking a Delaware federal court Monday to seize shares of a U.S. corporation owned by a Venezuelan state-run oil company.

  • August 15, 2017

    Shareholder Suit Over SolarCity Stock Drop Tossed

    A California federal judge has dismissed a proposed class action accusing SolarCity Corp. of lying to investors about its finances as demand for solar power waned in 2015, finding that the shareholders failed to point to statements by the company and its executives that violated the Securities and Exchange Act.

  • August 15, 2017

    3rd Circ. Says NRC's Rules Trump ADA In Worker Firing Suit

    The Third Circuit on Tuesday said Pennsylvania Power & Light Co. did not violate the Americans with Disabilities Act by firing a security officer at a nuclear power plant who purportedly grappled with mental health issues and alcoholism, finding the move protected under U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission guidelines.

  • August 15, 2017

    Energy Litigation Team Joins Shackelford Bowen In Dallas

    Shackelford Bowen McKinley & Norton LLP announced Monday it had picked up an experienced trial lawyer and his team to help boost the firm’s energy litigation practice.

  • August 15, 2017

    DC Circ. Tosses Sierra Club's Freeport LNG Export Fight

    The D.C. Circuit on Tuesday rejected the Sierra Club’s challenge to the U.S. Department of Energy’s decision to give Freeport LNG Expansion LP the green light to export liquefied natural gas from a Texas-based facility.

  • August 15, 2017

    Slawson Exploration Gets OK To Drill During Tribal Row

    A federal judge gave Slawson Exploration Co. Inc. the green light Tuesday to continue drilling operations in North Dakota while the Interior Board of Land Appeals hears a challenge by the Mandan, Hidatsa & Arikara Nation.

  • August 15, 2017

    Statoil, Chief Counsel Face Sanctions Bid From Former Exec

    A former Statoil unit chief technology officer entered an emergency bid for sanctions against the energy company and its chief counsel on Tuesday, alleging that the chief counsel violated federal law and the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct when he agreed to pay a corporate representative $250 an hour to testify.

Expert Analysis

  • Series

    Notes From A Law Firm Chief Privacy Officer: CPO Vs. CISO

    Mark McCreary

    To understand the role of the law firm chief privacy officer — and why that person ought to be a lawyer — it’s important to distinguish the role they fill from that of the chief information security officer, says Mark McCreary, chief privacy officer for Fox Rothschild LLP.

  • 5 Questions To Ask Before Entering Joint-Representation AFA

    Natalie Hanlon Leh

    One growing trend is for clients to enter into alternative fee arrangements in which one law firm represents multiple parties who “share” fees and costs in a related matter. This way parties can more efficiently manage a matter and reduce their individual legal fees. But joint representation is not without its own risks and challenges, say attorneys with WilmerHale.

  • Legal Incubators Can Help New Lawyers And Society

    Martin Pritikin

    Legal incubators serve as an important bridge to practice and a crucial step toward aligning the incentives of new lawyers with the needs of their clients. They may even pose a threat to the traditional law school model itself, and that's not necessarily a bad thing, says Martin Pritikin, dean of Concord Law School at Kaplan University.

  • Even An Unsigned Email Can Be A Legally Binding Contract

    Jonathan Jaffe

    A Texas appeals court recently held that an email exchange constituted a signed legally enforceable contract. The ruling is a reminder that parties negotiating contracts in email should generally avoid making unconditional statements, and classic contractual terms such as “offer,” “acceptance” and “agreement” should be used with care, say attorneys with Mayer Brown LLP.

  • The Working Capital Adjustment Dispute That Never Was

    Brian Lamb

    In Chicago Bridge & Iron v. Westinghouse Electric, the Delaware Supreme Court held rather decisively that a buyer could not avoid a liability bar by couching its concerns over historical financial statements as a working capital adjustment dispute. It is possible, however, to draft language that would lead to a different result than the one in this case, say Brian Lamb and Anthony Rospert of Thompson Hine LLP.

  • Puerto Rico Bondholders Share The Pain

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    Recent actions by Puerto Rico’s oversight board create a relatively broad band of recovery levels for bondholders. Investor uncertainty will likely persist for the near and medium terms, says Bradley Wendt of Charles River Associates.

  • Mineral Liens Can Be Contractually Waived In Texas

    Brian Mitchell

    The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas recently held that an advance contractual waiver of mineral liens contained in a master service agreement between an oil and gas operator and multiple oilfield service companies was enforceable. The case is likely to influence future drafting and negotiation of master services agreements, say Brian Mitchell and Clark Donat of Bracewell LLP.

  • How New York State Is Making Energy Storage A Priority

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    In June, the New York State Legislature passed the Energy Storage Deployment Program bill to incentivize greater use of energy storage technologies. This will be a critical piece of a multipronged strategy to flatten the peaks and troughs of the daily electricity load profile and enable high penetration of intermittent renewables, say Thomas Puchner and Kevin Blake of Phillips Lytle LLP.

  • How To Prioritize Your Law Firm's Crisis Response Plan

    Michelle Samuels

    If the media is going to cover your law firm’s crisis, they are going to cover it with or without your firm’s input. But your involvement can help shape the story and improve your firm’s image in the public eye, says Michelle Samuels, vice president of public relations at Jaffe.

  • Weekly Column

    Innovating For Wise Juries: Closing Argument

    Stephen Susman

    In the final article in this series on proposed innovations to the American jury trial, Stephen Susman, Richard Lorren Jolly and Dr. Roy Futterman of the NYU School of Law Civil Jury Project sum up the improvements they believe the U.S. jury system desperately needs.