Oil and Gas Unitization Law and Policy

Monday, December 14, 2020 - 2:00pm - 5:15pm
Location: ZOOM


Greg Russell, Vorys, Sater
Heidi Gorovitz Robertson, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law 
Cory Haydocy, Ohio Oil and Gas Commission 
Pat Martin, Louisiana State University Law
Keith Hall, Louisiana State University Law
Daniel Martin, Assistant Attorney General, State of Ohio

As a result of shale development, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Oil and Gas Resources, is facing a number of circumstances that are new to Ohio, and many laws and ODNR policies may still be still developing.  This CLE event will feature Ohio and national experts to provide insight into best practices for oil and gas unitization to the Ohio oil and gas legal and regulatory community. 

Registration $75 (seeking CLE credit) and $25 (non-CLE credit).  Register here.


2:00 – 2:10      Introduction and Welcome. CSU Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.  Speakers:  Deans of the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law and Levin College of Urban Affairs, Chairman of the Ohio Oil and Gas Commission.

2:10 – 4:00      Ohio Unitization Law.  Panelists:  Greg Russell, Partner and Energy Group Leader, Vorys Sater law firm; Heidi Gorovitz Robertson, Professor of Law and Environmental Studies, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law and Levin College of Urban Affairs; Cory Haydocy, Director, Ohio Oil and Gas Commission; Daniel Martin, Assistant Attorney General, State of Ohio.

2:10-2:40  Basics of Unitization Law and Procedure - Greg Russell

  • Why is unitization law needed?
  • When and how can properties be unitized?
  • What is the procedure? 
  • Oil and Gas Division Jurisdiction – how and when can disputed leases be part of an ODNR Oil and Gas Division order?
  • When does ODNR get involved.  and what level of ODNR review?  When not?
  • How are units shaped? 
  • Statutory Unitization law and procedure

2:40-3:05 Landowner Perspectives on Unitization - Heidi Gorovitz Robertson

  • Landowner rights under Unitization Agreements
  • Current practices on Penalty/Interest for Statutorily Unitized Land Owners
  • Takings defenses. 
  • Statutory Unitization of Held By Production Properties – can this be done?
  • Status of Ohio litigation on no-forced pooling lease provisions. 

3:05-3:30  Appeals Process of Oil and Gas Division Orders - Cory Haydocy

  • When appeals must be filed
  • Nature  of appeals
  • Jurisdiction of the Commission, hearing protocols, quasi-judicial role of Commission
  • Important procedural rules
  • Important controlling judicial decisions and prior precedents
  • Commission decision process
  • Appeal process of Commission decisions

3:30-3:45  Perspectives from the Attorney General’s Office - Daniel Martin

  • When AG’s office becomes engaged, how attorneys are assigned to cases
  • AG’s role in representing Oil and Gas Division
  • Special considerations for AG in representing Oil and Gas Division

3:45-4:00  Panel Questions

4:00 – 5:10      Special Problems Presented by Shale to Oil and Gas Unitization:  How Shale Development has Changed Unitization Practice.  Patrick Martin, Louisiana State University  Law Professor Emeritus, and Author of “The Law of Pooling and Unitization;” Keith Hall, Assistant Professor of Law, LSU, Director of the Louisiana Mineral Law Institute; and members of Ohio Oil and Gas Division and/or Louisiana Dept of Conservation.

  • Traditional reservoir drainage patterns and how this shapes units
    • How are units abandoned or terminated under traditional strategies?
  • How shale reservoir drainage is different, and how this may affect unit strategies
    • How are units abandoned or terminated under shale strategies?
    • How are unit landowners kept whole in the event only some of the unit is drained and it is abandoned?
  • How do oil and gas unitization procedures and rules differ between states?
  • What are typical hearings like?
  • What resources are available in other states to manage unitization?
  • How are traditional oil and gas states (LA, TX, OK) handling changes in unitization resulting from shale development?
  • How has unitization been handled in neighboring states of PA, WV? 

4:50 - 5:10      Panel Questions/Closing Comments


CLE credit: 3.0 hours pending

Category: Alumni, CLE Programs, Faculty, General, Public Lectures

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