Energy

Experience

  • Energy Fund Formation

    Represented a private investor in the formation and offering of securities in a $20 MM drilling fund formed to acquire prospects and drill for oil in the Barnett Shale. The engagement involved the

  • Energy Litigation

    A suit by a power plant claiming more than $7 MM in damages alleging that gas delivered to the plant did not meet gas quality specifications. We prevailed summary judgment and obtained a take nothing

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Overview

Our energy clients rely on us to provide a considerable depth and breadth of services. From the most routine to the most complex transactions, projects, controversies and regulatory issues, our clients trust us to provide timely and practical legal representation that adds value. Our attorneys understand the energy business, not just energy law. We approach each matter in the context of its materiality to our client, we deploy the appropriate legal resources to protect our clients' interests and achieve its business objectives practically and efficiently and we never lose sight of the bottom line. 

We represent clients in diverse segments of the energy industry, including:

Exploration & Production

Munsch Hardt attorneys have significant experience in all aspects of hydrocarbon exploration and production. Our transactional attorneys have negotiated and drafted geoscientific data licenses, mineral leases, surface use agreements, farm-in and farm-out agreements, joint operating agreements, joint exploration and development agreements, onshore and offshore drilling contracts, master service agreements and contracts for the engineering, procurement and/or construction of production facilities, pipelines and processing plants. We have helped clients acquire or divest mineral interests, leases, wells and gathering systems through purchase-and-sale transactions and mergers. We also have helped clients raise the funds they need to develop their assets or maintain their operations during lean times through asset sales, debt restructuring, finance transactions and equity offerings. We provide counsel on compliance with federal and state regulations pertaining to fair competition, public integrity, immigration, employment, well spacing and permitting, environmental quality, land use and workplace safety.

 

Our Energy Litigation attorneys have helped clients resolve class action royalty lawsuits, lease termination disputes, title disputes, subsurface trespass claims, surface owner conflicts, acreage dedication disputes, joint accounting conflicts, condemnation proceedings, engineering and construction claims arising from defects and from cost overruns, natural gas measurement and allocation controversies, disputes arising from deliveries of contaminated or off-spec product, conflicts pertaining to joint operations, insurance coverage and indemnity claims and serious personal injury claims arising from toxic exposures, blowouts and accidents occurring at well sites, processing plants and refineries. We thoroughly believe that the courthouse doors should never be closed to our clients because of excessive litigation costs; therefore, we work to find flexible fee arrangements that assure our interests remain aligned and the cost of litigation does not outweigh the value of the dispute. Using available procedural rules and discovery techniques, we effectively posture cases for early settlement on the most favorable terms when a reasonable settlement is possible and consistent with the client’s business objectives; however, we are seasoned courtroom veterans who know how to get results in arbitrations, bench trials, jury trials and appeals when settlement is not the client’s objective or when reasonable terms cannot be reached.

Gathering & Processing

Munsch Hardt attorneys have considerable experience in advising our clients with respect to the gathering, compressing, dehydrating, treating, conditioning, processing and marketing of natural gas and crude oil. With the wide variance in composition of natural gas, depending on the field, the formation and the reservoir from which it is produced, a myriad of different issues can arise in this sector of the energy industry.
Our attorneys advise clients in both transactional matters related to the gathering and processing of natural gas and crude oil, including the acquisition and sale of gas gathering systems; gas fractionation; processing and treatment plants and storage facilities; take or pay contracts; processing master service agreements and similar contractual matters; as well as contracts for the engineering, procurement and/or construction of gathering and processing facilities.

 

Our Energy Litigation attorneys have helped clients resolve disputes with Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractors related to the construction and placement into service of all types of gas gathering and processing facilities, between power plant operators and processing companies related to gas quality and content, related to the measurement and analysis of natural gas and crude oil and the resulting under/over payment of proceeds and pipeline damage issues. We also have assisted our clients with respect to construction defects, antitrust and unfair competition issues, insurance disputes, employment litigation, OSHA investigations, regulatory enforcement actions and debt collection and insolvency matters and proceedings.

Oilfield Services

Munsch Hardt is a leader in representing participants in the oilfield services industry. Whether the goal is expansion through an acquisition, promotion of a new technology, managing a specialized workforce or navigating the complexities that arise from regulatory investigations and lawsuits, we help our oilfield services clients and their investors achieve their business objectives effectively and efficiently. We deliver a broad variety of transactional, regulatory and dispute resolution services to companies providing the capital, infrastructure, equipment, intellectual property, skilled personnel and services needed by the oil and gas exploration and production industry. Our clients range from small start-up enterprises to large regional providers serving local or regional markets. The Firm also represents financial institutions, a variety of private funds and other capital providers investing in oilfield services companies.

Refining & Marketing

Munsch Hardt attorneys works closely with oil and gas refiners, petrochemical companies, investors and lenders to downstream participants around the world. From environmental and regulatory concerns to a full spectrum of transactional and corporate advice, our attorneys have a detailed understanding of the market conditions that affect the refining and sale of refined oil and gas products.

 

Our attorneys have significant experience in mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures, financings and investments in the refining and petrochemicals sector. We also advise downstream clients with respect to controversies arising from their operations and interactions with counterparties to their operations.

Renewable & Alternative Energy

Munsch Hardt’s Energy practice group leverages its considerable experience in renewable energy – geothermal, nuclear, solar and wind – to provide clients with valuable market knowledge and experience. The Firm represents clients engaged in innovative and challenging alternative energy matters involving solar, wind, energy storage, fuel cells, geothermal, smart grid applications, biofuels, biomass, waste-to-energy and other state-of-the-art technologies. We offer a full spectrum of legal advice and services to our renewable energy clients, including:

 

  • Acquisitions and financings
  • Project development
  • Project financing
  • Regulatory issues advice and counseling
  • Tax equity transactions
  • Technology licensing
  • Environmental permits, wildlife impact and land use advice
  • Purchase and sale of environmental attributes, including renewable energy credits

Transportation, Storage & Terminalling

Munsch Hardt attorneys have considerable experience in construction and related contracts, environmental regulation, joint venture development, master limited partnerships (MLP), mergers and acquisitions, public and private placements of debt and equity securities, private equity investments, operating and maintenance agreements, project development, project finance, and taxation matters related to the transportation, storage and terminalling of oil and gas hydrocarbons and by-products, including chemicals and natural gas liquids (NGL).

 

Our controversy attorneys have been involved in disputes related to gas gathering systems (including compressors); gas fractionation, processing and treatment plants; NGL, condensate and crude oil gathering and transportation (rail, truck and pipeline) facilities; condensate splitters, NGL, condensate and crude oil terminals and docks; storage facilities; and liquefied natural gas (LNG) export and import terminals.
We also have assisted our clients in employment matters (including immigration issues), OSHA investigations, maritime personal injury matters, environmental litigation and insurance litigation. Clients range from private companies owning pipeline gathering systems, storage facilities and/or truck and rail transportation assets, to large public companies and MLP providing the full spectrum of transportation, storage and terminalling facilities and services.

 

Our clients include private individuals, private equity funds, joint ventures, master limited partnerships, closely-held entities and publicly-traded entities based in the U.S. and abroad. For smaller clients, we often substitute for an in-house legal department, providing legal representation in every aspect of the clients’ operations. For larger clients that typically handle operational matters in-house, including several Fortune 500 companies, we handle more complex mergers and acquisitions, financing and debt restructuring transactions, immigration and employment issues, regulatory compliance and enforcement matters, arbitration and litigation.  

Clients quickly discover we speak their language and team well with their internal staff. Our attorneys have dedicated their careers to serving the energy industry, with several of our senior shareholders having served in-house for many years with major energy companies. We understand geoscientists, engineers, land men, IT professionals, risk managers, EHS professionals, accountants, traders and asset managers, because we’ve worked with them on a daily basis, side-by-side. Our clients benefit from lean, tailored teams led by senior attorneys with deep experience managing every phase of a particular matter, which ensures that initial scoping, strategy development and implementation is seamless and cost-effective. Our controversy attorneys use their substantial experience to thoroughly assess the case on the front end, establish realistic plans and budgets and execute those plans efficiently and effectively.

In order to provide this broad range of experience, the Energy industry team draws upon the experience of the Firm's attorneys, across all of our offices, in the following practice groups:

  • Admiralty & Maritime
  •  Bankruptcy, Restructuring & Insolvency
  • Finance
  •  Construction
  • Corporate & Securities 
  • Environmental
  • Immigration 
  • Information Technology
  • Labor & Employment
  • Litigation
  • Real Estate
  • Tax