OH Supreme Court Upholds Victory for Beck Energy in Lease Case

A major victory for oil and gas drillers in Ohio was just handed down by the Ohio Supreme Court. You may recall MDN brought you the news in October 2014 that the Seventh District Court of Appeals in Ohio overturned a lower court ruling in the case of Hupp v. Beck Energy Corp (see Major OH Court Victory for Beck Energy & XTO in Lease Case). Brief background: three landowners filed suit claiming that their leases with Beck Energy Corp. were void and should be terminated because Beck never drilled wells on their property and that a provision allowing Beck to pay a nominal delay fee was against public policy. The lower court agreed and granted summary judgment. The court then granted class certification to the lawsuit brought by the three landowners–meaning between 600-700 landowners would also be able to invalidate their leases. On appeal to the Seventh District Court, the case was overturned and decided in favor of Beck Energy (and XTO Energy who had purchased the leases from Beck). It was appealed again, to the OH Supreme Court, and the high court has sided with Beck/XTO…

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