PA Landowners Win $1.1M Lawsuit Against ECA re Royalty Deductions

lawsuitOn Monday, October 24, 2016, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals (in Western Pennsylvania) ruled that Marcellus driller ECA (Energy Corporation of America) did not prove a need for a new trial in the case it previously lost. Pennsylvania landowners sued ECA in federal court beginning in 2010, saying their royalty checks were shorted because ECA was improperly deducting post-production costs. Sound familiar? In February 2013 a federal judge upheld a split decision that said most of what ECA was deducting was OK, but the one thing they can’t deduct from royalty checks are charges for interstate pipeline transmission (for the full story, read our post Federal Judge Upholds Split Decision in PA Royalty Case). More legal wrangling ensued after that decision and a jury trial convened in March 2015. The trial was to determine whether or not the landowners were shorted royalty payments because ECA was deducting charges for transportation and marketing. The jury found for the landowners and against ECA, awarding the landowners a $1.1 million judgment. ECA asked for a new trial and they have now been denied…

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