On July 29, 2011, United States Magistrate Judge Pamela Meade Sargent ruled that EQT, a Pennsylvania-based energy company, gave false information to coalbed methane landowners in Virginia. According to the opinion, EQT misrepresented to landowners, whose interests are subject to competing claims, that the only way to obtain escrowed or future royalties is by entering into split agreements. These agreements would require coal and gas owners to split these royalties. The opinion states that EQT must inform these types of landowners that they can voluntarily enter into a split agreement or can have a court determine the ownership of the royalties. EQT plans to appeal the decision.
Click here to read the entire opinion
Written by Andy Schwabenbauer, Research Fellow
July 29, 2011