Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Shychuck v. Chesapeake Appalachia, LLC., No. 13-375, 2013 WL 2558161 (W.D.Pa. June 11, 2013).

On June 11, 2013, the District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania remanded an action to quiet title to the Court of Common Pleas for Beaver County. The dispute between the Plaintiff, William Shychuck, and the Defendant Chesapeake Appalachia, arose out an action to quiet title to the mineral and oil and gas rights on property owned by the Plaintiff. The complaint asserted that Defendants attained interest in the oil and gas rights through invalid assignments of an oil and gas lease.

The District Court remanded the case, despite the Defendant’s arguments to the contrary, holding that the Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. §2201 provided the court with discretionary jurisdiction over the case. The court explained that the issues involved in the case hinged solely on Pennsylvania law because the arguments drawn by both parties relied on state court opinions from the 19th century. Further, the court said because the issues were to be resolved by Pennsylvania state laws, it would decline resolving the questions in federal court.

Written by: Garrett Lent, Research Center
Agricultural Law Resource and Reference Center
June 2013

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