Energy: Oil & Gas
Print PDF

Recognized by U.S. News and World Report as a top practice in Oil & Gas Law.

The experienced attorneys of Jones Walker advise oil and gas companies, pipeline companies, and related businesses in the full range of matters involving upstream, midstream, and downstream energy concerns. We regularly handle complex energy transactions, help ensure regulatory compliance and resolution of conflicts with federal and state agencies, provide government relations services, and represent clients in all forms of industry-related disputes and litigation. We have particular experience in matters involving emerging technologies such as hydraulic fracturing (fracking), deepwater exploration and production, and shale plays, including the Haynesville Shale and Eagle Ford plays.

We provide cradle-through-operations counsel to operators, non-operators, pipelines, power plant operators, service companies, seismic companies and other businesses in connection with the primary activities of oil, gas, and other natural resource production, including exploration, development, operation, and distribution. Our real estate lawyers have years of experience issuing title opinions involving producing property interests and advise clients in connection with the location and relocation of facilities, acquisition and release of surface and mineral rights, and other real estate development matters.

From a transactional perspective, we counsel oil and gas companies and investors on all aspects of mergers, acquisitions, and sales of assets and equity, as well as the formation of partnerships, limited partnerships, joint ventures, limited liability companies (LLCs) and other entities. Our corporate attorneys routinely negotiate exploration, drilling, production, sales, transportation, processing, and other agreements, and provide guidance on leasing, assignments, pooling, and unitizations. We also represent lenders and borrowers in the full range of project financing and other debt transactions.

When disputes arise, whether with regulators, vendors, customers, investors and others, we provide effective counsel and representation in courtrooms, in arbitration, and before regulatory agencies across the country. We have developed and maintained longstanding relationships with federal and state regulatory agencies and officials. As a result, our clients often benefit from our ability to present their concerns as legitimate and of value to the industry and the economy. Our team includes lawyers who previously served in senior roles in government agencies and the U.S. Congress, including a former commissioner of the Louisiana Office of Conservation, former general counsel for the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, former assistant secretary of the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, former secretary of the Louisiana Mineral and Energy Board, former assistant secretary for the Louisiana Department of Revenue, former United States Coast Guard Liaison to the U.S. Senate, former attorney for the Environmental Protection agency, and former attorney for the United States Corps of Engineers. 

Oil & Gas: Upstream

Jones Walker has years of experience representing participants in the upstream sector of the oil and gas industry, from landowners to major international petroleum companies. Our coordinated energy team draws from each of the firm's core practice areas to advise clients on issues that arise throughout upstream energy development, extraction and distribution activities.

Our counseling and litigation services include title examinations and mineral lease acquisitions; assignments, subleases, and operating agreements; water acquisition and related agreements; lease maintenance disputes; unitization-related disputes; royalty payment and affiliate transaction disputes; toxic tort and environmental actions arising out of operations and involving alleged personal and property damage; and enforcement actions arising out of operations. We have developed specific experience and best practices in the representation of oil and gas clients with respect to new shale plays, such as the Haynesville and Eagle Ford plays.

Oil & Gas: Midstream

The midstream sector of the energy industry is high-paced, dynamic, and complex. It presents a challenging legal environment that requires lawyers with equal measures of experience, initiative, and creativity. The energy attorneys of Jones Walker draw on their long history in this industry and close ties with members of our environmental, litigation, business, and regulatory practices to provide sophisticated counsel in a broad range of matters relating to the development, transportation, storage, and marketing of oil and gas. This team-oriented approach enables us to provide complete, integrated guidance in all facets of midstream energy law and dispute resolution.

Jones Walker attorneys regularly represent clients in midstream transactions and litigation matters valued in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Our list of client engagements includes acquisitions and divestitures of gathering systems, processing facilities, and interstate and intrastate pipelines; financing, construction, development, and permitting of interstate and intrastate pipelines and natural gas storage facilities; tax matters involving publicly traded master limited partnerships; pipeline condemnations, legacy litigation, and environmental damage litigation; and title reviews, mineral title opinions, and reviews of title policies.

Our lawyers have represented clients in high-profile transactions and litigation that have set new standards for the midstream energy industry. For example, we have been actively involved in the Haynesville Shale play for many of our processing, transportation, and storage facility clients, and acted as lead counsel in successfully challenging the Department of Interior's imposition of the moratorium on the deep-water drilling following the Deepwater Horizon blowout and subsequent oil spill.

Oil & Gas: Downstream

Jones Walker lawyers represent clients with extensive downstream oil and gas operations, including refining, distribution, and marketing. We have advised natural gas transportation and storage companies, gas processors, pipeline owners, utilities, manufacturers of parts, materials and equipment, and franchisees in a broad range of environmental, real estate, regulatory, tax, and transactional matters, as well as in litigation and resolution of disputes with private parties and government regulators.

Our transactional team regularly advises companies on the drafting and negotiation of key contracts, including agreements involving operations and maintenance, processing, tolling, joint facilities use, co-generation projects, employment, franchises, services, sales, title insurance, and other commercial contracts. We counsel midstream clients on mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, and joint ventures, and conduct related due diligence, and advise on the creation of limited partnerships and master limited partnerships.

Our energy litigators have represented downstream oil and gas companies in disputes across the Southeast and the United States. Recent successful engagements include representing major pipeline clients in numerous pipeline condemnation actions in support of the companies' construction interstate pipelines, and prosecution of a case in which our client sought more than $75 million in damages based on defective steel pipes used in the construction of oil pipelines.






  • "The Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority–East Lawsuit Dismissed"
    Lafayette Association of Professional Landmen Newsletter, March 2015
  • North American Oil & Gas Pipelines, January 21, 2015
  • Oil & Gas Financial Journal, Vol. 12, Issue 1, January 13, 2015
  • “What Happened to Fair Notice? Federal Oil and Gas Lessees, Due Process, and Retroactive Changes to the Rules of the Game”
    65th Annual Oil and Gas Law Conference of the Institute for Energy Law, February 2014