Robert S. Thompson  III - Greenberg Traurig LLP

Robert S. Thompson III

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2010

Robert S. Thompson III has broad experience in Indian law and energy and natural resources matters, with a focus on the oil and gas industry. He represents tribal and non-tribal clients in resource development, production, rights-of-way, easements, leases, joint ventures and partnerships.

Rob is experienced in the development of American Indian and public lands natural resources and the statutory and regulatory requirements applicable to such development. He has made presentations on issues pertaining to development of Indian minerals and enforcement of mineral agreements covering Indian lands to the National Academy of Sciences, the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, and the Federal Indian Bar Association.

Upon graduation from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1979, Rob was selected for the Solicitor's Honors Program and moved to Washington, D.C., to serve in the Solicitor's Office of the Department of Interior. Following his departure from government service in 1981, he entered private practice and focused on Indian law, federal litigation and natural resource development. Rob is an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma.

University of GeorgiaBS 1973University of Wisconsin–MadisonJ.D. 1979
Wisconsin Bar AssociationRocky Mountain Mineral Law FoundationFederal Bar Association Colorado Bar Association American Bar AssociationAmerican Association of Professional LandmenCherokee Nation of Oklahoma

Case History

Areas of Concentration
  • American Indian law 
  • Energy and natural resources 
  • Regulatory compliance 
  • Litigation
Other Court Admissions
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
Significant Representations
  • Advised on the passage of legislation addressing the dual severance tax imposed on Indian lands. 
  • Participated in recent revisions to Onshore Order No. 1 and successful insertion therein of procedures to ensure federal and Indian oil and gas lessees access to split estate and surface lands. 
  • Negotiated, drafted and completed on the part of the oil and gas industry of traditional and non-traditional development agreements on Indian lands, including tribal and allotted lands of the Blackfeet Tribe, Northern Ute Tribe, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, Shoshone and Arapaho Tribes, and Three Affiliated Tribes. 
  • Represented of gas pipeline companies and the natural gas industry in the Congressionally mandated Section 1813 Study dealing with rights-of-way on Indian lands. 
  • Participated as a committee member on the group drafting the existing valuation regulations for natural gas production from Indian lands. 
  • Established reserved water rights as counsel for the Northern Arapaho Tribe in adjudication of the Wind River in Wyoming. 
  • Negotiated and drafted joint venture agreements and partnerships dealing with natural gas transportation systems between oil and gas companies and between oil and gas companies and Indian tribes. 
  • Identification of acceptable and proper manufacturing allowances for natural gas in Shoshone and Arapaho Tribes v. Hodel, 903 F.2d 784 (10th Cir. 1990).

Client Comments

"Rob Thompson and his team are outstanding. His practice is well rounded, and he is intimately familiar with the substantive law as well as the players, particularly in western states."

"I would strongly recommend Mr. Thompson for any matters dealing with Native American law. I have found Mr. Thompson to be very knowledgeable, cordial, and well-informed in working with him on Tribal issues."

-John Benton
Vice President and General Manager
Black Hills E&P

"Robert Thompson is QEPFS's "go-to" outside counsel concerning Native American issues."

-Cristopher J. Castillo
QEP Field Services Company

Office Location

The Tabor Center, Suite 2400
1200 17th Street
Denver, CO 80202
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2016 Lawyer of the Year in Native American Law of the Denver Metro Area
Robert S. Thompson III has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2016!

Practice Areas

Native American Law

Other Information

Race: American Indian
Gender: Male