Best Lawyers for Oil and Gas Law in America

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Lawyer
Mark K. Adams was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Mark K. Adams

Rodey, Dickason, Sloan, Akin, & Robb P.A.
  • Location:
    Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Mining Law Oil and Gas Law Energy Law Corporate Law Native American Law Environmental Law Water Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Real Estate Law Tax Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Bellevue, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law CleanTech Law Energy Regulatory Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental
Lawyer
David F. Asmus was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

David F. Asmus

Sidley Austin LLP
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law Energy Law International Trade and Finance Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Environmental Law Government Relations Practice Litigation - Environmental Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Environmental Litigation - Construction Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Real Estate Natural Resources Law Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Water Law Energy Law Energy Regulatory Law Litigation - Environmental Environmental Law Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Securities / Capital Markets Law Mergers and Acquisitions Law Corporate Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Midland, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Ridgeland, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Environmental Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jackson, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Antitrust Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Commercial Litigation Mining Law Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Real Estate Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Practice Areas:
    Railroad Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Bridgeport, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Corporate Law Real Estate Law Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation Litigation - Banking and Finance Appellate Practice Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Securities Bet-the-Company Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law Administrative / Regulatory Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Insurance Law Commercial Litigation Litigation - Construction Appellate Practice
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Regulatory Law Mining Law Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Real Estate Law Energy Law Oil and Gas Law Mining Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Administrative / Regulatory Law Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law Energy Law Corporate Law Mergers and Acquisitions Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Litigation - Environmental Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Anchorage, Alaska
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Louisville, Kentucky
  • Practice Areas:
    Environmental Law Litigation - Environmental Oil and Gas Law Mining Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Water Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Commercial Litigation Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Midland, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law Natural Resources Law Litigation - Environmental Environmental Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jackson, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Regulatory Law Natural Resources Law Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jackson, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Mining Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Transportation Law Oil and Gas Law Product Liability Litigation - Defendants Admiralty and Maritime Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Natural Resources Law Litigation - Real Estate Real Estate Law Mining Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Bridgeport, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Banking and Finance Litigation - Land Use and Zoning Natural Resources Law Litigation - Environmental Environmental Law Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Real Estate Energy Law Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Bridgeport, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Real Estate Law Education Law Banking and Finance Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lansing, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Mediation Oil and Gas Law Arbitration
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Mining Law Energy Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Commercial Litigation Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Appellate Practice Commercial Litigation Mediation Administrative / Regulatory Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Environmental Natural Resources Law Commercial Litigation Bet-the-Company Litigation Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Cheyenne, Wyoming
  • Practice Areas:
    Environmental Law Natural Resources Law Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental Environmental Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental Energy Law Commercial Litigation Bet-the-Company Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Sacramento, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Anchorage, Alaska
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Trusts and Estates Corporate Law Tax Law Construction Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Shreveport, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental Natural Resources Law Real Estate Law Mining Law Environmental Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Project Finance Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lansing, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Product Liability Litigation - Defendants Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Portland, Oregon
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Timber Law Mining Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Commercial Litigation Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Troy, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law Environmental Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Beaumont, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Real Estate Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Mining Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Anchorage, Alaska
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Mining Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Mining Law Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Municipal Energy Law Litigation - Land Use and Zoning Environmental Law Natural Resources Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Environmental
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Shreveport, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lansing, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Corporate Law Oil and Gas Law Real Estate Law Health Care Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Environmental Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Cheyenne, Wyoming
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Government Relations Practice Native American Law Environmental Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Real Estate Law Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Shreveport, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Litigation - Labor and Employment Litigation - Real Estate Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants Oil and Gas Law Real Estate Law Litigation - Environmental Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Practice Areas:
    Environmental Law Energy Law Natural Resources Law Native American Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jackson, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Banking and Finance Commercial Litigation Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants Energy Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Energy Law Native American Law Environmental Law Oil and Gas Law Mining Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Shreveport, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Energy Law Litigation - Construction Employment Law - Management Construction Law Commercial Litigation Labor Law - Management Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Environmental Environmental Law Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants Oil and Gas Law Railroad Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Admiralty and Maritime Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Ridgeland, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Water Law Litigation - Environmental Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Practice Areas:
    Railroad Law Commercial Litigation Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Ridgeland, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Environmental Law Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Environmental Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Columbus, Ohio
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Native American Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Natural Resources Law Energy Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Natural Resources Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Canton, Ohio
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Real Estate
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Commercial Litigation Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants
Lawyer
Danny G. Worrell was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Danny G. Worrell

Baker Botts L.L.P.
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Environmental Law Oil and Gas Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Energy Law Oil and Gas Law

  • Location:
  • Practice Areas:

Practice Area Definition

Oil and Gas Law Definition

Oil and gas law is the subset of natural resources law that includes the exploration for, and the production, transportation, and processing of, crude oil, natural gas, and associated hydrocarbons.

Oil and gas law has developed around the three “streams” of business — (i) upstream is the “E&P” business, the actual exploration for, and production of, oil and gas; (ii) midstream is the gathering, processing, storing, transporting, and marketing of produced oil and gas; and (iii) downstream is the refining of crude oil and the selling and ultimate distribution of natural gas and products derived from crude oil. Oil and gas is the body of law that organizes the discovery, development, allocation, ownership, management, and ultimately use of oil and natural gas as energy sources that fuel modern civilization. Oil and gas law means the constellation of statutory, regulatory, and judicial law that customarily applies to the three streams of the oil and gas business.

This body of law draws heavily from contract, property, and corporate law, but also has substantial overlap with environmental, tax, employment, administrative, and even tort law. The set of legal issues that confront, for example, a client wishing to organize a company to acquire and develop a particular offshore or onshore oil and gas prospect, is unique. Therefore, the diversity and specificity of these issues led to the emergence of specialized oil and gas lawyers.

Oil and gas lawyers also must be familiar with the business realities that affect their clients. They are experienced with the operational details and points of negotiation in the contracts and physical operations that are common and also unique to oil and gas. They must alert clients to potential traps for the unwary in the case law of their jurisdiction, navigate government regulations to accomplish their clients’ goals, and assemble transactions from the myriad property and operational issues that exist for each particular oil and gas prospect or producing property. For example, the mechanics and economics of the development of oil and gas versus hard minerals such as coal has led to dramatically different business structures and contracts to develop these fossil fuel resources.

Some oil and gas lawyers specialize in unwinding the often Gordian mineral ownership of oil and gas in place; others are skilled in litigating the unique disputes that arise in the context of development joint ventures; and still others can structure oil and gas projects from exploration to development and sale. Additionally, the oil and gas industry has a significant international dimension; in this context, oil and gas lawyers can provide invaluable orientation and counsel to foreign companies investing in oil and gas exploration projects in the United States or domestic companies seeking to expand their presence globally.
Oil and gas law is the subset of natural resources law that includes the exploration for, and the production, transportation, and processing of, crude oil, natural gas, and associated hydrocarbons.

Oil and gas law has developed around the three “streams” of business — (i) upstream is the “E&P” business, the actual exploration for, and production of, oil and gas; (ii) midstream is the gathering, processing, storing, transporting, and marketing of produced oil and gas; and (iii) downstream is the refining of crude oil and the selling and ultimate distribution of natural gas and products derived from crude oil. Oil and gas is the body of law that organizes the discovery, development, allocation, ownership, management, and ultimately use of oil and natural gas as energy sources that fuel modern civilization. Oil and gas law means the constellation of statutory, regulatory, and judicial law that customarily applies to the three streams of the oil and gas business.

This body of law draws heavily from contract, property, and corporate law, but also has substantial overlap with environmental, tax, employment, administrative, and even tort law. The set of legal issues that confront, for example, a client wishing to organize a company to acquire and develop a particular offshore or onshore oil and gas prospect, is unique. Therefore, the diversity and specificity of these issues led to the emergence of specialized oil and gas lawyers.

Oil and gas lawyers also must be familiar with the business realities that affect their clients. They are experienced with the operational details and points of negotiation in the contracts and physical operations that are common and also unique to oil and gas. They must alert clients to potential traps for the unwary in the case law of their jurisdiction, navigate government regulations to accomplish their clients’ goals, and assemble transactions from the myriad property and operational issues that exist for each particular oil and gas prospect or producing property. For example, the mechanics and economics of the development of oil and gas versus hard minerals such as coal has led to dramatically different business structures and contracts to develop these fossil fuel resources.

Some oil and gas lawyers specialize in unwinding the often Gordian mineral ownership of oil and gas in place; others are skilled in litigating the unique disputes that arise in the context of development joint ventures; and still others can structure oil and gas projects from exploration to development and sale. Additionally, the oil and gas industry has a significant international dimension; in this context, oil and gas lawyers can provide invaluable orientation and counsel to foreign companies investing in oil and gas exploration projects in the United States or domestic companies seeking to expand their presence globally.