As a leading firm for claims regarding land damage attributable to historical operations of oil and gas companies, we have consistently proven ourselves as we have championed our clients’ positions. Our substantial trial experience is complemented by our appellate achievements, where we have established legal defenses and the procedural framework applicable in legacy cases.
Regulators trust us. In the 1930s, we pioneered the administrative hearings in oil and gas matters in front of the Office of Conservation, and we have continued to work closely with regulators. We know what the agency practices were back then, how their process has evolved throughout the decades, and what they require at present.
Since the proliferation of legacy lawsuits following the Louisiana Supreme Court’s seminal decision in Corbello, we have led the way in matters interpreting and applying Act 312, which governs the procedures and remedies in legacy cases. Our experience ranges from litigating matters through trial, to handling hearings on behalf of energy companies in front of the Louisiana Office of Conservation and the Department of Natural Resources. We have extensive experience working with environmental consultants and the agencies to determine whether remedial action is required and if so, what remediation is necessary. These trials and administrative proceedings involve extensive expert testimony where we have valuable scientific knowledge when it comes to ecological risk assessments, fate and transport, geology, geomorphology, groundwater modeling and more.
Looking to the future through a historical lens of the past
When our clients face claims that can cost hundreds of millions of dollars, we immediately analyze their historical operations under the framework of the rules and regulations in place at the time of those operations. Evaluating a company’s historical footprint and operations allows us to analyze your potential share of liability and identify available defenses. We also handle indemnity and contribution claims among operators who worked on the same lease or consecutively. Our position of strength is always to be trial ready, but our goal is to fully support your business objectives, and what it takes to meet them.
Institutional – and intimate – knowledge of the law
We know the procedural complexities of Act 312. And our extensive experience litigating oil and gas disputes places us in the best position to navigate the complicated combination of oil and gas law, tort law, and administrative law found in every legacy case. Liskow has helped to develop the law in this area. In fact, a client retained us as appellate counsel in the first-ever legacy case involving claims for historical oilfield contamination to go through Louisiana’s Act 312 procedure.
Our clients rely on us to assess the risks and present them with their options. Only a handful of legacy lawsuits have gone to trial, and Liskow has successfully served as defense counsel in several legacy cases and has tried three of them to a zero-verdict result. In the appellate arena, we succeeded in limiting legacy claims by establishing legal defenses such as the subsequent purchaser doctrine and getting stale claims dismissed as time-barred.
Our active involvement in the statutory interpretation of unresolved issues of Act 312 that are being fought in the court system means we are keenly aware of what’s at stake for our clients. And because we regularly handle Act 312 administrative hearings, we are at the forefront of developments in this area.