Law360 reported that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has decided to review a case that will provide the court with an opportunity to reevaluate a century-old legal principle that determines the assignment of gas leasing rights. The case under review is whether a landowner’s original lease agreement with a petroleum company’s unit remained binding despite the later discovery of deed restrictions, reported the article.

The article, titled “Andadarko Case Gives Pa. Justices Chance to Update Gas Law,” stated that “there was little reason to fear that the appeal would upend the bedrock principle, known as estoppel by deed, which mandates that lessees get the benefit of land which lessors did not originally possess at the time the lease was drafted but subsequently gained the rights to.”

Gregory J. Krock, chair of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney’s Oil & Gas Litigation Section, tells the publication that “there is some fairly old and well-established case law about estoppel by deed and after-acquired property, and this case seems to fit fairly snugly for the most part within that case law.”

"You've got to keep in mind that a lot of these deeds go back a long time," he says. "A lot of them are handwritten and they're very hard to read." 

Read the full article – “Andadarko Case Gives Pa. Justices Chance to Update Gas Law” (Law360, September 23, 2014) Subscription required.