Southeastern Ohio Landowners Association
Protecting Landowners Interests

View Sample Landowner Agreement

The Southeastern Ohio Landowners Association, Inc. is a non-profit corporation with a seven member board. The board members do not receive any compensation. The Association will not receive any fee or compensation. The Association has retained the services of Jennifer Garrison, Esq., and Bricker & Eckler LLP to serve as legal counsel. The Association has also engaged Dr. Bob Chase, head of the petroleum engineering department at Marietta College, to serve as a technical advisor. Legal and technical advisors are not paid unless and until landowners receive their up front lease bonus from an oil and gas company.

After a critical mass of land is assembled by the Association, the legal counsel will present the Association with a model lease that will be “bid” to multiple oil and gas companies. By engaging in a formal “request for proposals” bid process, the Association expects to achieve the best possible economic proposals from many different companies through competition in the marketplace.

Dr. Chase will utilize his extensive knowledge of oil and gas companies to identify and communicate with many different companies to achieve the best results possible. It is important to note that the Association and the Association’s attorneys will deal directly with oil and gas companies, not brokers or landsmen. This approach will minimize any unnecessary costs to the landowners, and eliminate the middleman.

Once a successful bidder is selected by the Association board of directors, the attorneys will begin negotiating with the company to secure the most landowner-friendly lease terms possible. This process could take many days of difficult negotiations, but the Association’s attorneys have extensive experience negotiating with large energy companies and will use that knowledge to put the landowners in the best position possible.

Once lease terms are finalized, a final lease will be presented to members of association for their signature. If a landowner agrees to the terms, and once the lease is signed[1], the oil and gas company will spend time ensuring that the landowner has good title to lease their Marcellus and Utica gas and oil rights (usually 60-120 days). After that time and after the companies make sure the rights are available to be leased, the landowner will be paid their up front bonus. The Association’s attorneys and engineer only will be paid their fees after landowners receive their up front bonuses.

[1] A landowner is not required to sign the lease. If the landowner decides not to sign, he or she may negotiate his or her own lease, but will be obligated to pay the attorneys’ and engineering fees if he or she decides to sign a lease with the same company as the Association. This protection is built into the landowner agreement to make sure oil and gas companies do not try to divide the association, and to protect the majority of landowners in the association.