Oil & Gas Survey: West Virginia (2019)

11 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2019 Last revised: 2 Sep 2021

See all articles by Joshua P. Fershee

Joshua P. Fershee

University of North Dakota - School of Law; West Virginia University - College of Law; Dean & Professor of Law

Date Written: April 1, 2019


This Article summarizes and discusses important recent developments in West Virginia’s oil and gas law, including legislative action and case law. This Article is divided into three Sections. First, West Virginia’s evolution in its approach to fractional mineral owner disputes in the Marcellus Shale. After multiple efforts to pass a forced pooling bill, the state settled instead on a cotenancy solution. Second, West Virginia addressed flat-rate royalties, following two court cases, a legislative response, and a subsequent court challenge to the legislation. Finally, this Article discusses three developments in lease interpretation: (1) what will be deemed “reasonably necessary” for oil and gas development in West Virginia; (2) if implied pooling rights are included in West Virginia leases that are silent on the matter; and (3) whether non-executory and non-participating royalty owners have rights to approve pooling.

Keywords: oil, gas, natural gas, shale, Marcellus, hydraulic fracturing, fracking, mineral rights, royalty, property, pooling

JEL Classification: Q4, Q40, Q41, Q48, Q13, Q21, Q28, Q3, Q31, Q31, Q33, Q38

Suggested Citation

Fershee, Joshua Paul and Fershee, Joshua Paul and Fershee, Joshua Paul, Oil & Gas Survey: West Virginia (2019) (April 1, 2019). Texas A&M University Journal of Property Law, Vol. 5, 2019, WVU College of Law Research Paper No. 2019-010, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3364269

Joshua Paul Fershee (Contact Author)

University of North Dakota - School of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 9003
Grand Forks, ND 58202-9003
United States
701-777-2261 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://law.und.edu/faculty/profile/fershee-j.cfm

Dean & Professor of Law ( email )

2500 California Plaza
Omaha, NE 68178
United States
402-280-2348 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.creighton.edu/faculty-directory-profile/2522/joshua-fershee

West Virginia University - College of Law ( email )

101 Law School Drive
Morgantown, WV West Virginia 26506
United States
304-293-2868 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://law.wvu.edu/faculty/full_time_faculty/joshua-p-fershee

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