I would recommend Owen Beetham. He beat Chesapeake on surface rights in the Sportsmen Club case and was on the right side of the Ohio Dormant Mineral Act. I would rather have a small town lawyer who knows the law than a big town lawyer who loses to the small town guy AND charges twice as much as him.
Can you get me his info
Agree. Owen is the bright star in this area. A hometown kid who's doing an amazing job on these kinds of cases.
Not sure why you feel you need an attorney. It does not sound like Atlas has done anything wrong. A Oil & Gas company does not have to put your property into a unit unless they drill under your property.
How were you able to determine the drilling location if they are doing it under ground? Does it show on a Plat map or are you or know a drilling engineer? I believe that is stealing and would mean jail time; therefore, it's most likely a mistake if true. You don't need an attorney to fix a mistake with a natural gas drilling company.
The pad is 400 feet from my property. The people in back of me the side of me and complete front are collecting royalties
The pad is not on your property and the gas is being taken thousands of feet underground. If they stole your gas that would mean everyone working on the drilling site would know. They would have a legal responsibility to report this to the authorities. Before you waste money on an attorney, you need to gather your facts.
Keep in mind they don't need to steal your gas since they can get it all back in deductions on the monthly royalty checks.
I am familiar with the area you are in. The Atlas wells are shallow Clinton wells and are vertical. Ohio law states that if you are more than 500 feet from a vertical well, you do not have to be included in the unit. If you are less than 500 feet, some of your property should be receiving a royalty. They measure from the property line to the actual wellhead.
I know of several old (30+ years) Clinton wells that have hundreds of acres unitized to the unit but have excluded neighbors because they were not under lease at the time the well was drilled OR they had a "no unitization" clause in their lease. This was and is a GOOD thing for those property owners because their land was not tied up (Held by Production HBP) and they were able to lease again. Each time they leased, they received a new bonus. If they were HBP, they might have received a small check each year ($1 per acre sometimes), but missed out on the bonus which might have been $2500 to $5000 per acre.
What I am trying to say: you are lucky that your land is not tied up by this old Atlas well which would pay pennies compared to the leases for horizontal wells.