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Property rights

Blankenship v. Consolidated Coal Co.

The Fourth Circuit upheld a lower court ruling that a coal company isn't liable for claims by property owners over water disposed of in a mine beneath their property because Virginia's statute of limitations prohibited the suit. The...

Schoene v. McElroy Coal Co.

A district court denied mining companies' motion for summary judgment seeking to dismiss property owners' lawsuit against them for alleged subsidence damage. The coal companies, who lease the coal interests under the owners' property,...

Snyder v. Ohio Department of Natural Resources

The Ohio Supreme Court held that a mineral rights owner may be able to strip mine portions of a state wildlife area. The state and the mineral rights owner entered a contract granting the owner “all mineral rights, including rights of...

Enteck GRB LLC v. Stull Ranches, LLC

The Tenth Circuit held that an energy company may cross private property in order to develop new oil well sites under the property owner's surface estate as well as to access one of its existing wells located on adjacent BLM property....

Lubbock, Texas v. Coyote Lake Ranch, LLC

A Texas appellate court reversed a lower court decision enjoining a city from undertaking certain activities relating to further development of its proposed water well plan on a landowner's property. The city owns the groundwater rights...

Broussard v. Dow Chemical Co.

The Fifth Circuit upheld the dismissal of a landowner's suit against a chemical company for damages stemming from natural gas well operations. The company operated the well in the late 1960s and early 1970s under a mineral lease that...

Reep v. State

The North Dakota Supreme Court held that the state owns the mineral interests under the shore zone of the Missouri River, which cuts through the oil-rich Bakken Shale region. Under the equal footing doctrine, the state's title to the...

Wyatt v. United States

The court reverses a lower court decision finding the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM) liable for the permanent taking of a mining company's leasehold property. The mining company applied to the OSM for a...

Save Our Little Vermillion Env't v. Illinois Cement Co.

The court holds that although an environmental group possesses certain subsurface ownership rights to a property, a cement company that possesses the property's surface rights owns limestone on and under the surface of the property....

United States v. Shumway

The court reverses a district court summary judgment decision that ordered the owners of unpatented mill site claims in the Tonto National Forest in Arizona to remove themselves and all their things from the sites and to restore the...