In Anadarko Petroleum Corp. v. Commw. of Pa, the Commonwealth brought an action against mineral lessees for alleged violations of the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law (“UTPCPL”) based on lessees’ conduct in securing subsurface mineral leases.
In addressing this issue of first impression, the Commonwealth Court affirmed the trial court’s ruling and held that the Commonwealth stated legally viable claims against the lessees under the UTPCPL and opened the door to future UTPCPL actions against lessees.
On further appeal, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania reversed the Commonwealth Court and held that the Commonwealth may not bring claims under the UTPCPL on behalf of private landowners against the E&P company for alleged deceptive practices in securing gas leases. See, Anadarko, 247 A.3d 934 (Pa. 2021). The Court also considered whether the Commonwealth may pursue antitrust remedies against a natural gas extractor under the UTPCPL and found the Commonwealth failed to state a claim under that theory as well.
Please contact your Metz Lewis relationship attorney or a member of our Oil and Gas team if you have any questions or wish to discuss.