Natural Resource Law

Natural Resource Law

Natural Resource Law

One area where Colligan has some unique experience is Natural Resource Law.  Our work in this area includes representing clients with interests in:
    • Renewable Energy
    • Timber, Forestry and Land Use 
    • Oil and Gas 
    • Agriculture and ag-tech
In general, natural resources belong to the state or federal government unless they’re located on private property or the rights to the resources have been obtained from the government. States retain primary authority over natural resources within their borders, although federal statutes also apply to many resources, especially those found on federal land.  

Renewable Energy

The development of the renewable energy sector – solar, wind and biomass – continues to expand. The decision whether to lease your land to a renewable energy company for energy production can be difficult. Beyond the rent income it can generate, there are other considerations such as tax implications, lease terms, environmental impact and the placement of the leasee’s equipment on your property.  If you’re considering starting a business in this area, there are renewable energy laws to keep in mind.  In both circumstances, the language used in the renewable energy legal documents can often be technical and detailed.  Our lawyers have extensive experience in this area and can help you navigate the industry, consider the business terms and negotiate productive agreements.  

Timber & Forestry Law

The legal considerations pertaining to timber can include:
    • Warranties and Titles
    • Taxes
    • Succession Planning
    • Boundary and Easement
    • Conservation Easements
    • Adirondack Park Agency matters 
    • Land use
Timber and forestry also offer the opportunity for compatible income streams fed through hunting leases, wind leases, oil and gas leases and carbon credits. Because timber is such a unique natural resource asset, the attorneys who manage the related issues need to be specialized in the field. The lawyers at Colligan Law have a great deal of expertise with all issues in this legal specialty area. Our law firm can advise forest owners, forest products companies and foresters on all matters related to Timber and Forestry Law.

Oil & Gas

Oil and Gas law has evolved into a complex area of legal practice and it’s important for a landowner’s rights to be protected throughout the installation and drilling of wells or pipelines on their property.  In order to harvest the valuable oil and gas resources under the surface, a landowner typically enters into a lease agreement with an oil and gas company. Under such an agreement, the landowner gives the oil and gas company the right to explore for and extract the mineral in exchange for monetary compensation.  Consideration needs to be given to legal issues such as land-use management, extraction and production operations, transport and delivery arrangements, severed property rights, royalties and other benefits. Often, the gas companies have the advantage of size and sophistication, experience with lease terms and in-depth knowledge of the property and its underlying hydrocarbon reserves. This knowledge tends to give the oil and gas company an advantage during the negotiation of the lease agreement. The lawyers at Colligan Law can help level the negotiating table. Colligan Law has successfully represented many landowners during lease agreement negotiations with oil and gas companies. We understand all facets of oil and gas leasing including royalty payments, free gas, up-front bonuses, proper valuation of the leased interest, and surface rights.  Our guidance extends beyond the negotiation process to ensure that the landowner’s rights are protected during the installation and drilling phases.  

Agriculture & Ag-Technologies

Upstate New York’s farming and agriculture industries preserve and manage some of our most valuable natural resources. The industry is a crucial part of our region’s economy, and Colligan Law works with landowners, producers and developers of innovative agricultural technology to achieve their goals and grow their businesses. This diverse area of law covers crop and livestock production, food safety concerns, resource management challenges, land use, and sustainability and environmental protection. The Colligan Law attorneys who practice in Ag Law must necessarily know and incorporate traditional areas of law practice such as property, water, and oil and gas, and must also be knowledgeable in administrative law, intellectual property, food law, clean energy law, and environmental law.