Flow line installed out of easement

Just had a question for the experts,

I have a surface and subsurface waver on our lease for no trucks,foot traffic, pipelines, flow lines no activity at all on our property except for a 10 foot easement on our back fence line. yesterday

while out checking cows I can see where they used a backhoe and installed a new flow line about 75 feet out of the easement taking out many tree's and tearing up the land. Also i can see where they have been cutting across the property with trucks and on foot going to the property next door instead of driving the road around. Any idea what i should do ? i don't want to sell them the easement where the new flow line is at as it's to far from my fence line. Any idea for compensation for damages tree's , surface damage ect ..? Thanks Rick

Dear Rick,

First, you have to make sure that you are right all the way around. For example, you might have an easement, but they may have the common law right to put a line where they want.

Second, you might or might not be legally entitled to damages. It all depends.

Third, I would really recommend a professional like a lawyer to sort things out.


Buddy Cotten


A very "good" recommendation about the lawyer; an oil & gas one!


State? Also, if you have an O&G lease, how did you get one where they cannot install flow lines? These are usually covered in the granting clause at the beginning of the lease.


I believe the recommendation from Buddy and Wade is the only way to go; but, interestingly, this is almost an exact post that I read a few years ago on one of the Eastern blogs, either the Haynesville or one of the other more Eastern blogs, like Pennsylvania, West Virginia or Ohio. In which State are you located and when did this actually occur? I don't doubt that this happens quite often; but, it would be nice to know at least the State and if you don't mine, any additional information, like operator/Lessee or pipeline company. If these guys did that to you, it sure would be good information for the rest of us that frequent the blog.

Thanks for your response Buddy

I personally wrote an addendum to the lease that was filed at the Johnson County court house to prevent any surface or subsurface activity except for a 10 ft easement along a fence line.

Johnson County Texas, It was a standard oil and gas lease, but I personally wrote an addendum to the lease that was filed at the Johnson County court house to prevent any surface or subsurface activity to protect my surface.

Johnson County Texas, I have been very happy with the operator so I don't want to throw them under the bus with bad pr. I want to talk with them first to see if they are willing to make things right.

Thanks for your response

Thanks Jimmie

That sounds like a good plan. Most all of these guys are involved with so many projects that they really don't take the time to do the necessary research before doing a job. Plus, very few of these jobs are done by the actual company that leased your property. They will just hand it over to a contractor and that contractor may hand it over to another contractor and forget about it. With that said, IMO, there is no excuse for not talking to the landowner before starting the project; but, to some degree that is standard protocol if they can get away with it. It is easier to get forgiveness than to get permission.

Good luck!