Oil and Gas

The law firm of Day Carter & Murphy LLP has substantial experience representing major and independent oil and gas companies in the acquisition and financing of properties and in all phases of exploration, development and production, as well as in product transportation and sale. The firm’s experienced oil and gas attorneys regularly render title opinions (all types) for oil and gas company clients, assist with suggested curative work, and work closely with division order analysts. With respect to acquisition title opinions, the scope of the firm’s representation depends on the needs of the client and ranges up to and includes all due diligence.

The firm’s Oil & Gas attorneys provide comprehensive legal services to regional, national, and global oil and gas clients of all sizes, from independents to fully integrated companies, from sole proprietorships to Fortune 500 corporations. The firm’s attorneys bring extensive experience and specialized knowledge to each project or transaction to ensure that clients achieve successful outcomes and resolutions.

The firm has routinely been at the forefront of critical issues within the California oil and gas industry and regularly provides advice and guidance in structuring complex and innovative transactions, as well as advising oil and gas clients on day-to-day operations. The firm’s Oil & Gas attorneys handle numerous and substantial transactions within the industry including:

  • Negotiation and documentation of acquisitions and sales of producing and non-producing properties and midstream assets
  • Preparation of development contracts, such as farm-out agreements, operating agreements, participation agreements, joint venture agreements, line well agreements, and unit agreements
  • Issuance of oil and gas title opinions, including acquisition, drill site, and division order
  • Due diligence in mergers and acquisitions
  • California environmental and regulatory compliance assistance
  • Counseling on complex issues including horizontal drilling, subsurface trespass, hydraulic fracturing, surface access, seismic licensing, secondary and tertiary operations, and operational issues

The Firm’s Oil & Gas attorneys also include accomplished litigators who are intimately familiar with the oil and gas industry. This expertise and experience enables the firm’s lawyers to quickly assess risks and swiftly resolve problems so clients can focus on achieving business goals.


Represent major and independent oil and gas and geothermal companies in the preparation of drilling, acquisition, division order, supplemental, and financing title opinions on onshore, offshore, private, state, and federal lands.

Represented numerous oil and gas companies, energy companies, and lenders as special counsel in connection with numerous multi-million dollar project finance transactions, including the negotiation, drafting, and analysis of transaction documents, the conduct of real property title due diligence and the issuance of financing title opinions, and related project finance advice and counsel.

Represent major and independent oil and gas, geothermal, and energy companies in a full range of title, due diligence, and transactional matters as part of numerous acquisitions of producing and non-producing properties, to date the collective value of which has been in the billions of dollars.

Represented oil and gas companies in complex offshore leasing proposals and related title due diligence for financing transactions.

Represent oil and gas companies through the permitting approval processes in California for small and large-scale development projects and natural gas pipelines.

Represented an oil and gas company with greenhouse gas assessment and mitigation under the California Environmental Quality Act for a development project requiring county approval.

Obtained land use and endangered species take authorization for oil field development.

Assist clients with linear facilities such as gas pipelines traversing jurisdictional wetland areas with endangered species.

Advise clients on the interpretation and enforcement of the numerous provisions in Joint Operating Agreements and their related Exhibits, including Gas Balancing Agreements and COPAS Accounting Procedures.

Represent clients on aquifer exemptions and other permitting issues relating to Class II underground injection wells.

Advise clients on the interpretation of oil and gas leases, including allowable royalty deductions, consequences of a cessation of production, notice of default issues, suspension of royalties and consent to assign requirements.

Counsel major and independent oil and gas companies in all matters of legal and regulatory compliance affecting the exploration and production industry, including permissible royalty deductions, subsurface pass-through rights, oilfield development, project permitting and development and related Subdivision Map Act compliance, SB4 compliance, waste treatment and disposal, etc.

Represent major and independent oil and gas, geothermal, and energy companies in all types of commercial loan and finance transactions and related counseling, including senior and subordinated credit facilities, second lien financing, working capital financing, and debt restructuring transactions.

Represent major and independent oil and gas and geothermal companies in the negotiating, drafting, and analysis of all types of operational and transactional agreements, including purchase and sale agreements, joint operating agreements, unit agreements, farmout agreements, development and exploration agreements, leases, surface use agreements, easements, and power purchase agreements.

Represented client in surface owner dispute concerning surface access for oil and gas drilling operations and conducted related title review.