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The Dangers of Fracking Negotiation

Hank Lerner came to the Risk Management & License Law Forum at the 2014 REALTORS® Conference & Expo in New Orleans last week with a two-slide presentation.

The first slide was one word, in stark black and white: “No.”

The second slide? “Seriously, No.”

The director for law and policy for the Pennsylvania Association of REALTORS® was answering a question that’s cropped up for a lot of REALTORS® in his state and others that have seen an influx of energy companies eying underground shale deposits: Should I get involved in negotiating mineral rights leases for home owner clients?

“Negotiating with drilling companies is not something that you are likely to be an expert on,” Lerner told the audience. He noted that in order to do due diligence in these situations, knowledge of shale depth, geological strata, local pipeline availability, and details about the plans of the individual drilling company are paramount. “In Pennsylvania, some of the most up-to-date gas law is from the 1890s. A couple of you will be able to dig into it and be successful, but the rest of you won’t.”

Instead, Lerner suggested real estate professionals locate resources for their clients.

“Don’t be the guy; be the guy who’s got a guy,” he said. Seek out certified mineral managers and get to know which lawyers are steeped in mineral rights laws as well as the state and local fracking legislation that governs your area. “Develop your resources. Find them, connect with them, and do your job.”

Source: Daily Real Estate News | Monday, November 10, 2014