Kentucky Court Weighs $24 Million Royalty Verdict

Aug 28, 2012

An attorney for a group of southern Kentucky landowners says a $24.7 million verdict over unpaid gas drilling royalties by a Texas company should stand.

A.V. Conway on Tuesday told a panel from the Kentucky Court of Appeals that Atmos Energy violated a contract his clients signed to receive one-eighth of all royalties from gas drilled on their lands in Edmonson County. Charles English, the attorney for Houston-based Atmos Energy, told the judges his client did nothing wrong.

Jurors initially awarded the landowners $31.35 million in 2011. Post-trial motions knocked $7 million off the damages.

Judge Joy Moore, who presided over the panel hearing the case at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, told attorneys a decision in the case would be forthcoming "in the next couple of months."