Right of way agents working for the Red Oak Pipeline have been contacting landowners recently. Some landowners have received initial offers before the proposed easement is surveyed. Some survey crews have entered farms and ranches without permission. Landowner Condemnation Rights Attorney Philip Hundl talks about the latest information on the Red Oak Pipeline, and he talks about your rights as a landowner in the pipeline condemnation process. Call for an appointment at 800-266-4870 or click this link for a no-obligation case evaluation.
Summary of the Red Oak Pipeline Update Video
– Hi, my name’s Philip Hundl. I’m an attorney with the law firm of Wadler, Perches, Hundl and Kerlick. My practice focuses on representing landowners facing condemnation in eminent domain cases.
Today I’d like to update you on the Red Oak Pipeline. Red Oak Pipeline, LLC is the entity that is currently seeking easements from landowners. This is a large pipeline that begins in Cushing, Oklahoma. The pipeline will be going from Cushing to Wichita Falls as a 30 inch pipeline. Then from Wichita Falls, it’s going to run down to Sealy, in Austin County, as a 30 inch line. Then from Sealy, it’s going to split and run towards Beaumont as a 20 inch pipeline. Another branch of the pipeline from Sealy will go down to Corpus Christi, and that’s going to be a 30 inch pipeline. So this will be a large pipeline. (For a more detailed description of the route, please click this link to an earlier post about the Red Oak Pipeline.)
Right of Way Agents Are Contacting Landowners
Right now, I’m being contacted by landowners who have been contacted by right of way agents. Red Oak has hired different right of way acquisition companies, including Norfleet Land Services and Percheron, LLC. Percheron has an office in Katy.
These land acquisition companies have been hired to contact landowners, and to try to acquire these easements. The permanent easement for the Red Oak Pipeline is a 50 foot easement. The pipe is essentially in the center, and then 25 feet are on each side of the pipe for a 50 foot permanent easement area. The pipeline is also acquiring 60 feet of temporary workspace, which would normally be 50 feet on one side of the permanent easement and 10 feet on the other. So the total width of the permanent and temporary easements would be 110 feet at a minimum.
If the pipeline is going to be crossing a creek, a road, or a highway, then there’s an additional workspace that’s going to be required that could take up a lot more of a landowner’s property.
Landowners Are Receiving Initial Offers Before Surveys Are Completed
Red Oak is being very active buying through their acquisition agents to go out and acquire easements. Landowners are being contacted prior to even surveying the proposed easement on the property. Landowners are also being contacted and are receiving initial offers without actual survey crews on the ground entering the property and conducting surveys.
Survey crews may also be conducting surveys without consent of the landowners. Sometimes we see that and most the time we don’t see that. As a landowner, anyone who wants to enter your property needs to get your permission, unless you’re ordered by the court to allow them on your property. So if you haven’t been provided any legal notice of a court proceeding or notice of a temporary restraining order allowing a pipeline company to access your property to conduct a survey, then no one should be on your property conducting a survey. So please be aware of that.
We Recommend that Landowners Meet with an Attorney BEFORE Signing Agreements
Once again, I recommend that you don’t sign anything until you’ve conferred with an attorney who can explain your rights and answer your questions about how these documents affect your rights. I have my own proposed temporary access agreement. These pipeline companies and their right of way agents have their own version of a temporary access agreement.
The temporary access agreement is going to be used to allow people to enter your property to conduct surveys, conduct archeological surveys, and environmental surveys. You should sure that the document is going to protect your land and protect you from the activities that these folks will be conducting while they’re on your property.
So right now with the Red Oak Pipeline, please pay close attention to any request to enter your property. Make sure that it’s in writing. Make sure you understand that temporary access agreement takes into consideration the things that are important to you. You should be notified when the survey crews intend to go on your property. You can limit access to only during the week. Those are all things that can be proposed and should be proposed if they’re important to you.
You also may be receiving a Landowner Bill of Rights with an initial offer. Please read that and review that. That’s important. It explains to you a little bit more about the condemnation process.
So with that, good luck. As always if you have any questions, please consult with an attorney who handles pipeline condemnation cases. Good luck, thanks.
Let Us Help You Through the Condemnation Process
It’s easy for landowners to get confusing, conflicting information when dealing with right of way agents who are working for the pipeline company, not the landowner. Call 800-266-4870 for an appointment with Mr. Hundl or click this link for a no-obligation case evaluation.