Judge OKs $119M Royalty Settlement Against Natural Gas Firm

An Oklahoma judge has approved a $119 million settlement in a class-action lawsuit that claimed a Chesapeake Energy Corp. affiliate underpaid natural gas royalties to owners in the past decade.

Mnet 121285 Chesapeake

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Oklahoma judge has approved a $119 million settlement in a class-action lawsuit that claimed a Chesapeake Energy Corp. affiliate underpaid natural gas royalties to owners in the past decade.

A Chesapeake Energy spokesman tells The Journal Record that the company is pleased that Beaver County District Judge Jon K. Parsley approved the settlement agreement.

Royalty owners had contended that Chesapeake Operating LLC improperly deducted expenses for marketing, processing, compression and other midstream services. They say that they were owed around $313 million in unpaid royalties from 2004 to 2014, for more than 11,800 natural gas wells in Oklahoma.

The judge said in his order that months of mediation and negotiation led to the settlement, ensuring fairness in the process.

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