Denton’s Fracking Ban: Will “Civil Authority” Insurance Coverage Apply To Lessees’ Loss Of Natural Gas Revenues?
On November 4, 2014, voters in Denton made that city the first in Texas to ban hydraulic fracturing within city limits.?á Within a day, lawsuits were filed by the Texas General Land Office and the Texas Oil and Gas Association, and state lawmakers and regulators voiced strong opposition to the ballot measure.?á Whatever the outcome of these legal challenges, lessees holding interests in the more than 270 natural gas wells affected by the ban potentially stand to lose significant revenues in the interim while litigation remains pending. For energy companies, whose operations may be curtailed by Denton?ÇÖs ?Ç£Fracking Ban Initiative,?Ç¥ one alternative source of relief may be found in insurance.?á Most commercial property policies contain some form of ?Ç£civil authority?Ç¥ coverage, which generally insures against the loss of business income sustained by an insured when, as a result of covered physical loss or damage to other property, access to the… Continue Reading
The U.S. Departments of Labor (DOL), Health and Human Services (HHS), and Treasury issued guidance confirming that employers may not reimburse employees for the cost of individual health coverage, either on a pre-tax or post-tax basis. Additionally, the guidance makes clear that an employer may not offer high-risk employees a choice between cash and coverage under the employer?ÇÖs plan. The DOL will consider such an offer to be discriminatory. The FAQs can be found?áhere.