It is unlawful for oil and gas companies to avoid competing with one another when leasing, by agreeing not to exceed certain per acre lease bonus or royalty payments or by agreeing not to compete with each other in seeking to acquire leases in the same area or from the same mineral owner.
Mineral owners injured by such anti-competitive agreements among
oil and gas companies may recover three times actual damages.
PRICE FIXING occurs when oil and gas company competitors agree on how much bonus and royalty are to be offered to mineral owners or agree that their offers will not exceed a certain amount.
MARKET ALLOCATION occurs when oil and gas company competitors agree to carve up a geographic area, each agreeing not to compete for leases in each other's designated territory.