Texas tough, Dakota strong

Pagel Weikum - Attorney at Law

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Representing oil field workers and their families in cases involving accidents, injuries, burns and deaths.

ONE TEAM, TWO LAW FIRMS… LOOKING OUT FOR YOU.Williams, PLLC and Weikum Law, PLLC are Texas and North Dakota based law firms who have combined to represent victims of oil field accidents, oil field trucking accidents and to represent landowners damaged by the practices of the oil & gas industry in North Dakota and surrounding states. The two firms are made up of experienced trial lawyers who have actually tried oil & gas cases. The firms have combined their trial experience, their dedication to clients and their knowledge of the oil and gas industry in Texas and North Dakota to bring you a powerful team of attorneys ready to assist with your accident, injury, wrongful death and landowner rights claims. Williams, PLLC and Weikum Law, PLLC – Texas Tough and North Dakota Strong. Get the best of both worlds.

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History of Bakken Fields

The Bakken Shale formation in eastern Montana and western North Dakota owes its name to North Dakota farmer Henry Bakken on whose land the first betakenakken well was drilled.

The initial discovery of the Bakken shale was in the antelope field in 1953. The Woodrow Starr #1 drilled by Stanolind Oil discovered oil on a stem test. The well was completed for 536 barrels of oil and essentially no water. No further development of the Bakken occurred until 1956 when Northern Pump Co. drilled and completed the #1 Ella Many Ribs for 320 barrels of oil per day (BOPD). A few wells were drilled throughout the 1950s and 1960s.

While the rock formation of the Bakken was known to contain oil, the tight, impermeable reservoir or formation of the Bakken required the producer to drill into natural fractures in order to produce oil. The drilling technology was not present to produce from this formation, and development of the field was slow.

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Bakken Shale History and Overview

Oil is booming in North Dakota due in large part to new drilling technologies that have made the development of the Bakken field a reality. This is great for the Economy of North Dakota but, as with most great developments, it comes with a cost. These costs can be seen in increased truck traffic and threats to agriculture and the environment. Many of these costs can be reduced or eliminated if companies profiting from the Bakken Shale use safe drilling techniques and follow other well-established safety rules related to transportation and the environment. Following safe practices will enable North Dakota to reap the benefits of the Bakken while minimizing damage to the land and the people of North Dakota.

The Bakken Shale formation in Eastern Montana and Western North Dakota owes its name to North Dakota farmer Henry Bakken on whose land the first Bakken well was drilled.

The initial discovery of the Bakken Shale was in the Antelope Field in 1953. The Woodrow Starr #1 drilled by Stanolind Oil discovered oil on a stem test. The well was completed for 536 barrels of oil and essentially no water. No further development of the Bakken occurred until 1956 when Northern Pump Co. drilled and completed the #1 Ella Many Ribs for 320 barrels of oil per day (BOPD). A few wells were drilled throughout the 1950s and 1960s.

While the rock formation of the Bakken was known to contain oil, the tight, impermeable reservoir or formation of the Bakken required the producer to drill into natural fractures in order to produce oil. The drilling technology was not present to produce from this formation, and development of the field was slow.

In 1961 seismic technology was used by Shell Oil to discover the Elkhorn Field along the depositional limit of what has become known as the “Bakken Fairway.” The first Shell Oil well was completed in a remote region that was often shut-in during the region’s inclement weather. The Shell Oil well produced an average of 50 BOPD until 1964 when its casing collapsed and it was plugged and abandoned.

There was continued but gradual growth and development of the Bakken from 1976 through vertical production which confirmed the presence of hydrocarbons.

In 1987 Meridian Oil Inc. drilled and completed the first horizontal well in the Bakken. Meridian made a successful gas well that remained stable until additional wells were drilled nearby. Significant gas was produced from the well and it’s success led to the notable play in the upper Bakken Shale that lasted until the early 1990s.

The horizontal play that has led to the drilling boom of today started in North Dakota in 2004. Current estimates are that the Bakken is the largest oil development in the U. S. in the last 40 years. Conservative estimates are the the Bakken contains between 10-400 billion barrels of oil of which at least between 3-10% can be recovered. Continental Resources, a major operator in the area, maintains the figures are conservative and has expressed the belief publicly that between 24-40 billion barrels of oil will be recovered from the Bakken. Continental Resources is one of the largest operators in North Dakota.

LANDOWNER RIGHTS IN NORTH DAKOTA OIL FIELD CASES

Learning that an oil company wants to lease and drill on your property can be very exciting.  In the Eagle Ford of Texas some land owners have received more than $10,000 an acre to lease their property.  However, an unscrupulous oil company can turn that dream into a nightmare.  We represent landowners who have had their property damaged by the conduct of an oil company as well as those who have been treated unfairly in the payment of royalties and bonuses.

Many properties have been in the family for years.  The property is used for ranching, farming, and recreational activities such as hunting and fishing.  Improper drilling techniques, in a second, destroy property that has been nurtured and cared for for generations.   Landowners value their property and want those who drill on it to treat it with respect.  Blowouts can damage many acres of land and render it unusable.  They can literally destroy a families’ way of life as well as their livelihood.  Worse, hydraulic fracturing, when done improperly, can contaminate ground water rendering it unfit for human consumption or agriculture.  The North Dakota Industrial Commission, Department of Mineral Resources Oil and Gas Division recommends that surface owners check out the North Dakota Petroleum Council for frequently asked questions.

Oil and gas companies in North Dakota have been able to make a lot of money by completing wells quickly at relatively shallow depths. A number of the wells have been “fracked” to increase production. Because the oil companies are in such a hurry to drill the wells accidents are occurring at a high rate. When you combine the use of “fracking” with the fact the wells are relatively shallow, the potential for damage to the surface owner or adjacent landowner increases. In North Dakota there has been a high incidence of damage to landowners property by the oil companies either as a result of spills of drilling fluids such as “heavy” or calcium based water, oil or water based drilling mud, or any of the many down hole additives used to “stimulate” oil and gas production. “Fracking “ lawsuits have become common because of the contamination of the groundwater or health issues raised by migration of the fracking fluids underground.

The agricultural and farming industry still contribute a great deal to the North Dakota economy, and family farms and ranches are important to the way of life in North Dakota. Williams, PLLC and  Weikum Law, PLLC are committed to protecting the rights of the individual landowners, especially those family farmers and ranchers who have been operating for years. We do not believe that oil companies have the right to operate in a dangerous manner that injures either people or the environment.

There have been a number of articles in local papers about the pollution problems caused by spills of salt or calcium-based drilling water or other drilling fluids. Concern has also been expressed by farm and ranch organizations. The organizations have expressed concern that the agricultural industry in North Dakota, which still provides numerous jobs and a way of life for many families is being damaged beyond repair by the negligence of the oil and gas industry seeking quick profits.

At Williams, PLLC and Weikum Law, PLLC, we are committed to protecting both large and small landowners who have suffered pollution damage as a result of drilling activities. If you or your neighbors have had your land damaged or your livestock harmed by the drilling activities of the oil industry or as a result of pollution, call us today. We can help and we will work to obtain compensation for the damage to your property. If you or your family or neighbors have become ill or your livestock has become ill, call us today.

We also represent property and royalty interest owners in disputes when oil companies do not pay what they should.  Williams, PLLC has experience representing land owners in royalty dispute, drainage claims and bad faith pooling claims.

Oil and gas law can be complicated.  Law firms representing land owners need to be experience in obtaining information from the North Dakota Industrial Commission, Department of Mineral Resources Oil and Gas Division.  We can help you get the information you need to evaluate whether an oil company is treating you in accordance with the law. A good resource for land owners is the North Dakota Petroleum Council. If the oil company is not complying with the law, we can help you take the steps necessary to protect your rights.

The oil companies have lawyers working for them, but these lawyers do not always have your best interests in mind.  Put the experience of Williams, PLLC and Weikum Law, PLLC to work for you.

NORTH DAKOTA OIL & GAS TRUCK ACCIDENT LAWYERS

The enormous amount of oil truck traffic in the Bakken field is a sign of the bustling prosperity of the Bakken. Sadly it too often comes at a terrible price for the victims of accidents involving oil trucks.

These trucks have enormous size and weight making them difficult to control and requiring their drivers to exercise vigilance and caution. Unfortunately the business of the oil field is measured in speed and time – at the expense of vigilance and caution.

The victim pays the price for this tradeoff with serious injuries, staggering medical bills, wage loss and often with his or her life.

Weikum Law, PLLC and Williams, PLLC have extensive experience handling these oil truck accidents. We understand the rules governing the operators and owners of the oil trucks. We understand the short cuts the operators and owners of the oil trucks take to circumvent those rules. We understand the catastrophic impact these accidents have on you and your family. We understand how to make it right.

North Dakota Oil Field Injury Lawyers

Williams, PLLC and Weikum Law, PLLC have the experience to handle serious oilfield accidents anywhere in the world. With the increase in drilling operations, not only in North Dakota’s Bakken formation but in Texas in the Eagle Ford shale and other oil and gas formations across the state, we have seen a virtual explosion in the number of blow-outs, fires and resulting serious injuries, burns and deaths. Williams, PLLC is not a “Johnny-come-lately” firm with regard to oilfield injuries. Our lawyers have years of experience handling oilfield cases.

Williams, PLLC partner Justin L. Williams has been involved for almost thirty years in litigating serious blow-out, burn and death cases not only in Texas, but in North Dakota as well. For years Mr. Williams defended these very same type cases all over the world for the largest oil companies and service companies in the industry. Mr. Williams has been hired by and successfully tried cases for Halliburton Energy Services and Halliburton’s affiliated companies, Otis Engineering and Brown & Root. Mr. Williams also successfully tried and handled major oilfield litigation for Mobil Oil Corporation, Mobil Producing Texas & New Mexico, Chevron U. S. A., Pennzoil and Western Atlas. Mr. Williams was the lead attorney in the largest blow-out of the 1990’s, the onshore equivalent of 2010’s BP blow-out, the “DEEPWATER HORIZON” when he represented Halliburton in the “BIGHORN 3” blow-out and explosion outside Casper, Wyoming. Mr. Williams has also successfully defended Halliburton Nigeria and Halliburton Trinidad, as well as Mobil Nigeria LTD.

For the last 10 years Mr. Williams has brought the experience and knowledge he gained representing defendants and what he learned about the industry from surface cement to wireline, fishing to snubbing, BOP’s to choke manifolds, drilling underbalanced to mud additives, to work on cases on behalf of injured workers. Williams, PLLC has the unique experience of having its partners on both sides of major oilfield injury cases when years ago, as a defense lawyer, Mr. Williams defended both Halliburton and Mobil.

Williams, PLLC has successfully tried numerous oilfield cases. Their knowledge of the industry gives them an advantage over other plaintiff’s firms and gives you an equal playing field with the large firms who represent the defendants in major accidents. Williams, PLLC has a proven track record when it comes to settling or trying serious oilfield cases. Most importantly to you as the client, we not only will work to have your case tried or settled within 12 months, but we will make sure you the client are happy with the settlement or we will try your case for you. Our experience and track record gives you an advantage in getting your case settled but our respect for you as our client means we don’t settle unless you are satisfied with the result. We are unlike other Plaintiff’s firms who work to get the best settlement possible then “sell” you the client on that settlement. We believe we truly represent you, the client.

When you or a loved one comes in for a free consultation you will not have to explain oil field terms to our lawyers, we understand the different operations involved in drilling, producing and re-working a well and the dangers inherent in those operations. We take that knowledge and either obtain a settlement you are satisfied with, or we will try your case.

Attorney Justin Williams is licensed in North Dakota. We represent Plaintiffs who have claims in North Dakota on a case-by-case basis in conjunction with experienced North Dakota lawyers. Visit our web site again in the near future to view the arrangements we are making to ensure our North Dakota clients have the best of both worlds. We combine the best of our oilfield experience with some of the best trial lawyers in North Dakota to bring clients what we call “Texas Tough-North Dakota Strong”.

If you or a family member or friend has been injured in an oil field accident, call us at 361-885-0184 and speak with Justin Williams today. There are statutes of limitations which control the time frame in which you must bring suit that apply to every jurisdiction. Call us as soon as possible to ensure your case has the attention it deserves in a timely manner.

who we are

ONE TEAM, TWO LAW FIRMS… LOOKING OUT FOR YOU.Williams, PLLC and  Weikum Law, PLLC are Texas and North Dakota based law firms who have combined to represent victims of oil field accidents, oil field trucking accidents and to represent landowners damaged by the practices of the oil & gas industry in North Dakota and surrounding states. The two firms are made up of experienced trial lawyers who have actually tried oil & gas cases. The firms have combined their trial experience, their dedication to clients and their knowledge of the oil and gas industry in Texas and North Dakota to bring you a powerful team of attorneys ready to assist with your accident, injury, wrongful death and landowner rights claims. Williams, PLLC and Weikum Law, PLLC – Texas Tough and Dakota Strong. Get the best of both worlds.

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History of Bakken Fields

The Bakken Shale formation in eastern Montana and western North Dakota owes its name to North Dakota farmer Henry Bakken on whose land the first betakenakken well was drilled.

The initial discovery of the Bakken shale was in the antelope field in 1953. The Woodrow Starr #1 drilled by Stanolind Oil discovered oil on a stem test. The well was completed for 536 barrels of oil and essentially no water. No further development of the Bakken occurred until 1956 when Northern Pump Co. drilled and completed the #1 Ella Many Ribs for 320 barrels of oil per day (BOPD). A few wells were drilled throughout the 1950s and 1960s.

While the rock formation of the Bakken was known to contain oil, the tight, impermeable reservoir or formation of the Bakken required the producer to drill into natural fractures in order to produce oil. The drilling technology was not present to produce from this formation, and development of the field was slow.

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Contact our Oil Field Industry Injury & Accident Team

If you or a family member has suffered an injury related to the oil and gas industry in North Dakota, or if you are a land owner struggling with property damage or failure of the company to pay, our experienced attorneys understand the intricacies of dealing with the oil industry and may be able to help. Fill out the form below for a free consultation reviewing the merits of your case.

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North Dakota Oil Field Accident Attorneys

Williams, PLLC and  Weikum Law, PLLC are Texas and North Dakota based law firm who have combined to represent victims of oil field accidents, oil field trucking accidents and to represent landowners damaged by the practices of the oil & gas industry in North Dakota and surrounding states. The two firms are made up of experienced trial lawyers who have actually tried oil & gas cases.

Williams, PLLC partners have represented major operators and service companies involved in the oil & gas business not only in Texas but all over the world. Weikum Law, PLLC has not only handled major oil & gas litigation in North Dakota, but has extensive trial litigation with knowledge of both North Dakota law and the North Dakota legal system.

When you hire Williams, PLLC and  Weikum Law, PLLC, you get the best of both worlds. You get the extensive oil & gas knowledge both firms possess, and you get experienced trial lawyers who have a proven track record in oil & gas litigation. If you hire our firms, you as the client won’t have to explain why an oil or gas well has to have a surface cement job or why it is required to seal the well. You won’t have to explain what a wireline plug is or why “packers” aren’t football players who live in Green Bay.

Our lawyers have been involved in coil tubing, snubbing, cementing and fishing cases. We know the difference between fishing with a rod and reel and fishing with a wireline. Williams, PLLC partners have been involved in representing Halliburton and its related companies, both in the United States and overseas. CESW partners have represented major oil & gas operators both in the United States and overseas, such as Mobil Oil Corporation and its subsidiaries such as Mobil Producing Texas & New Mexico, Inc., as well as Chevron U. S. A. and Texaco, Shell and Pennzoil Exploration and Production, Inc. When representing injured oil field workers, this experience provides the attorneys at Williams, PLLC a unique knowledge of how these companies think and work.

Weikum Law, PLLC is not only experienced in litigating oil & gas cases in North Dakota but has had extensive success in representing accident victims in all types of cases throughout North Dakota. Weikum Law, PLLC knows North Dakota law and brings tenaciousness to the representation of accident victims that more than matches that of the oil company’s attorneys. Weikum Law, PLLC is Dakota Strong.

Williams, PLLC has never backed down from a good fight. Williams, PLLC is Texas Tough.

Williams, PLLC and Weikum Weikum Law, PLLC: together TEXAS TOUGH & DAKOTA STRONG. Providing experienced representation to injury and wrongful death victims of oil field accidents, burn accidents, trucking accidents as well as damage to landowners by the oil & gas industry.

Our North Dakota Oil Field Accident Team

Williams Attorneys, PLLC is a highly experienced Texas-based law firm whose attorneys have decades of knowledge and experience in handling oilfield accidents everywhere in the world. The attorneys of Williams Attorneys, PLLC have handled oil field injury cases throughout the United States including in the states of Texas, North Dakota, Louisiana and Wyoming. Our attorneys have handled cased involving offshore injuries in Trinidad, Norway, Nigeria, Mexico and Scotland. Our attorneys are here to represent the people who have been injured or suffered significant damages as a result of oil field injuries and the actions of oil companies. We also have the benefit and insight on how the oil companies will defend the case. We have attorneys who worked to defend these companies in cases such as yours and who have now taken up the cause of the injured party in seeking justice for their injuries. To learn more about our experience and attorneys, click here.

Weikum Law, PLLC is a law firm based in Bismarck, ND which has been handling cases in the Bakken and Western North Dakota for nearly two decades. Jeffrey Weikum has the experience, knowledge and local connections to provide the best service to you. Jeff is  licensed to practice in North Dakota, Montana, South Dakota and Minnesota. Mr. Weikum has handled oil field injury cases throughout the Bakken as well as serious product liability cases throughout this four state region. Jeffrey Weikum has tried, and obtained seven figure settlements for our clients, in a broad variety of death and serious injury and damages cases including oil field injuries, truck injuries, serious medical product defect injuries, pharmaceutical injuries, vehicle accidents and explosion injuries.

Williams Attorneys, PLLC and Weikum Law, PLLC have teamed up to provide premium, strong, experienced and effective representation to people who have suffered serious injuries in oil-related cases. We are Texas Tough, Dakota Strong for you.


Justin Williams

Justin Williams


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Jeffrey Weikum

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Sean Williams

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Ryan Williams

 

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