Ag Law in the Field Podcast – Episodes 11-20

In case you may have missed them, I wanted to give a rundown of episodes 11-20 of the Ag Law in the Field Podcast, along with links to the website and show notes for each one as well.   [If you missed the recap of Episodes 1-10, click here.]   Remember, you can listen to the podcast on iTunes, your phone’s podcast app, or online at the links below.  I am always happy to take suggestions for topics of interest, so feel free to shoot me some ideas!

Episode 11 – Alice Kilborn (Employment Law – Hiring and Firing).  Alice is an attorney and HR professional, making her the perfect resource on employment law.  In this episode, we discuss best practices for employers when it comes to drafting job descriptions, interviewing, writing offer letters, drafting employee handbooks, and terminating an employee.  We also cover important legal concepts like at will versus contractual employment and discrimination in employment.

Episode 12 – Judd Gardner (Farm Bill).  Judd is a Senate staffer who is one of the most knowledgeable people I know when it comes to farm policy and the Farm Bill.  He gives a basic overview of the 2014 Farm Bill, we discuss the ARC/PLC commodity payments in detail, and then he offers his predictions for the next Farm Bill.

Episode 13 – Shannon Ferrell (Farm Transition Planning).  In our most popular episode to date, Shannon Ferrell and I talk about transitioning the farm or ranch to the next generation.  We cover estate planning, business succession planning, and a five-step process to craft a successful transition plan.  This is an episode that is relevant, interesting, and important for every farm and ranch family.

Episode 14 – Parks Brown (Rights of Surface Owners Dealing with Oil and Gas Production).  For Texas surface owners, the law regarding oil and gas production and the dominant estate rule is not only important but can frankly be a source of great frustration.  On this episode, I talk with Parks Brown, and oil and gas attorney in San Antonio about rights of surface owners and mineral owners, and some important tips to help surface owners protect their property.

Episode 15 – Pat Dillon (True Stories from a Small Town Lawyer).  Whether it is visiting clients in jail, representing gypsies, or citing the Bible in legal briefing, Pat Dillon has done it all.  Pat is a farmer and an attorney in his hometown of Sumner, Iowa, population 2,000.  On this episode, he shares some of his most interesting and entertaining stories from his years as a small town attorney.

Episode 16 – Ask an Ag Lawyer Program Recap.  In August, I met up with three fellow agricultural law attorneys–Jim Bradbury, James Decker, and Kyle Weldon– in College Station to conduct a session at the Texas A&M Beef Cattle Short Course called “Ask an Ag Lawyer.”  We had so much fun that we decided we should talk about some of the most interesting questions and topics that came up during our presentation.  We cover everything from tax valuation to groundwater rights, annoying neighbors to bulls out on the highway.

Episode 17 – Erin Hawley (Clerking at the US Supreme Court).  In this podcast episode, my childhood friend and fellow New Mexican, Erin Hawley, joins us to talk about her experience clerking at the United States Supreme Court.  Erin talks about the application process, what her year being Chief Justice John Roberts’ right-hand gal was like, and even shares how she met her husband in her clerkship office.

Episode 18 – Luke Ellis (Eminent Domain in Texas).  Luke Ellis has devoted his entire practice to representing landowners facing condemnation of their private property through eminent domain.  On the show, he discusses common projects where eminent domain is utilized, tips for landowners facing eminent domain, thoughts on calculating fair market value owed to a landowner, and changes he would like to see made to the Texas eminent domain law.

Episode 19 – Ashley Ellixson (“Ag Gag” Litigation Update).  “Ag gag” statutes–laws aimed at prohibiting undercover video investigations at agricultural operations–have been in the news a great deal this year.  Federal trial courts in Idaho and Utah have held these laws unconstitutional.  The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit just heard oral argument regarding the Idaho law on appeal.  Most recently, a law in Wyoming and another in Iowa are being challenged.  What are the legal claims being made and how are courts ruling on these issues?  Ashley Ellixson and I are here to discuss all of these issues.

Episode 20 – Trace Blair (Hunting Leases).  Only in Texas will you find an attorney who moonlighted as a hunting guide in college.  This experience makes Trace Blair the perfect guest to talk about negotiating and drafting hunting lease agreements.  We cover several legal issues, liability considerations, and key terms to include in your hunting lease.

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