Monthly Archives: July 2020

My Recent Presentations/Interviews

Over the last couple of months, I’ve done a number of presentations and interviews on a number of different topics.  I hope that some of this content might be helpful for you and your operation. Key Laws for New Landowners (East Texas New Landowner Series) A group of Extension agents in East Texas led by Kaycee Davis hosted an educational series for new landowners.  I was part of the program, speaking on key laws for new landowners.  In this 50-minute presentation, I covered the need for liability insurance,… Read More →

July 24, 2020 Weekly Round Up

We’ve made it to another Friday!  Many of you saw my post on Twitter a couple of weeks ago about how dry we were back at my parents’ ranch.  I’m happy to report they’ve received 3″ of rain in the last week.  You’ll see water standing in the rows in the photo below.   It was a sight for sore eyes, for sure!   * US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upholds registration for Enlist Duo herbicide.  In a much-anticipated decision, the Ninth Circuit issued an opinion… Read More →

2020 Rural Land Value Trends Report

Each year, the Texas Chapter of the American Society of Farm Managers & Rural Appraisers publishes the Texas Rural Land Value Trends report.  This document provides helpful, interesting information for Texas landowners on both average property value and lease rates for agricultural land across the state.  They recently released their 2019 report.  [Click here to download.] The average price per acre in Texas increased by 6.4% from last year to $2,972/acre.  The publication divides the state into 7 regions, and then further divides each region into sub regions. … Read More →

Win for Texas Landowner in Pipeline Condemnation Appeal

Recently, the First District Court of Appeals in Houston sided with a landowner who challenged the eminent domain authority of a pipeline company seeking to condemn property.  The case is important for landowners and helps to further flesh out the facts that a pipeline company must be able to show in order to be a “common carrier” and illustrates some considerations in proving fair market value.  [Read full opinion here.] Background  The Hlavinkas own 15,000-16,000 acres of land in Brazoria County, which they purchased in 2002 for the… Read More →

July 10, 2020 Weekly Round Up

Happy Friday!  We are looking at a high of 108 today in the Texas Panhandle.  I hope you are all staying cool and healthy. Here are some of the agricultural law stories in the news over the past week. *Texas Wildlife Association Annual Convention available online.  The Texas Wildlife Association has curated a wonderful annual convention and has posted every session online, available to anyone, for free!  This includes my 30 minute presentation on landowner liability, which you can watch by clicking here. *USDA seeks comment on potential… Read More →

Texas Supreme Court Holds Farm Animal Liability Act Inapplicable to Ranchers & Ranch Hands

The Texas Supreme Court issued a divided opinion on a case involving the death of a ranch employee and determined the Farm Animal Liability Act does not apply to “ranchers and ranch hands.”  This interpretation limits the scope of the Act and is important for livestock owners to be aware of. [Read full opinion here.] Background The Waaks raise Charolais cattle in Fayette County.  In 2005, they hired Raul Zuniga to work part time with the cattle, landscaping, and cutting hay.  In 2008, he began working full-time for… Read More →

July 3, 2020 Weekly Round Up

Happy Independence Day!  I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable holiday.  Here are a few of the ag law stories in the news over the past couple of weeks. *Dicamba update.  As you recall from this prior post the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an order vacating registrations for three over-the-top dicamba products for soybeans and cotton.  Shortly thereafter, the Environmental Protection Agency issued a cancellation order, which allowed certain existing stocks to be used through July 31.  [Read blog post on… Read More →