Akin Gump has added oil and gas attorney Michael J. Byrd as a partner in the firm’s energy practice in Houston. Byrd’s practice emphasizes upstream M&A transactions. He comes to Akin Gump from Baker & McKenzie, where he served as chair of that firm’s North America oil and gas practice group.
Byrd has counseled clients in acquisitions and divestitures of producing properties and oil and gas companies, and provided advice on upstream transactions, such as farm-outs, exploration agreements, and other joint ventures, as well as on operating agreements and seismic agreements. He has worked with oil and gas companies on issues affecting their day-to-day operations, and on leasing and conveyancing transactions, and his experience also includes US shale areas.
Additionally, in the past, Byrd has worked on disputes involving trespass and conversion, breach of contract, lease termination, nonpayment of royalty, surface access, operating agreements, and title and environmental defects asserted in connection with purchases of producing properties.
A former petroleum landman, Byrd is board certified in oil, gas, and mineral law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, and is chairman of the committee that writes and grades the exam for such certification. He is also a speaker and author who has published articles on energy matters for publications such as the State Bar of Texas Oil, Gas and Energy Resources Law Section Report, and Landman. Byrd received a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Texas, and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Texas School of Law, both with honors.