Matthew A. Dekovich

Partner
Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP

Houston
United States
T:+1 713 651 5147
Houston
United States
T:+1 713 651 5147
Matthew A. Dekovich

Matthew A. Dekovich

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Biography

Matthew A. Dekovich joined the Houston office in September 2005 and has been a partner since 2014.  Matt has an active trial and appellate practice in both state and federal courts, and he represents clients in private arbitrations as well.  His practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, including class actions, business torts, contract disputes, oil and gas, and qui tam actions.  Matt has extensive experience representing companies in oil and gas royalty litigation, including in the class action context.  He has also appeared numerous times in state and federal appellate courts and has presented oral arguments to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.  Matt has also written and spoken on various legal topics, including oil, gas, and energy law and class actions.

Prior to joining the Houston office, Matt was a law clerk for Judge Sim Lake of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas.


Professional experience

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JD, Harvard Law School, 2004
BA, University of Michigan, 2001

Matt was admitted to practice in Texas in 2004, and is also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of Texas and the District of North Dakota, and before the United States Courts of Appeals for the Third, Fifth, Eighth, and Tenth Circuits.

  • Texas State Bar
  • Representation of oil and gas producer in arbitration with landowner over calculation of royalties, including whether certain post-production costs may be deducted under governing instrument.
  • Defense of oil and gas producer in landowners' federal court lawsuit in Houston, Texas, alleging underpayment of royalties under lease royalty formula.
  • Defense of oil and gas producers in federal class action lawsuits in Kansas alleging underpayment of royalties in connection with wellhead sales of gas under percentage-of-proceeds contracts.
  • Defense of oil pipeline owner in federal class action lawsuits brought by Indian allottees in North Dakota alleging trespass and other claims.
  • Defense of oil and gas producer in federal class action lawsuit in Pennsylvania alleging breach of contract for failure to pay lease bonuses.
  • Defense of oil and gas producers and other payers in federal class action lawsuits in Oklahoma and Wyoming alleging breach of statutory obligation to pay interest on late payments to interest holders.
  • Defense of midstream company in federal class action lawsuit in Colorado asserting claims premised on producer's alleged underpayment of oil and gas royalties.
  • Representation of oil field pipe processing company in three-week breach of contract trial in federal court in Houston, Texas.
  • Defense of oil and gas producer in a qui tam lawsuit alleging underpayment of federal royalties on oil production from offshore oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Prosecution of numerous condemnation actions in Texas on behalf of midstream company for interstate oil pipeline project.
  • Defense of an oil and gas producer in federal court lawsuit in Ohio involving claims arising from a lease assignment transaction.
  • Defense of insurance company in a qui tam lawsuit in Houston, Texas, concerning claims submitted to the National Flood Insurance Program.
  • Defense of an oil and gas exploration and production company in federal court lawsuit in Houston, Texas, alleging it had trespassed on territory in the South China Sea to which the plaintiffs claimed entitlement.
  • Defense of a federal class action lawsuit in North Dakota alleging that various individuals and companies aided and abetted the United States in an alleged breach of fiduciary duty; the case involved the Bureau of Indian Affairs' approval of oil and gas leases entered into by allottees.
  • Defense of a county hospital in federal § 1983 lawsuit in Texas asserting constitutional law claims in connection with hospital resolution regarding exercise of physician staff privileges. 
  • Representation of a medical school in three-week arbitration over ownership of disputed funds.
  • Representation of both appellants and appellees before the U.S. Court of Appeals in a variety of cases, including those involving federal constitutional claims, qui tam claims, oil and gas issues, and contract claims; argued twice before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. 
  • Chambers USA, Nationwide, Oil and gas Litigation, Chambers and Partners, 2022
  • Texas Rising Star, general litigation, Thomson Reuters, 2008 - 2018
  • Co-author, "Texas Cases Reject Claims that Royalties Are Owed on Off-Lease Use of Gas Where Leases Contain a 'Free-Use' Lease Fuel Clause and an 'at the Well' Royalty Clause," Institute for Energy Law – Oil & Gas E-Report, Issue 1, March 2022
  • Co-author, "The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Class & Group Actions," USA Chapter, 2018-22
  • Co-author, A Practitioner's Guide to Class Actions (Marcy Hogan Greer & Amir Nassihi eds., ABA 2d ed. 2021) (Co-author of Chapter 16, "Daubert Challenges in Class Certification")
  • Co-author, Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts (Robert L. Haig ed., ABA & Thomson Reuters 5th ed. 2021) (Co-author of Chapter 176, "Energy")
  • Co-author, "BlueStone v. Randle: Supreme Court of Texas Holds that Producer Could Not Deduct Post-Production Costs when 'Gross Value Received' Royalty Clause Controlled, and Must Pay Royalty on Off-Lease Use of Gas Not Covered by 'Free Use' Lease Fuel Clause," Institute for Energy Law – Oil & Gas E-Report, Issue 2, June 2021
  • Co-author, "Texas Supreme Court allows producers paying royalties to deduct post-production costs," Norton Rose Fulbright – Legal Update, March 2019
  • Co-author, A Practitioner's Guide to Class Actions (Marcy Hogan Greer ed., ABA 2d ed. 2017) (Co-author of Chapter 16, "Daubert Challenges in Class Certification")
  • Co-author, Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts (Robert L. Haig ed., ABA & Thomson Reuters 4th ed. 2016) (Co-author of Chapter 150, "Energy")
  • Co-author, "Dispute Resolution in 50 Jurisdictions Worldwide," Getting the Deal Through, Texas Chapter, 2013-2016.
  • "Litigation Challenges to the 2010 Deepwater Drilling Suspension: An Overview," ABA's Energy and Natural Resources Litigation Committee Newsletter, Vol. 1, No. 2, April 2013.
  • Co-author, "Daubert Challenges in Class Certification," A Practitioner's Guide to Class Actions, American Bar Association, 2012 Supplement.
  • Co-author, "Tort Claims: Waste, Subsurface Trespass, and Negligence," Trends in Energy Disputes 2011, Fulbright & Jaworski LLP, 2011
  • Speaker, "Conflicts in Unexpected Places: Potential Ethical Traps When Advising on Royalty Reporting and Payment," Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Special Institute on Federal and Indian Oil & Gas Royalty Valuation and Management, Houston, Texas, October 25, 2018
  • Speaker, "Royalty Class Action Litigation and Update," Colorado Bar Association CLE Program - "Oil, Gas and Mining: Current Issues," Denver, Colorado, September 15, 2016
  • Speaker, "Power Disputes," Norton Rose Fulbright Energy Academy, Houston, Texas, November 2015
  • Speaker, "Royalty Litigation," Norton Rose Fulbright Energy Academy, Houston, Texas, November 2014
  • Speaker, "30(b)(6) Depositions," Norton Rose Fulbright Litigation School, Houston, Texas, February 2014
  • State Bar of Texas
  • Houston Bar Association
  • Texas Bar Foundation, Life Fellow