Nicholas P. Laurent
Nick Laurent is a partner in the Austin office of Barron, Adler, Clough & Oddo, PLLC where he exclusively represents landowners in eminent domain, inverse condemnation, land use, and real property transactions and litigation. Nick has represented landowners in all phases of the condemnation process, including pre-suit negotiations, in special commissioner hearings, before state and federal trial courts, and on appeal before Texas intermediate appellate courts and the Supreme Court of Texas. His clients range from individual landowners and ranchers to publicly traded Fortune 50 companies, franchise and independent hotel and restaurant owners, family offices, mineral owners, nationwide and local real estate investment trusts, self-storage owners, churches and large religious institutions, commercial, industrial, residential and multifamily developers, international real estate investors, multinational corporations, and other large institutional entities.
Nick’s eminent domain and real property rights practice extends across the state of Texas, from El Paso to Beaumont and from the Panhandle to the Rio Grande Valley, in addition to cases in Oklahoma, North Dakota, Virginia, Georgia, and Colorado. He has represented landowners in eminent domain matters pursued by the federal government, the State of Texas, regional mobility and toll road authorities, most major Texas counties and several rural Texas counties, every major Texas city, all of the major oil/gas pipeline and midstream companies, all of the major electric transmission providers and rural electric cooperatives, municipal utility districts, special utility districts, water authorities, water districts, and other condemnors. His broad experience covers a variety of real property takings, including road and highway projects, oil/gas underground pipeline easements, oil/gas pipeline surface sites, electric transmission line easements, underground water and sewer pipeline easements, above ground water tower takings, raw water intake facilities, drainage easements, inundation easements, railroad acquisitions, border wall takings, flood levee projects, and the acquisition of billboards and billboard ground leases.
In addition to handling statutory eminent domain matters, Nick has litigated the breadth and scope of utility easements on behalf of landowners in injunction proceedings following upgrades and other projects and has pursued inverse condemnation claims on behalf of landowners as well as claims under the federal “Big” Tucker Act and the Texas Tort Claims Act. He also represents landowners in contested cases on power line routing before the Public Utility Commission of Texas and the State Office of Administrative Hearings.
Prior to joining Barron, Adler, Clough & Oddo, PLLC, Nick was a partner with McGinnis, Lochridge & Kilgore, LLP in Austin where he practiced commercial litigation, including eminent domain, real property and land use, partition matters, oil and gas matters, business disputes, secured finance matters, bankruptcy matters, and complex multiparty receivership matters in state and federal courts both in Texas and elsewhere. While practicing at McGinnis, Lochridge & Kilgore, LLP, Nick represented clients in several appellate matters in state and federal appellate courts and presented oral arguments before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans and the Texas Third Court of Appeals at Austin.
Nick is a member of the State Bars of Texas and North Dakota and has been admitted to practice in the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth and Eighth Circuits, the Federal Court of Claims, and the United States District Courts for the Western, Eastern, Southern and Northern Districts of Texas. He has been appointed Vice-Chair of the Land Use and Environmental Group of the American Bar Association’s Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law for the 2022-2023 term and previously served as Chair of the Condemnation Committee for the 2018-2019, 2019-2020, 2020-2021, and 2021-22 terms as well as the Vice Chair of the same committee for several prior terms.
As a frequent author and lecturer on eminent domain and condemnation issues, many of Nick’s papers and articles have been published in legal journals and cited and referenced in numerous other journals and scholarly publications.
In his free time, Nick can be found spending time with his wife and young son and daughter or on the golf course, usually losing more golf balls than he cares to admit.
Nick graduated with a B.B.A. in Finance from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas in 2005. He attained his law degree in 2008 from the University of Tulsa College of Law in Tulsa, Oklahoma where he graduated with highest honors, served on the Energy Law Journal, and was awarded the Order of the Curule Chair, the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Joe Rudd scholarship and the Energy and Mineral Law Foundation scholarship.
- Speaker, Utility Easements: A Look at New Acquisitions and Existing Easements, ALI Eminent Domain and Land Valuation Litigation CLE (Feb. 2023)
- Quoted in “Austin property fight: Who owns $3M Tarrytown lot, and who owes its $670K in unpaid taxes?,” Austin American-Stateman news article, https://www.statesman.com/story/news/local/2022/11/04/austin-tarrytown-land-property-travisi-county-670000-unpaid-taxes/69617183007/ (2022)
- Speaker, Austin Bar Association Eminent Domain Section, Attorney/Client Issues in Multi-Party Representation (Sept. 2022)
- Panel Participant, How Condemnor and Property Owner Counsel Prepare for the Battlefield, ALI Eminent Domain and Land Valuation Litigation CLE (Jan. 2022)
- Moderator, Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid: Supreme Court Weighs in on the Definition of Private Property, American Bar Association’s Real Property, Trust and Estate Law eCLE (Dec. 2021)
- Speaker, Eminent Domain in the Oilfield, Austin Bar Association Oil, Gas & Mineral Law Section (Nov. 2021)
- Speaker, Participating in the Condemnation Process, HalfMoon Education’s Texas Easements, Rights-of-Way, and Eminent Domain Seminar (Webinar Oct. 2021)
- Quoted in “Levee system’s integrity questioned as crews begin fixing more prominent breaches in South Texas,” KRON news article, https://www.kron4.com/border-report-tour/levee-systems-integrity-questioned-as-crews-begin-fixing-more-prominent-breaches-in-south-texas/ (2021)
- Speaker, Participating in the Condemnation Process, HalfMoon Education’s Easements, Rights-of-Way, and Eminent Domain Seminar (Webinar Dec. 2020)
- Speaker, Participating in the Condemnation Process, HalfMoon Education’s Easements, Rights-of-Way, and Eminent Domain Seminar (Webinar Aug. 2020)
- Co-Speaker, Cutting-Edge Issues in Utility Easement Acquisitions, 19th Annual Eminent Domain Superconference (Austin 2020)
- Speaker, Participating in the Condemnation Process, HalfMoon Education’s Easements, Rights-of-Way, and Eminent Domain Seminar (Austin 2019)
- Quoted in “Legal experts: Emergency declaration may not be quickest way to build wall,” Texas Tribune article, https://www.texastribune.org/2019/03/11/legal-experts-emergency-declaration-may-not-be-quickest-way-build-wall/ (2019)
- Speaker, Special Presentation: Eminent Domain and the Border Wall, Political and Legal Perspectives, Eminent Domain and Condemnation Conference (Seattle 2019)
- Speaker, Podcast Debate on The Texas Oil & Gas Podcast, Pipeline Eminent Domain and Landowner Rights (2019), (iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/episode-97-debate-danny-vu-nick-laurent-eminent-domain/id1211918019?i=1000431109624&mt=2), (Spotify: spotify:episode:47g6GSTL54jXnt2q567cnP), (Spreaker: https://www.spreaker.com/user/9550540/texas-oil-and-gas-podcast-episode-97)
- Panelist, University of Texas Hispanic Journal 2019 Symposium: This Land is Whose Land? (Austin 2019)
- Co-Presenter, Eminent Domain and the Border Wall: Political and Legal Perspectives, Thomson Reuters Practical Law Public Sector Webinar (2018)
- Speaker, Pipe(line) Dreams: Common Utility and Other Condemnation Issues, Texas Land and Mineral Owner’s Association Statewide Member’s Meeting (San Antonio 2018)
- Published Co-Author, United States-Mexico Border Wall: The Past, the Present, and What May Come, American Bar Association Real Property, Trust & Estate Law Journal, Vol. 53, No. 1 (Spring 2018).
- Co-Presenter and Author, Federal Border Wall Acquisitions: Political and Substantive Condemnation Law Perspectives, CLE International Eminent Domain Conference (Las Vegas 2017)
- Author and Speaker, Recent Condemnation Issues; Compensation in power line and pipeline cases—new thoughts on an old subject and U.S./Mexico border wall: the past, the present, and what may come, 41st Annual Page Keeton Civil Litigation Conference (Austin 2017)
- Published Co-Author, Pipe(line) Dreams Post-Denbury Green, 48 St. Mary’s L.J. 699 (2017)
- Panel Moderator, Do Acquisitions by Private Pipeline Companies Pass Constitutional Muster – North Dakota and Trans-Pecos Projects: Can They Really Do That? What is the Public Purpose?, American Bar Association, Real Property, Trust & Estate Law Section’s 29th Annual Spring Symposia (Denver 2017)
- Author and Speaker, Condemnation of Private Property for Water Projects from the Landowner’s Perspective, State Bar of Texas 18th Annual Changing Face of Water Rights Course (San Antonio 2017)
- Co-Author with Roy Brandys, Utilities, Inverse Condemnation and More – Point/Counterpoint on Key Eminent Domain Issues from Landowner’s Perspective, CLE International Eminent Domain Superconference (Austin 2017)
- Co-Presenter with Blaire Knox, Pipe(line) Dreams Post-Denbury and Other Pipeline Valuation Issues, Austin Bar Association Oil, Gas and Mineral Law Section monthly meeting (Austin 2016)
- Co-Author with Roy Brandys, Just Compensation in Utility Takings: Thinking Outside the Box, CLE International’s National Eminent Domain Conference (Las Vegas 2016)
- Author and Panel Participant, Pipeline Condemnation Post Denbury, Texas Bar CLE Advanced Oil, Gas & Energy Resources Law (Houston 2016).
- Panel Moderator, Future of The Woodlands/Springwoods Village, Growing Through the Downturn (The Woodlands 2016).
- Speaker, 2014-2015 Condemnation/Eminent Domain Case Law Update, San Antonio Real Estate Discussion Group (San Antonio 2016).
- Author and Speaker, 2014-2015 Condemnation/Eminent Domain Case Law Update, Eminent Domain: Right to Take Issues & Challenges (Houston 2015).
- Author and Speaker, A Day in the Life of a JOA- Selected Daily Operational Issues, South Texas College of Law 2011 Energy Law Institute (Houston 2011); Published 25 TEX. OIL & GAS L.J. 1-7 (2012).
Nick Laurent is a member of the Real Estate Council of Austin and the Oil, Gas & Energy Resources Law Section of the State Bar of Texas.