Skip to Content

My father was in the oil business and I worked as a landman before law school. As an oil and gas attorney now for more than 35 years, I’ve had dealings with people in all sorts of roles in upstream oil and gas companies. If someone says we are contemplating doing thus and such, I can speak with some authority about the legal and business implications.

Craig Townsend advises companies in the upstream oil and gas sector with operations both onshore and offshore in Texas and along the Gulf Coast. He has provided counsel on the negotiation and documentation of acquisitions and divestitures of producing and non-producing properties, exploration and seismic ventures, pooling and unitization issues, leasing and conveyancing, examination of land and mineral titles, energy related financing transactions, management arrangements, consulting agreements and services contracts. He has represented a variety of public and private, domestic and international companies, independents and individuals, including several large Japanese petroleum companies.

He also advises on the acquisition and disposition of farm and ranch real estate and related private mineral interests.

In addition to advising on a broad array of transactions and related issues, Craig serves as outside general counsel to several small to mid-size oil and gas companies. His extensive knowledge of the industry enables him not only to address legal concerns, but also to assist with a full range of planning, operational and business issues.

Purchase and sale transactions are what I enjoy the most. It’s about putting together the concept that the parties have agreed to and making it happen – facing all the challenges and finding creative ways to resolve them.


  • Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law, J.D., 1981
  • Stephen F. Austin State University, B.A., 1978

Bar Admissions

  • Texas

Areas of Practice


Named in Best Lawyers® in Natural Resources and Oil and Gas Law since 2009.

Professional Affiliations & Memberships

Membership in the State Bar of Texas Section on Oil, Gas and Energy Resources Law and the Houston Bar Association's Section on Oil, Gas and Mineral Law.

  • Handled numerous acquisitions and divestitures totaling in the billions of dollars – some large, some small, and some in between, but all equally important to our clients.
  • Served as lead counsel on a $1.3 billion acquisition of offshore oil and gas properties.
  • Provided legal and business advisory services to clients with multi-generational contacts.
  • Served as oil and gas counsel in a litigation matter against market leader in natural gas industry and prevailed on breach of contract/specific performance claims through appeal.
  • Assisted client which prevailed in complex multi-party arbitration arising out of bankruptcy matter relating to prior withdrawal rights and obligations.