Gentry Locke attorneys keeps things moving down the line – the rail line.  We understand the complex industry issues related to rail transportation, regulation, legislation, and industry associations.  We have worked on behalf of our clients in many settings, from private negotiations, to regulator’s hearing rooms, to the halls of the legislatures.

We are proud to work on issues related to Class I railroads, members of the Shortline railroad community, developers, rail customers, and governments.  We have extensive experience working issues involving multiple railroads, between railroads and their customers, between governmental entities and railroads, and between railroads and their suppliers.  Our extended team of railroad and construction experts are knowledgeable in areas related to contracting for construction projects to move more freight by rail.

We deal with rail-related issues, including:

  • Entering into contracts among railroads, with suppliers
  • Dealing with takeover battles, mergers, and acquisitions
  • Litigating the scope of federal preemption
  • Complying with market entry and exit regulation
  • Determining the scope of common carrier and legal obligations unique to freight rail
  • Advising on relationships among freight railroads and passenger or commuter railroads
  • Facilitating rail line sales and abandonment of inactive rail lines, negotiating acquisitions, and obtaining all necessary corporate and regulatory approvals
  • Advising clients on regulatory issues arising under the ICC Termination Act of 1995
  • Negotiating rate and service contracts, trackage rights agreements, and joint facility agreements
  • Helping shippers and railroads to acquire underutilized rail lines through the feeder railroad development and offer of financial assistance forced-sale processes
  • Organizing rail line acquisitions by several clients, dealing with regulatory authorization and compliance matters, real estate issues and operating contracts
  • Advising on Rails-to-Trails issues
  • Defending third party casualty claims at crossings and on railroad property
  • Defending FELA claims

We support groups working to advance rail transportation, including our membership in the Virginia Railroad Association.

John Scheib, who leads the firm’s Rail group, is a former Chief Legal Officer to a Class I railroad and has extensive experience with many railroads, regulators, and trade associations.

Have questions? Contact us.