Combining a historical understanding of the structural development with extensive current involvement in master limited partnership (MLP) transactions and ongoing analysis of MLP trends puts Vinson & Elkins in a unique position to assist our clients. V&E lawyers were involved with the first MLP to go public through an underwritten initial public offering (IPO) — Transco Exploration Partners, Ltd. — in 1983. Since the qualifying income requirement was enacted in 1987, our lawyers have advised on 80 percent of all natural resource or real estate MLP IPOs completed.
Because of the breadth and depth of our firm’s experience in structuring MLPs and addressing the complex tax, business, and securities issues associated with MLPs, our lawyers are often involved with structuring and implementing MLP acquisitions, combinations, restructurings,
recapitalizations, and alternative investment securities, as well as equity and debt offerings, analysis of partnership agreements, credit facilities, employee benefits and executive compensation, FERC, environmental, and litigation matters.
Our lawyers have experience with virtually all industries in which MLPs are active today, including midstream, upstream, maritime and shipping, coal, propane and heating oil, downstream, cemetery, timber, fertilizer, wholesale distribution of refined products, and royalty and mineral interests,
as well as general partner IPOs. In recent years, V&E has been involved in a substantial majority of major MLP structural developments, including the offering of previously untested asset classes, the evolution of distribution structures, and the creation of novel partnership interests.
Because of our extensive representation of MLPs, we believe it is in the industry’s best interest to work closely and maintain relationships with the regulatory, administrative, and legislative authorities relevant to MLPs. We often represent clients in SEC-related
review and enforcement matters and work with U.S. Treasury Department, Internal Revenue Service, and legislative bodies with respect to tax and legislative initiatives. We are also an active participant in the Master Limited Partnership Association (MLPA), including
representation on the MLPA’s board. These relationships and our continuing efforts keep us on the forefront of these and other matters affecting MLPs.
An Introduction: Master Limited Partnerships
To receive an overview of MLPs, including their capitalization and economic structure, typical financial metrics used by MLPs or appearing in their organizational documents, governance and fiduciary-like duties, and certain considerations in preparing for or undertaking an initial public offering, request a copy of our MLP Primer below.