Steven P. Otillar

Partner, Houston


“brings a good level of knowledge” to transactions in the energy space...appreciated by his clients for delivering “very fast responses” while peers acknowledge him as “smart and good to work with.”
Chambers Global 2018


Acclaimed by respected professional directories as a leading figure in the energy field, Steven is a valued counsel to clients seeking to develop, finance, and execute acquisitions and divestitures of US domestic and emerging markets oil & gas projects, both onshore and offshore.

Steven's reputation is based on a track record of more than 23 years, handling high-profile projects and transactions in territories across much of the globe under both Texas and English law. In the United States, his work includes asset-based acquisitions, divestures and joint ventures for private equity-backed and publicly traded E&P companies and oil field services companies. Internationally, he has helped IOCs and NOCs develop upstream, midstream and downstream projects in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Prior to joining the firm, Steven was a partner at another Houston based law firm. He is the immediate past President of the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators and currently serves on the Executive Committee for the Institute for Energy Law (IEL) in the Center for American and International Law, and is an editor of the Oil, Gas and Energy Law (OGEL) journal.

Bars and Courts
Texas State Bar
Solicitor of England and Wales
Juris Doctor
University of Houston

Law Center

Bachelor of Arts
Southwestern University


Representation of E&P companies with acquisitions and divestitures across the United States valued in excess of $3 billion.*

Representation of a client regarding unitization matters in Mexico.*

Representation of several clients negotiating joint operating agreements with Petroleos Mexicanos, including a super major as well as a smaller independent.*

Representation of an independent oil and gas company with establishing a branch in Argentina and acquiring an unconventional exploration and production block in the Vaca Muerta.*

Representation of a major OFS company with the negotiation and structuring of a multi-billion dollar investment with PetroAmazonas in Ecuador.*

Representation of a downstream energy company with respect to the development and finance of a brownfield refinery in the Carribiean.*

Representation of the financial restructuring team regarding the restructuring of a major offshore drilling company, including the subsequent liquidation of dozens of drilling rigs and lift boats around the world.*

Representation of a Mexican governmental agency regarding the implementation of energy reforms for the country's first international oil and gas licensing round.*

Representation of a publically traded company with the development of multiple onshore unconventional gas production sharing contracts in China.*

Representation of a large publically traded oilfield services company with alternative vendor participation programs in multiple jurisdictions to acquire equity and participating interest shares of oil and gas exploration projects in Malaysia, including offshore and onshore distribution infrastructure.*

*Matters prior to joining White & Case

Speaking Engagements

"Special Considerations in Unitization Agreements", Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, Houston, Texas, 2018

"International Expansion: Issues and Opportunities in Markets Abroad", Institute for Energy Law Oil Field Services Conference, Houston 2018

"International Deepwater vs Onshore – Considerations in the Decision Making Process", North America Prospect Exposition (NAPE), Global Business Conference, Houston, Texas, 2018

"Upstream Financing in Offshore Oil and Gas", Buenos Aires, 2018

"Human Rights & Environmental Disputes", AIPN/ICDR Dispute Resolution Conference, Mexico, 2017

"The Future of Oil and Gas", Rice AIPN, Houston, Texas, 2017

"Update on Mexico: Foreign Investments in Pemex", Texas Land Institute Conference, Houston, Texas, 2017

"Unitization Issues", International Oil & Gas Law, Contracts, and Negotiations Conference, Houston, Texas, 2017

"New Deals and Projects in Mexico's Energy Sector in 2017: US $100 Billion and Counting", IEL 4thMergers, Acquisitions & Divestitures Conference, Houston, Texas, 2017

CFO Roundtable: "Managing the Money, What Keeps You Up at Night?", AIPN International Petroleum Summit, Houston, Texas, 2017


"Mexico's Round 3.1", White & Case Client Alert

"The New Natural Gas Age in Mexico", Project Finance International

Chapter 'United States' in the publication Oil and Gas Decommissioning: Law, Policy and Comparative Practice, Second Edition, published by Globe Law and Business.

"Optimism South of the Border", Project Finance International

"Mexico's Energy Industry: Midstream Regulations", Energy Law Report

"Yearbook 2015: Mexico's Energy Industry in Review", Mexico Business Publishing

"Master Limited Partnerships South of the Border: A New Financing Scheme to Fuel Mexico's Energy Infrastructure", Mexico Energy and Business Magazine

"The Future of Mexico's Energy Industry", The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel

"Lex Petrolea and the internationalization of petroleum agreements: focus on Host Government Contracts", Journal of World Energy Law & Business

Awards and Recognition

Selected as a Leading Lawyer in Energy by The Legal 500

Selected as Expert Guides' Guide to the World's Leading Energy Lawyers

Selected as Expert Guides' Guide to the World's Leading Lawyers - Best of the Best in Energy

Recognized as a leading practitioner in Latin America, Energy & Natural Resources by Chambers & Partners

Recognized as a leading practitioner in Latin American Investment by Chambers & Partners Global and Chambers USA

Named to The Legal 500's Mexico Private Practice Powerlist

Selected as a Leading Lawyer in Projects & Energy by The Legal 500 Latin America

Selected by Who's Who Legal as one of the world's leading oil and gas lawyers

Selected as "Who's Who in Energy" by the Houston Business Journal

"Member of the Year" and "President's Award Recipient" of AIPN

Named a "Rising Star" by Texas Lawyer