Nicholas Johnson, Bailey Glasser Photo

Nicholas S. Johnson


Nicholas Johnson skillfully litigates complex commercial and environmental disputes throughout the country. Prior to joining Bailey Glasser, he distinguished himself as a trusted in-house lawyer for the some of the country’s largest publicly traded mining and energy companies.

Nick’s diverse practice includes complex litigation over large “deals gone wrong,” including mineral development agreements, sale-leasebacks, financial derivatives, insurance contracts, recoupment agreements, LLC or partnership agreements, and UCC sales contracts, to name a few. He is one of the few lawyers who can also pivot from litigation and just as artfully craft complex commercial documents to ensure a business runs smoothly.

He also solves complex environmental and reclamation compliance and permitting issues for energy clients, having recently negotiated favorable groundwater restoration agreements with the State of Illinois and worked on intricate mixing zone applications for discharge of surface waters.

Nick is a regular speaker on issues of interest to mining and energy companies. He is a repeat presenter at the Energy & Mineral Law Foundation, having also served as the co-chair of its fall program. Nick has also been invited to speak to the National Council of Coal Lessors and the Society for Mining Metallurgy and Engineering (SME)’s Annual Conference and Expo as well as the Current Trends in Mining Finance.

Government Service / Previous Employment

  • Assistant General Counsel, Foresight Energy (2014 - 2015)
  • Assistant General Counsel, Alpha Natural Resources (2011 - 2014)
  • Corporate Counsel, Massey Coal Services, Inc. (2010 - 2011)


J.D., West Virginia University College of Law, 2006, Order of the Coif; Publication Editor, West Virginia Law Review

B.A., West Virginia University, 2003, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, University Honors Scholar


  • District of Columbia
    West Virginia
  • US District Court, Northern District of West Virginia
  • US District Court, Southern District of West Virginia


Representative Matters

  • Resolved dispute over complex financial derivative products governed by an ISDA Master Agreement in the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy case in New York in bet-the-company litigation involving allegations of breach of a complex sale-leaseback transaction and of veil piercing of multiple layers of a Master Limited Partnership
  • Settled dispute over interpretation of the recoupment provision in a $320 million royalty agreement
  • Successfully resolved $100 million dispute over failure to develop mineral properties
  • Defense of hundreds of product liability cases over the safety of personal protective equipment
  • Prosecution of injunction actions against competitors in a trade secret and non-solicitation dispute
  • Prosecution of a federal court action over the misuse and misapplication of federal grant money and former federal property in Utah

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