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Texas Capitol

Will a Voter ID Ruling Trigger a Special Session?

By Miriam Rozen |

Judge Catharina Haynes raised the prospect of Texas lawmakers meeting this summer for a special session to fix any flaws in the controversial statute.

Cara and Julio Baez with Blue as a puppy

Couple Alleges Breeder Refuses to Return Their 4-Year-Old Dog

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Houston couple sued a Rosharon Vizsla breeder, alleging she failed to return their family pet after taking him to a dog show.

Richard Warren Mithoff, founder, Mithoff Law, Houston

Mithoff Tapped to Lead Steering Committee in Volkswagen Emissions Litigation

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

An Austin judge appointed Houston plaintiffs lawyer Richard Mithoff as lead counsel for the Texas counties that have sued Volkswagen Group of America and Audi of America, alleging violations of the Texas Clean Air Act.

Hunton & Williams Eying Transatlantic Tie-Up with UK’s Addleshaws

Hunton & Williams is in merger talks with midmarket U.K. firm Addleshaw Goddard, Legal Week has learned, with Addleshaw managing partner John Joyce expected to discuss the negotiations with partners Tuesday evening. Joyce visited the U.S. last week to speak to Hunton & Williams alongside a delegation that included his executive team and Addleshaw’s divisional managing partners.

Hogan Lovells, Dechert Work on $600M KBR Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Hogan Lovells represents KBR in the Houston-based company's pending acquisition of Wyle in a deal valued at $600 million. Wyle, of El Segundo, California, is using a team from Dechert.


Haynes and Boone Partner Pens Book on the History of Oil & Banking

By Miriam Rozen |

For Buddy Clark, what started as an acceptance to speak before a group of lawyers, ballooned into a five-year project and ultimately led to his new book about the history of the financing of the oil industry.

Bradley Snead, Partner, Wright Close, Houston Texas.

Texas Supreme Court Rules for Schlumberger Subsidiary in Trade Secrets Dispute

By Angela Neville |

The Supreme Court of Texas recently handed down a decision in favor of M-I SWACO, a subsidiary of oil technology giant Schlumberger, which had charged National Oilwell Varco with stealing trade secrets.

George Parker Young

Chesapeake, Total E&P Reach $52.5M Settlement With Royalty Owners

By Angela Neville |

Chesapeake Energy and Total E&P USA recently reached a global settlement under which they will pay out a combined total of $52.5 million to more than 13,000 clients of two Texas-based law firms who claimed they were shortchanged related to their natural gas royalties.

Ken Starr

Prominent Baylor Law School Alumni Shocked by Ken Starr's Reported Dismissal

By John Council |

Baylor University President Ken Starr, who is best known as the special prosecutor for investigating former President Bill Clinton's affair with an intern, has reportedly been dismissed from his post by the school's Board of Regents—a move that shocked many prominent alumni of the school.

Doctor's Homemade Model of Male Anatomy Helps Her Prevail in Negligence Case

By Miriam Rozen |

Marc Calvert remembers when he recognized that his client, family physician Lilette Daumas, would have the stamina to defend herself successfully against a negligence claim at a trial.

Robert C. Hilliard, a partner in Hilliard Muñoz Gonzales in Corpus Christi.

Discovery to Proceed in Fisherwoman's Case Against Hilliard, Cracken

By Miriam Rozen |

A Houston state court has allowed discovery to proceed in a civil lawsuit against John Cracken from Dallas and Bob Hilliard from Corpus Christi, despite the two plaintiffs lawyers' motion to seek a stay in the litigation.

Texas Supreme Court Rules Tort Reform Laws Cap Civil Penalties Applied Against Wal-Mart

By John Council |

In a decision that's a huge favor for Wal-Mart, the Texas Supreme Court recently ruled that state's tort reform laws that limit plaintiffs' noneconomic damages also apply to civil penalties—including $3.9 million in penalties a federal jury leveled against the nation's largest retailer.

Which Dallas Firm Topped Texas' Diversity Ranking?

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Dallas-based Haynes and Boone is the Texas firm with the highest ranking on The American Lawyer's Diversity Scorecard 2016.

Houston Flooding Insurance Coverage Considerations

By Brian S. Scarbrough and Jan A. Larson |

As city leaders in Houston continue to work out the city's notorious flooding problems, commercial property damage and business interruption insurance is more critical than ever in an effort to recover and rebuild in the event of flooding.

Court: Florida Ratepayers Don't Owe for Oklahoma Drilling

The Florida Supreme Court rejects a state Public Service Commission decision putting Florida Power & Light customers on the hook for Oklahoma natural gas drilling.

Seven Big Texas Firms on The Second Hundred

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Seven Texas firms were among the second hundred highest-grossing firms in 2015 and appear on The American Lawyer's The Second Hundred.

Susan Hawk, newly elected Dallas DA

Dallas DA Seeks Additional Treatment for Mental Illness

By John Council |

After she missed several planned public meetings, Dallas County District Attorney Susan Hawk announced she is seeking additional treatment for her mental illness.

Texas Supreme Court building

Texas Supreme Court Finds Disregard of the Law is No Reason to Vacate Arbitration Awards

By John Council |

Take a deep breath before agreeing to binding arbitration because the Texas Supreme Court has just ruled that trial courts cannot vacate an award because an arbitrator manifestly disregarded the law.

Simple Steps for Healthcare Providers to Secure Patient Data

By Carrie L. Douglas and Debra L. Innocenti |

Statistics show it's a good time for a healthy shot in the arm for risk management, and there are some simple steps that organizations can take protect patient information.

Norton Rose Fulbright Will Move Some Support Jobs Out of Texas

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Eighteen Texas support positions at Norton Rose Fulbright are among 170 worldwide that will be moved to The Phillippines this year.

Latham Represents Company in $13B Pending Merger

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Latham & Watkins represents FMC Technologies in the Houston company's pending merger with French company Technip, creating a $13 billion company.

Houston Lawyer Wins Appeal for Amputee

By John Council |

David Carlson was allegedly burned so badly by an infrared medical treatment device that it caused him to have part of his leg and foot amputated. He also lost his products liability case before a Houston federal jury after the defense presented one expert witness—the chiropractor who thought the treatment was a good idea.

Andrew Hanen.

Texas Judge Blasts Justice Department Lawyers for Conduct in Immigration Case

A federal district judge on Thursday excoriated U.S. Department of Justice lawyers who are defending the Obama administration's immigration plan, issuing an extraordinary order that questioned the department's policing of attorney ethics and ordered certain government lawyers to take an annual ethics class.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, United States Supreme Court

Sotomayor's Embrace of Mandatory Pro Bono Garners Praise and Pushback

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor is winning praise for re-energizing the movement toward mandatory pro bono for lawyers with her recent remarks on the subject, but some advocates in Big Law think the requirement poses significant challenges and won't work for everyone.

Texas Appeals Court Rules Alaska Pipeline Partners Are Bound by Unocal Duties

By Angela Neville |

The First District of Appeals in Texas recently dealt with a tangled business partnership between BP Pipelines (Alaska) Inc., ConocoPhillips Transportation Alaska Inc., Exxon Mobil Pipeline Co. and former partner Unocal Pipeline Co. involving Trans-Alaska Pipeline business operations.

Newsmakers: Week of May 16

By Mary Alice Robbins |

Sean M. Whyte has joined Gardere Wynne Sewell in Dallas as a partner. Whyte has a multifaceted litigation practice that involves complex commercial litigation, consumer class actions and products liability.

Stephen Pezanosky is an attorney at HaynesBoone in Dallas.

Texas Bankruptcy Courts Beat Others Nationwide for Oil and Gas Bankruptcies

By Miriam Rozen |

Texas federal bankruptcy courts finally have surpassed others in the nation, including those in Delaware and New York, in terms of the cumulative debt they are administering in oil and gas bankruptcies, according to a report issued by Dallas' Haynes and Boone.

Bill Cosby

West Palm Attorney Takes on Sexual Battery Case Against Bill Cosby, Hugh Hefner

A West Palm Beach lawyer is at the center of a new sexual battery lawsuit against Bill Cosby and Hugh Hefner.

Inventor Sues Samsung Again About Same Patent, Different Products

By Miriam Rozen |

Get ready for a rematch between Samsung Electronics and Japanese inventor Masakazu Ushijima.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gestures while speaking to the press in New York City, after his five-state super Tuesday win.  April 27 2016.

Trump Names 11 SCOTUS Picks, Bypassing Big Law

Presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump's list for potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees is heavy on federal appellate judges and former clerks for conservative justices but light on big names in politics and private practice.

Sonia Sotomayor.

Sotomayor Pushed Mandatory Pro Bono. What Do You Think?

Justice Sonia Sotomayor this week said she's in favor of "forced labor"—mandatory pro bono. Not a new concept, sure, but the justice's remarks generated considerable buzz. Tell us what you think. Good idea, or bad? How would it work? Join the conversation.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Don R. Willett

Trump Wants to Name Texas' Most Prolific Judicial Tweeter to the U.S. Supreme Court

By John Council |

Donald Trump would elevate the "Tweet Laureate of Texas" to the U.S. Supreme Court if given the chance as the presumptive GOP presidential nominee recently listed Don Willett on his short list of people he'd promote to the high court.

Bizarre Scientology Case Comes to Bizarre Conclusion

By John Council |

In a move that stunned her lawyers, a Texas woman has dropped her lawsuit alleging that the Church of Scientology engaged in a relentless and bizarre harassment campaign against her—including sending her a sex toy at work.

Donald Clark, Chairman, with Butler Snow, Jackson, Mississippi.

Mississippi Firm Opens Dallas, Austin Offices

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Butler Snow, based in Jackson, Mississippi, hires three laterals to launch two offices in Texas.

Energy Future Creditors Protest Accelerated Bankruptcy Plan

By Angela Neville |

Energy Future Holdings Corp. is running into strong headwinds from creditors as it tries speed up its schedule in its $42 billion Chapter 11 restructuring by seeking the court's approval of its new plan.

Houston Lawyer Sues For Share of Big Fee

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Alejandro Padua of Houston and his firm sued Houston plaintiff's lawyer Jason Gibson and his firm, alleging they failed to share in fees for a suit that ended with a $55.8 million judgment.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor (2009)

Sotomayor Urges Mandatory Pro Bono for All Lawyers

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor said Monday that all lawyers should be required to provide pro bono legal services. "I believe in forced labor" when it comes to improving access to justice for the poor, she said during an appearance at the American Law Institute's annual meeting in Washington. "If I had my way, I would make pro bono service a requirement."

After Slow Start, M&A Lawyers Are Optimistic About Second Half of 2016

By Miriam Rozen |

Texas deal lawyers are working fast and furiously on oil and gas industry mergers and acquisitions. But the total value of such deals in that industry nationwide dropped in the first quarter of this year, compared with the same time in the prior year.

Cha'Mira Keener, South Texas College of Law student

Student Overcomes Bleak Background, Earns Law Degree

By Angela Morris |

Graduating law student Cha'Mira Keener's interest and passion for juvenile law comes from the personal understanding of what it means to a child when no one stands up for you.

Robert C. Hilliard, a partner in Hilliard Muñoz Gonzales in Corpus Christi.

Plaintiff Lawyers Hilliard, Cracken Seek to Stay Lawsuit Against Them

By Miriam Rozen |

Plaintiff lawyers John Cracken from Dallas and Bob Hilliard from Corpus Christi have asked a Houston state court to stay a civil lawsuit filed against them. The lawsuit is based on allegations that Cracken and Hilliard helped falsify clients.

Electronic 'Smoking Gun' Evidence in Family Law Cases Has Potential to Backfire

By Jessica W. Thorne and B. Wyn Williams |

Their actions could subject them to civil liability and criminal punishment, and even affect the admissibility of the very smoking guns they are looking to find when they access their spouse's cellphone.

AI Pioneer ROSS Intelligence Lands Its First Big Law Clients

Baker & Hostetler is the first law firm to make public that it has licensed the artificial intelligence product using IBM’s Watson technology for bankruptcy matters.

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C.

SEC Alleges Two Texas Attorneys Assisted in $13.8M Loan Scam

By John Council |

Two Texas attorneys are facing fraud allegations after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission accused them of collecting $13.8 million from investors for escrow accounts, keeping a portion of that money for themselves and using the rest for undisclosed risky investments.

Ropes & Gray Seeks $10.9M in Fees in Sabine Oil Bankruptcy

By Angela Neville |

Ropes & Gray is requesting approximately $10.9 million in attorney fees for five months of work representing the official committee of unsecured creditors in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy case involving Sabine Oil & Gas Corporation.

V&E, Sidley Work on $4.4B Energy Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Sidley Austin represents Range Resources of Fort Worth in its pending acquisition of Houston's Memorial Resource Development Corp. for $4.4 billion including $1.1 billion in assumed debt.

 Mark Kelly

Houston Firm Opens Office in Taipei

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Vinson & Elkins opened an office in Taipei, Taiwan on May 16 and plans to focus on complex commercial litigation, intellectual property, renewable energy and corporate matters there.

Texas Supreme Court building

Texas Supreme Court Upholds State's School Funding Formula

By Will Weissert |

Texas' complicated school finance system is constitutional, the state Supreme Court unanimously ruled Friday — a surprise defeat for the 600-plus school districts that endured more than four years of costly legal battles hoping judges would force the Republican-controlled Legislature to fork over more funding.

Ryan Sitton, Railroad Commissioner of Texas

Railroad Commissioner Talks About International O&G Business Prospects at Dallas Symposium

By Angela Neville |

In remarks emphasizing the importance of international business opportunities for the Texas oil and gas sector, Railroad Commissioner of Texas Ryan Sitton recently discussed attractive prospects related to Mexico's new energy policy changes and overseas energy markets at the 28th Annual Texas Energy Council Symposium that was held at the George W. Bush Institute in Dallas.

Ernest Aliseda, Member, Dykema Cox Smith, McAllen

GC Moves to Firm in South Texas

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Ernest Aliseda leaves his general counsel position to return to the trial practice as a member of Dykema Cox Smith in McAllen.

2017 J.D. candidate Kimberly Elmazi, of Texas Tech University School of Law.

Law School Helps Students Stay Emotionally Fit

Texas Tech's mental health program includes mandatory meetings for all first years.

Waco Plaintiff Lawyer for West Blast Victims Predicts No Drama in Lawsuits Due to ATF Findings

By Miriam Rozen |

No dramatic turns will take place in pending litigation simply because federal officials determined and announced this week that a criminal act triggered the explosion of a fertilizer plant in the Central Texas town of West in 2013, predicts Steve Harrison, a partner in Harrison Davis Steakley Morrison, a firm based in Waco, 30 minutes south of where the blast took place.

Adam Myron, Gerald F. Richman and Josh Spoont with Richman Greer.

National Class Action Filed by Uber Drivers in Miami

Attorneys in West Palm Beach, Miami and San Francisco file a nationwide class action against Uber for allegedly violating labor laws by not paying its drivers minimum wage and overtime.

Round Rock Man Gets Prison Time for Estimated $4.5M O&G Ponzi Scheme

By Angela Neville |

William Risinger, owner of RHM Exploration based in Round Rock, Texas, was recently sentenced to 160 months in federal prison and ordered to pay over $3.7 million to his victims related to an oil and gas investment scheme that raised an estimated $4.5 million from investors.

Baker Botts, Orrick Handle $407M Shale Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Baker Botts represents EQT Corp. of Pittsburgh in its pending purchase for $407 million, of assets from Houston's Statoil USA Onshore Properties, which turned to Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe.

Judge Rules Sam Wyly Deceived IRS, Owes Possibly $1B in Back Taxes

By Miriam Rozen |

A Dallas federal bankruptcy judge sided with the IRS and against onetime Texas billionaire Sam Wyly.

Judge Issues Sanctions In Battle About Hair Removal Lasers

By Miriam Rozen |

A federal court battle that began when 44 of 134 hair removal lasers were deemed lost has led to sanctions against a client of Dallas' Friedman & Feiger.

Krysta De Lima, General Counsel, NextDecade.

NextDecade Seeks FERC Approval for $20B Texas Gas Pipeline and Export Facility

By Angela Neville |

NextDecade, The Woodlands, Texas-based energy company, recently applied for federal authorization to site, construct and operate the Rio Grande LNG, a proposed LNG export facility near Brownsville, Texas, and the Rio Bravo Pipeline, a 137-mile pipeline system that will provide the facility with its feed gas.

Joel Blake, Stibbs & Co., Spring Texas.

Newsmakers—Week of May 9

By Mary Alice Robbins |

Joel Blake recently joined Stibbs & Co. in Spring as an associate. He practices business and energy law, covering a wide variety of corporate matters.

LaDawn Conway, Alexander Dubose Jefferson & Townsend LLP, Dallas TX.

Texas Supreme Court Reaffirms that Apache Doesn't Have to Pay on Expired O&G Leases

By Angela Neville |

The Texas Supreme Court recently turned down a request to rehear a motion filed by McDaniel Partners pertaining to its royalty battle with Apache Deepwater and reaffirmed that Apache was not obligated under the lapsed oil and gas leases to continue paying royalties.

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday, March 25, 2014, during arguments in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc.

If Tolerance for Religious Expression in Public is Waning, What Does That Mean for the Workplace?

By Lee Winkelman and Alan Bush |

Let's unpack how in-house counsel can help HR make the call between religious expression and harassment.

Gibson Dunn and Morgan Lewis Work on Friendly's Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher represents Dean Foods of Dallas in its pending acquisition of the manufacturing and retail ice cream business from Friendly's Ice Cream for $155 million in cash, while Friendly's turned to Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.

Dallas Lawyer Facing 11 Grievances Resigns Law License

By Angela Morris |

A Dallas lawyer has resigned his law license because he faced 11 grievances alleging misconduct like completely missing hearings for clients, neglecting their cases and failing to supervise an employee who the lawyer knew was previously convicted of unauthorized practice of law.

Michael O'Connor, partner, O'Connor & Craig, Houston, Tx.

Houston Attorney Beats Big Bank, Big Attorney Fees at First Court of Appeals

By John Council |

Francisco Calleja-Ahedo sued Compass Bank for refusing to refund payment of an alleged $38,700 forged check on his account—only to end up owing the bank $49,186 in attorney fees after losing his case before a Harris County district judge.

Otway B. Denny Jr.Partner, Norton Rose, Houston TX.

Houston Lawyer Gets Prestigious Award From Texas A&M

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Otway Denny, a partner in Norton Rose Fulbright in Houston, received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Texas A&M University.

Tips on Lawyer Maternity, Paternity Leave

By Angela Morris |

Lawyers who are expecting babies need to know some of the same things about family leave as anyone else, but they also need to do special planning to hand off their matters to colleagues and monitor cases when they're gone.

Tom Vick Jr.

Next State Bar of Texas President-Elect Tom Vick Jr. Discusses Plans

By Angela Morris |

When Tom Vick Jr. was campaigning, he highlighted the importance of the bar's review by the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission, which has recommended changes for lawmakers to consider in 2017.

In Focus: The Mental Health of Law Students

In our report about mental health on law campuses, we examine why law school exacerbates problems with depression, anxiety and substance abuse — and what administrators and fellow students can do to help.

Texas Litigators Oppose American Bar Association Paper on Nonlawyer Firms

By Angela Morris |

"We as lawyers are charged with upholding the honor of the law, the courts, fellow lawyers and our system of justice," said the letter by TADC, TTLA and Tex-ABOTA. Businessmen don't have that calling, it added.

Judge Larry Meyers of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals

Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Judge Nonsuits His Voter ID Claim

By Angela Morris |

The plantiffs plan to refile their lawsuit after they have a chance to gather more evidence, said their attorney, Andrew Sommerman.

Vinson & Elkins, Latham Handle $775M Pipeline Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Vinson & Elkins represented a conflicts committee that advised Phillips 66 Partners on its pending $775 million purchase of a pipeline and assets from Phillips 66, which used Latham & Watkins.

Rob Ammons, The Ammons Law Firm, partner, Houston.

Poultry Company Agrees to $27.5M Settlement With Crash Victims

By Miriam Rozen |

In Waco, after two mediation sessions but before a trial, a family received a court-approved settlement of $27.5 million from Sanderson Farms, a poultry company. The family brought claims against Sanderson Farms for injuries its mother and baby suffered in a car crash with a vehicle owned by the company and driven by its employee.

Senior U.S. District Judge David Ezra

Federal Judge Vacates Rule 11 Sanctions Order: Win for Pro Se Plaintiffs and Former Attorney

By Miriam Rozen |

U.S. Senior District Judge David Ezra in Austin vacated his previous Rule 11 sanctions order against plaintiffs and their former lawyer.

Gino J. Rossini, partner, Hermes Law.

Dallas-based Hermes Law Promotes Gino Rossini to Partner; Plus Other 'On The Move' News

By Mary Alice Robbins |

Gino J. Rossini has been promoted to partner in Dallas-based Hermes Law. Rossini's practice is devoted to handling post-trial and appellate matters in state and federal court as well as providing related support at all stages of litigation.

Hunt County Jury Decides on 60-year Prison Sentence for Former Prosecutor

By Miriam Rozen |

Royal Mullins convicted of murder in shooting death of Curtis "Topper" Gray, a 50-year-old Greenville resident. "Every murder is a tragedy, but in this case Royal Mullins had reason," the local newspaper reported Mullins defense lawyer told the jury. "You would have hoped someone had done it for you."

Austin Firm Changes Name, Management

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Eminent domain firm Barron & Adler is now Barron, Adler, Clough & Oddo.

David Glickler

Judge Gets 3 Days In Jail for DWI

By Angela Morris |

"As an elected official, I need to be tougher on myself and respectful of the system, and not allow my decision on that night to become a burden," Hays County Court-at-Law No. 2 Judge David Glickler wrote.

Jim Harrington

Plaintiff Files Motion to Disqualify Austin Civil Rights Lawyer in American with Disabilities Act Case

By Miriam Rozen |

A paraplegic plaintiff pursuing a claim filed under the American with Disabilities Act has filed a motion to disqualify well-known Austin civil rights lawyer James Harrington, who represents the defendants.

Ken Paxton

State Bar of Texas Monitoring Ken Paxton's Criminal Case

By Angela Morris |

If Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is convicted of crimes and sentenced, the matter would be ripe for the Commission for Lawyer Discipline to file a compulsory discipline petition seeking Paxton's disbarment.

Steve Mostyn of Houston’s Mostyn Law Firm

Damages Company Sues Mostyn Law Firm Alleging Unpaid Invoices

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Quinney Holdings, which does business as Loss Solutions, sued Mostyn Law Firm of Houston and founder Steve Mostyn, alleging the defendants have failed to pay about $700,000 in billings for property damage assessments related to Hurricane Ike.

Chief Judge Merrick Garland, of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit

What Would A Justice Garland Mean for Employers? Recent Cases Reveal a Mixed Bag

By Charles H. Wilson |

A review of Chief Judge Garland's recent opinions in labor and employment cases reveals a mixed bag, with the judge ruling against the employer in most cases.

Justin Bieber.

Houston Man Sues Justin Bieber Over Alleged Beer-Bong Incident

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Houston man alleges in a lawsuit he filed in Houston on May 3 that Justin Bieber smashed his cellphone after the singer saw him filming Bieber drinking from a "beer bong" in a Houston club.

Nominations Open for Texas Lawyer's Litigation Departments of the Year Award

We invite you to participate in the Texas Lawyer Litigation Departments of the Year contest.

Spencer Browne, partner, Reyes Brown Reilley, Dallas, left, and Frank Branson of The Law Offices of Frank L. Branson.

Dallas Jury Delivers $10.9M Verdict Against Choctaw Nation

By Miriam Rozen |

A Dallas jury began deliberating in late April, took a weekend break, and then returned on Monday, May 2 to deliver a $10.9 million verdict against the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma for its alleged role in a 2013 crash of a charter bus.

How Law Schools Game the Rankings

Study finds that law school rankings encourage cheating, lying.

Financier R. Allen Stanford gives a thumbs up as he arrives to the federal courthouse in shackles for a hearing in Houston, Texas, April 6, 2010.

Chadborne Pays $35M in Stanford Ponzi Suit; Proskauer Faces New Class Action

After striking a deal with Chadborne & Parke, investors are hoping for another chance to pursue claims that Proskauer Rose helped R. Allen Stanford conceal his Ponzi scheme from regulators.

University of Arizona Law School’s Use of GRE Scores Creates LSAT Trouble

The University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law’s recent decision to accept GRE scores in lieu of Law School Admission Test scores from applicants could cost the school its membership in the Law School Admission Council.

Marc Rosenthal Officially Disbarred

By Angela Morris |

Marc G. Rosenthal of Austin, who is serving 20 years in jail for bribing a district judge, is officially an ex-lawyer.

Gas Drilling Company Hit with $5M Class Action for Alleged Underpayment of Royalties

By Angela Neville |

Plaintiff Charles Hicks recently filed a putative class action in an Arkansas federal court claiming that Southwestern Energy Company and its subsidiaries are defrauding him and the putative class members through underpayment of royalties and seeking in excess of $5 million in damages.

Special Report: Energy Regulation, Bankruptcies and More

Energy Regulation; 5th Circuit Decision Affects Rights to Sue; Energy Bankruptcies

David Patton

From Pipeliner to Locke Lord Partner

By Angela Neville |

From his early start as an oil field worker in South Texas to his recent stint as chair of the State Bar of Texas' Oil, Gas & Energy Resources Law Section, Locke Lord partner David Patton has gained keen insights into the Texas energy sector.

Hacking a Way to Equality

By Kathleen J. Wu |

Hopefully, the spirit of an upcoming Women in Law hackathon will stay true to the hackathon ethos: experts and fresh thinkers coming together to generate bold, even crazy, ideas for new products, new services and, in the case of this event, new solutions to persistent problems.

Navigating the Legal Job Market

By Angela Morris |

"From my perspective, I think the market is good," said Andy Rose, who is graduating in May from Texas Tech University School of Law in Lubbock. "My close friends from law school, I think most of them have jobs."

Mikal Watts, partner at Watts Guerra poses at his office in San Antonio.

Mikal Watts Prepares for The Biggest Trial of His Career

By Miriam Rozen |

In February 2013, Mikal Watts flew to Miami Beach to attend an American Association for Justice convention. In two weeks' time, he expected to appear in the courtroom as the leader of a legal team opposing BP at a federal civil trial set to determine the energy company's liabilities for the 2010 Gulf Coast Oil Spill.

Nestor Ho, in-house general counsel, Silicon Laboratories Inc, Austin, Texas.

GCs Need to Be 'Solution Providers,' Not Just Lawyers

By Mary Alice Robbins |

Nestor Ho, vice president and general counsel for Silicon Labs, an Austin-based silicon, software and solutions provider, wants to do more than just fill the traditional role of a lawyer for his company.

Michael P. Maslanka

Take Caution in 'Liking' Social Media

By Michael P. Maslanka |

Teaching "Professional Responsibility" at UNT Dallas College of Law makes a person more sensitive to the marriage of technology, social media and legal ethics.

A Look at 5th Circuit Judges Who Nearly Made the U.S. Supreme Court

By John Council |

Traditionally U.S. presidents first look to the nation's 13 circuit courts in their search for potential high court justices—often mining the First, Second and D.C. Circuits for their choices. But Fifth Circuit judges often play the role of bridesmaid in the secretive game of Supreme Court nominations.

Marketability 101

By Felicia Hoang |

A prospective lawyer's marketability extends beyond intellect, confidence and a firm handshake.

Shoring Up Your Outsourcing

By David W. Black |

Major firms propose their services can save big bucks, but whether they can depends on hitting several factors straight on.

Is Your Head in the Cloud? How to Talk Techy to Your IT Staff

By Julie Machal-fulks |

One of the most difficult issues lawyers face when dealing with technology is that technology professionals often use a different kind of language. The inability to communicate effectively with the IT staff can cause misunderstandings that can be costly.

TT RACER: (2011: Calf of Man, Isle of Man, Irish Sea) (Bike: BMW F700 Parallel): Beautiful Day for Riding on the Isle of Man, home of the most legendary motorcycle road race in the World, the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy.

The Adventures of a Motorcycle-Loving Lawyer

By John Council |

Grant Wood's parents wouldn't let him have a motorcycle when he was a kid. So he obsessed over what they would let him own—a plastic model of a BMW R80G/S, a German dual sport bike made famous in the early 1980s when European riders used it to win the famous Paris Dakar Rally.

Law School Deans Say Job Market Improving for Law Grads

By Angela Morris |

Texas law school deans say that the job market for new law graduates continues to improve, although it's still highly competitive as out-of-state job candidates flood into Texas and as low oil and natural gas prices take their toll.

Supreme Court of Texas Narrows Interpretation 
of Property Damage

By David Walton and 
Brandan Montminy |

Eight years later, in U.S. Metals Inc. v. Liberty Mutual Group Inc., the court addressed a policyholder's effort to significantly expand CGL policies to cover construction and product defects.

Firm Finance: Texas Firms Powering Through Energy Slump

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

The total gross revenue at the 25 highest-grossing Texas firms reached $5.3 billion in 2015, up from 2014.

Nestor Ho, in-house general counsel, Silicon Laboratories Inc, Austin, Texas.

Q&A with General Counsel for Silicon Labs, Nestor Ho

Texas Lawyer spoke with Nestor Ho, vice president and general counsel of Silicon Labs in Austin, and asked him about best practices when dealing with outside counsel.

Defense Prevails In Forklift Rollover Accident; Plus Other Verdict News

A jury declined to award damages to a delivery man who rolled over in a forklift that fractured his leg and ruptured his spleen.

The St. Mary’s University School of Law moot court team of (left to right) third-year student Leah Wise, second-year law student William “Billy” Calve, third-year law student Stephanie De Sola.

St. Mary's Law Students Win National Moot Court Title

By Angela Morris |

Teams of St. Mary's University School of Law students recently took the top prizes at two national moot court competitions.

Richard Faulk, Partner, Alexander Dubose Jefferson & Townsend LLP

Alexander Dubose Firm Acquires Appellate Attorney in Houston Office; Plus Other 'On The Move' News

Richard O. Faulk, an appellate attorney, has joined Alexander Dubose Jefferson & Townsend as a partner in the firm's Houston office. Faulk, who focuses on complex toxic tort and environmental litigation, will split his time between Houston and Washington, D.C.

Heather Nevitt. Editor-in-Chief, Texas Lawyer

Editor's Note: Money Matters

By Heather D. Nevitt, Esq. |

It is that time of year again when we delve into the wonderful world of Firm Finance. As part of this annual project, we take a look inside the books of the top 25 firms in Texas and see how they fared in 2015.

The Numbers Are In

Texas Lawyer’s Annual Firm Finance Report Shows Big Law in Texas Knows How to Diversify

Fifth Circuit Makes It Easier to Recover Attorney Fees in Trademark Cases

By John Council |

In a decision that will make it easier for litigants to recover attorney fees when they are forced to defend baseless trademark infringement complaints, the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has loosened the standard for what constitutes a legally "exceptional" case under the Lanham Act in a recent decision.

Paul David Andrews, Corpus Christi and San Antonio solo, jail mug

Ex-Lawyer Faces 15 Years for Murder Plot

By Angela Morris |

Paul D. Andrews pleaded no contest to second-degree felony solicitation of murder, and the state will dismiss a felony barratry case against him. Codefendant Keith Gould saw his barratry charge dismissed today.

Christopher Kratovil, Office managing member in Dallas for Dykema Cox Smith .

Dykema Cox Smith Taps Dallas Litigator for Management Role

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Christopher Kratovil, a member of Dykema Cox Smith's litigation department, will become office managing member in Dallas on June 1.

Russ Emerson, a partner in Haynes and Boone

Federal Circuit Rejects Appeal That Would Have Wrecked the Eastern District's Patent Venue

By John Council |

Texas intellectual property attorneys and fans of the Eastern District of Texas can breathe a sigh of relief now that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently rejected a much-watched appeal that could have made it harder to file patent infringement cases in the popular jurisdiction.

Pssst: What Case Management Software Do You Use?

By Mary Alice Robbins |

Case management software 
can provide a corporate legal department a convenient and efficient way to manage case-related information ranging from docketing to outside counsel.

  Deborah Fishman, Kaye Scholer partner

New Rules Mean It's Payback Time in Patent Cases

Two years of data since the Supreme Court's 'Octane Fitness' ruling show fees are flowing but Intellectual Ventures and other big NPEs haven't been hit.

Kirkland & Ellis Represents Houston Natural Gas Company

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Kirkland & Ellis advised Indigo Minerals of Houston on a $375 million equity capital raise, an acquisition and related debt financing.

Sued for Attorney Fees, Client Counterclaims for Malpractice

By Angela Morris |

When an Austin law firm sued for $221,000 in attorney fees, a client struck back with a $1 million counterclaim.

Texas Capitol

Report: Legislature Should Repeal Attorney Rule Referendum Process

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Legislature should repeal the rules referendum process that allows lawyers to vote on changes to attorney disciplinary rules, said a report released today by the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission.

Law School Pass Rates from the February Texas Bar Exam

The Texas Board of Law Examiners made public the list of those who pass the Texas Bar Examination they took in February 2016.

Board Suspends Law License of Convicted State Rep

By Angela Morris |

State Rep. Ron Reynolds, who was convicted of barratry last fall, argued today that the Texas Board of Disciplinary Appeals shouldn't suspend his law license because a jury convicted him based on emotion rather than facts.

Jury Finds for Exxon in Indemnity Suit Against Fort Worth Energy Company

By Angela Neville |

A jury in a Harris County case recently found in favor of Exxon Mobil in a long-running dispute it has had with Fort Worth-based Trade Exploration Corp., and its principals, related to two earlier Louisiana lawsuits in which landowners sought damages from Exxon Mobil to remediate alleged environmental contamination.

Ken Paxton

Texas Big Law Scales Back Donations to Attorney General Ken Paxton

By Miriam Rozen |

Since his own legal troubles began last summer, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has not received the love –specifically, in the form of cash contributions to his officeholder's account--from big Texas law firms that his predecessor netted.

Texas Lawyers Advise Presidential Aspirants

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Texas firms are among the U.S. firms counseling candidates still seeking the Republican and Democratic nominations for U.S. president.

Deborah Williamson, managing director, Cox Smith Matthews, San Antonio

Resurgence in Energy Bankruptcies Prompts New Edition of Book

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Deborah Williamson, a member in Dykema Cox Smith in San Antonio, updated an American Bankruptcy Institute book on oil patch bankruptcies.

Keith S. Hampton

Austin Lawyers Oppose Courthouse Security Proposal

By Angela Morris |

Criminal-defense lawyers are up in arms over a plan to change the security screening procedures in Travis County's criminal justice center. They say the plan will cause long delays, make them late to court and impact their businesses.

Jamil N. Alibhai is a partner at Munck Wilson Mandala in Dallas

Dallas Lawyer Gets Exceptional Win for Patent Plaintiff But No Attorney Fees

By John Council |

It was certainly exceptional last spring when an Eastern District of Texas jury gave Jamil Alibhai's plaintiff technology client a whopping $88 million in damages for patent infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets.

Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law.

Charles Koch Foundation Gives SMU $3.5M to Establish Criminal Justice Center

A $3.5 million donation from the Charles Koch Foundation will help fund a new criminal justice reform program at Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law.

Nominations Open for Texas Lawyer's Women in Energy Awards

Our 2016 Women in Energy awards will profile outstanding female attorneys in the Lone Star State who practice in the ever-changing area of energy law.

Senior U.S. District Judge David Ezra

Federal Judge Issues Rule 11 Sanctions Against Plaintiffs and Former Attorney

By Miriam Rozen |

U.S. Senior District Judge David Ezra in Austin igranted a defendants' request that plaintiffs pay a total of $70,304 in attorney fees.

Gardere Wynne Sewell Adds Environmental Partner; Plus Other 'On The Move' News

By Mary Alice Robins |

Laura Whiting has joined Gardere Wynne Sewell as an environmental partner in the firm's Dallas office. She will assist clients with all aspects of compliance and permitting for heavily regulated industry and real estate development.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Don R. Willett

Who Is Speaking at Texas Law School Graduations? Who is Speaking at Two?

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett will deliver remarks at graduations at two law schools, but other speakers at Texas law schools range from trial lawyers to the head of a philanthropic organization.

Norton Rose Fulbright Forms Latin America Team

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

William "Williie" Wood, a partner in Houston, chairs a new Latin America leadership team at Norton Rose Fulbright.

Mark Benavides, solo attorney, San Antonio, TX.

Lawyer Indicted for Compelling Prostitution, Sexual Assault

By Angela Morris |

San Antonio criminal-defense lawyer Mark Benavides was indicted today for 35 second-degree felony counts of sexual assault and compelling prostitution. He allegedly forced sex with three clients as his attorney fee.

Mary Barkley, Cantey Hanger LLP, Fort Worth TX.

Appellate Court Rules Texas Official Can't Be Removed for Anti-Tax Stance

By John Council |

Good news for the Tea Party. A Texas appellate has ruled that just because an anti-tax politician tries to eliminate his own agency by denying it funding, he can't be removed from office by the government for incompetency.

5th Circuit Rejects Student's Claim After Southern Methodist University Expelled Him Over Safety Concerns

By John Council |

The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals recently blocked a lawsuit filed by a former Southern Methodist University student who sued the school claiming he wasn't treated fairly after officials expelled him for alleged threatening behavior and circulated warning photos of him.

Indictment in Johnny Manziel Case Released

By Miriam Rozen |

Dallas grand jury issued indictment, based on allegations of misdemeanor assault by former Aggie and one-time top pro NFL prospect Johnny Manziel.

In honor of the presidential citation award winners. UT Austin on April 22nd illuminated the UT Tower in burnt orange, as it did in this photo from 2010.

3 Prominent Lawyers Win University of Texas Austin Awards

By Angela Morris |

Former Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson, Houston attorney Janiece Longoria and Austin lawyer Kirk Watson—also a state senator—received 2016 UT Austin presidential citations.

Blind Law Students Sue BarBri Over Accessibility

By Angela Morris |

Three blind law graduates have filed a class action against BarBri, the largest bar exam preparation course in the nation, claiming that blind people can't access some of its online materials.

District Attorney Dodges Grievance Over Advice to Strike Black Jurors

By Angela Morris |

Wharton County DA Ross Kurtz's alleged comments about striking blacks from juries concerned one of his prosecutors and brought tough questions from a judge. But the State Bar dismissed a grievance over it.

U.S. Department of Justice building in Washington, D.C.

ValueActs' Purchase of $2.5B of Halliburton and Baker Hughes Stock Triggers Antitrust Suit

By Angela Neville |

The U.S. Department of Justice recently filed a lawsuit against ValueAct Capital and its affiliates for allegedly violating U.S. antitrust laws in their recent purchase of approximately $2.5 billion of stock owned by Houston-based Halliburton and Baker Hughes.

Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law.

2 Dallas-Fort Worth Law Schools Suspend Night Programs

By Angela Morris |

Two of the three law schools in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex have suspended their evening programs for law students, which might drive enrollment to the third school.

Attorney Uses the Fifth Circuit to Get U.S. Documents for Mexican Lawsuit

By John Council |

After chasing an evasive litigation investment company all over the United States with a federal subpoena, Meredith Parenti's corporate defendant client has so far been unsuccessful in compelling documents that may be crucial to a lawsuit it faces in Mexico.

Jim Darnell

Johnny Football Frenzy at Dallas District Attorney

By Miriam Rozen |

If you call the press office for the Dallas County District Attorney today, the people that answer the phones probably won't even wait for you to make a request before guessing why you are calling.

In the Big Verdicts Arena, Don't Mess with Texas

Everything really was bigger in Texas last year. The Lone Star State had 18 of the top 100 verdicts in 2015.

The AM Law 100 logo

The 2016 Am Law 100: Growth Slows for Big Law

The American Lawyer's annual report on the nation's 100 top-grossing law firms. Full financial results, in-depth analysis, firm profiles, and more.

5 Big Texas Firms on Am Law 100 List

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Five large Texas firms were among the 100 highest-grossing firms in 2015, as reported in the Am Law 100 list.

Austin shareholder David Mattka with Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr. Participating in the “sticky fly fundraiser” for the Texas Access to Justice Foundation.

Lawyers Duct Tape Managing Partners to the Wall--for Charity

By Angela Morris |

But why take the easy road to donate money to access to justice, when it's more fun to duct tape a managing partner to the wall while also helping provide for low-income Texans' legal needs?

Thomas Moore of Mayer Brown.

A Perspective on Impact of Failure to Freeze Oil Production

By Angela Neville |

Thomas Moore, Houston-based energy partner at Mayer Brown LLP, discusses the impact of the global oil exporters' failure to agree on an oil production freeze at the recent meeting in Doha, Qatar.

A Chipotle Mexican Grill steak burrito is arranged for a photograph at the Sunset and Vine store in Hollywood, California, U.S., on Tuesday, July 16, 2013.

Chipotle GMO Class Action, in Miami Court, Survives Dismissal Motion

The class action lawsuit against Chipotle Mexican Grill over genetically modified food survived a motion to dismiss.

New Chief Administrative Law Judge Named for State Office of Administrative Hearings

By Mary Alice Robbins |

A woman who says she finds administrative law "pretty fascinating" will take over as head of the State Office of Administrative Hearings on May 1.

Andrews Kurth Settles Malpractice Suit

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Under confidential terms, Houston-based Andrews Kurth settled a malpractice lawsuit filed by a former client that resulted in a nearly $200 million verdict against the firm.

Federal Court Orders Sanctions Against Defense Counsel

By Miriam Rozen |

In an insurance industry related dispute, a Dallas federal court ordered sanctions against defendants and their counsel, Sandra Liser, an attorney in the Fort Worth office of Naman Howell Smith & Lee. The court ordered the sanctions, but, in the same ruling, also denied other motions for sanctions filed by the plaintiff.

White Star To Acquire $200M in Shale Assets From Devon Energy

By Angela Neville |

White Star Petroleum is using the firm of Porter Hedges for its pending acquisition of Mississippi Lime and Woodford Shale assets for $200 million from Devon Energy Corp., which is being represented in the deal by two Houston Vinson & Elkins partners.

Rendering of the new San Antonio courthouse, U.S. Courthouse Western District of Texas

Home Stretch for New San Antonio Federal Courthouse

By Angela Morris |

U.S. District Judge Xavier Rodriguez "is seeing the light at the end of the tunnel," illuminating the end of a 19-year project to build a new federal courthouse in San Antonio.

European Union May Object to $34.6B Halliburton-Baker Hughes Merger as Anticompetitive

By Angela Neville |

Halliburton Co.'s proposal to purchase oil-services rival Baker Hughes Inc. may soon be hit with new opposition from European Union (EU) regulators who are expressing concerns about how the merger of the two Houston-based oil services giants could hurt competition throughout the EU.

Stratton Horres

Wilson Elser Hires Five Litigators From Trial Firm

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A group of five litigation laterals join Wilson Elser's Dallas office, coming from Addison-based trial firm Schell Cooley.

Widow of Fan Killed in Fall at Turner Field Sues Atlanta Braves Over Railing Height

The family of a man killed after falling from the upper deck of Turner Field last year has sued the Atlanta Braves, parent company Liberty Media Corp. and Major League Baseball Enterprises, alleging the defendants knew the guard rail height was—and still is—dangerously low.

Ken Paxton

Attorney General's Office: 'Cronyism' Isn't Employment Discrimination

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Office of the Attorney General alleges that a court should dismiss a discrimination lawsuit by a former staffer who claimed she was terminated because Ken Paxton wanted to replace her with his friend.

Sidley, Willkie Work on Houston Energy Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Sidley Austin represents private equity company Stonepeak Infrrastructure Partners in an equity commitment of up to $500 million in Houston's Sage Midstream Ventures, which turned to Willkie Farr & Gallagher.

13 Must-Ask Questions Before Enlisting An Expert Witness

By Quentin Brogdon |

In dealing with experts, an ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure.

Moving In and Moving Up at Winstead

By Mary Alice Robbins |

Winstead has hired a number of attorneys in recent months and promoted several others.

Counties Ready to Rumble for Courthouse Gun Bans

By Angela Morris |

Three Texas counties think the Texas Office of the Attorney General got the law wrong on the legality of courthouse handgun bans, and they might file lawsuits to ask judges to decide if they can keep guns out.

Former Galveston Attorney Wins Appeal on Attorney Fees

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Houston appeals court affirmed a judgment awarding former Galveston attorney Anthony Griffin over $100,000 in a suit he filed to collect fees from a former client.

Web-Educating Lawyers about Wrongful Prosecutions

By Miriam Rozen |

The Texas Young Lawyers Association this month went live with a new, interactive website dedicated to educating lawyers about how to halt wrongful prosecutions. It speaks to audiences of both defense lawyers and prosecutors.

Vuk Vujasinovic, VB Attorneys, Houston.

$17.72 Million Verdict in Wrongful Death Case

By Miriam Rozen |

The family of a worker who died during the construction a new Baylor University football stadium won a $17.72 million wrongful death verdict against Austin Bridge & Road, a company engaged in the building project.

Dallas Lawyer Convinces Fifth Circuit to Vacate Doctor's Sentence

By John Council |

The federal government came down hard on Dr. Tariq Mahmood two years ago, sending him to prison for eleven years for Medicare fraud after his chain of East Texas hospitals allegedly overbilled taxpayers to the tune of $599,128.02.

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the day of arguments in the immigration case United States v. Texas.  April 18, 2016.

Kennedy Calls Obama Immigration Action 'Upside Down' As Justices Appear Divided

As cheers and chants from immigration supporters and opponents filled the air outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday, the justices struggled over the legality of Obama administration's plan to delay temporarily the deportation of nearly 4 million illegal immigrants. At the end of the 90-minute argument, the eight justices appeared divided on the threshold question of whether Texas had standing to challenge the immigration plan in federal court and divided over the fundamental issue of whether the plan violates federal law and the Constitution.

Former District Judge Alleges Texas Drone Law Unconstitutional

By Angela Morris |

A former district judge from Laredo has sued the state and Gov. Greg Abbott, alleging that part of the Texas drone law is unconstitutional because it violates his privacy and treats Mexican-Americans differently than other Texans.

Disputed $45.8M Arbitration Award Includes $3.04M in Attorney Fees

By Miriam Rozen |

Confirmation of the award is pending in state court in Dallas. But the consortium has objected to award, arguing it should be vacated because that the three-member arbitration panel exceeded its authority. The consortium has also objected to the attorney fees, arguing that no statutory basis exists in Texas law upon which the digital security company, Amsterdam-based Gemalto, could obtain attorney fees. Nor did the two sides include in their agreement to arbitrate any preset conditions for fees, the consortium argued.

Whoops! Male Judicial Candidate Attempts to Join Female Class Action

By John Council |

While 300 women who are current and former lawyers for Farmers Insurance Group will be splitting $4 million as a part of a settlement of a federal pay bias class action lawsuit, one attorney who won't likely get any that money is Leslie "Les" Sachanowicz, a San Antonio prosecutor who's running for judge.

Ken Paxton

Texas Attorney General Seizes Political Moment of U.S. Supreme Court Immigration Hearing

By Miriam Rozen |

When the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments for Texas and 25 other states opposition to the Obama administration proposed immigration reforms, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sat in the audience, along with his counterparts from Nebraska, Oklahoma and Indiana.

Federal Judge Consolidates 11 Antitrust Cases against Chesapeake Energy

By Angela Neville |

Chesapeake Energy Corp. and several other defendants are in the middle of a fierce fight in an Oklahoma federal court with a large number of plaintiffs who are alleging the defendants engaged in business actions that stifled competition in negotiating oil and gas leases and violated U.S. antitrust laws.

Proposal Calls On Lawyer Email Addresses for E-Service

By Angela Morris |

This fall, lawyers might have to update their State Bar of Texas profiles to add an email address that the state can use for e-filing and electronic service.

Nominations Open for Texas Lawyer's Legal Departments of the Year Award

Texas Lawyer's Legal Departments of the Year award recognizes the Lone Star State's top in-house departments in six distinct categories: 1. General; 2. Outside Counsel Management; 3. Technology; 4. Diversity and Quality of Life; 5. Pro Bono and Community Service; and 6. Corporate Compliance. To qualify, the department must be led by a GC from Texas.

Texas Supreme Court Issues Two Attorney Fee Rulings

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Supreme Court today issued two rulings that favored parties seeking attorney fees in a First Amendment case and a breach-of-contract case.

Judge Recuses Himself in Case to Block $34.6B Halliburton-Baker Hughes Merger

By Angela Neville |

U.S. District Judge Richard G. Andrews, who was presiding over the case in which the U.S. Department of Justice is seeking to block Halliburton Co.'s proposed $34.6 billion merger with Baker Hughes Inc., recently recused himself on the grounds that he has a "financial interest in Schlumberger."

L to R: Justice Don Willet and Justice Jeff Brown

Two Conservative High Court Judges Slam Texas' First Same-Sex Marriage

By John Council |

While the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage 10 months ago, two members of the Texas Supreme Court recently took shots at the trial judge and the lawyer who allowed the first lesbian couple to get married in the state months before the landmark decision was issued.

Steve Mostyn of Houston’s Mostyn Law Firm

Federal Judge Orders Steve Mostyn to Show Cause Hearing, Possible Rule 11 Sanctions

By Miriam Rozen |

A McAllen federal judge granted a summary judgment motion filed by an insurance defendant and ordered plaintiffs counsel Steve Mostyn and his Houston firm to show why the court should not impose Rule 11 sanctions against them. The show cause hearing is scheduled for May 6.

Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law.

Southern Methodist University Dedman Hires Four Law Professors

By Angela Morris |

Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law boosted its offerings in several hot areas of law with the addition of four new professors scheduled to begin teaching in the fall.

Exxon Seeks to Block Subpoena Over Climate-Change Documents

Exxon Mobil Corp. is squaring off against government investigators who believe the energy giant covered up knowledge of how fossil fuels contribute to climate change.

EIV Uses Sidley, Porter Hedges for Sale of Energy Facilities

By Angela Neville |

EIV Capital, an energy industry-focused firm, and EIV MAS Georgia LFG, recently turned to the firms of Sidley Austin in Houston and Porter Hedges in Houston for assistance with their sale of four long-term contracted landfill gas-to-energy facilities located near Atlanta.

Woman Stabbed Over 40 Times Wins $40 Million Verdict

By John Council |

A woman who was stabbed over 40 times, tortured and sexually assaulted recently won a $40.6 million verdict from a Dallas County civil jury after she sued her ex-boyfriend for assault.

Experienced Lawyer to Defend Teenager in University of Texas Austin Murder

By Angela Morris |

An Austin criminal-defense solo practitioner who has represented high-profile defendants in the most serious criminal cases was appointed to defend the homeless charged with murdering an 18-year-old UT Austin student.

Class Action Filed Against BP Retirement Plan

By Miriam Rozen |

One former and one current BP employee filed a proposed class-action lawsuit against the British oil giant company's retirement plan. Some 450 BP employees are part of the proposed class.

Former Judge/Prison Guard Goes to Prison for Theft

By John Council |

A former Texas judge and prison guard will be heading to the big house himself as an inmate after he was sentenced recently for stealing $133,333 in traffic ticket money from the county that had employed him.

Lawyers Divided Over McLennan County Gun Fight

By Angela Morris |

Lawyers in Waco are divided over whether McLennan County should battle with the Texas office of the attorney general over keeping a prohibition on handguns in the local courthouse.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX)

Judge Dismisses Challenge to Ted Cruz's Eligibility to Run for President

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

U.S. District Judge Gray Miller of the Southern District of Texas on April 13 dismissed with prejudice a lawsuit challenging Texas Sen. Ted Cruz's eligibility to run for president.

Texas Lawyer's Firm Financial Coverage

Reports for Texas Lawyer's annual firm finance coverage are coming in. Check back often to this page for the latest insights on firm revenue, net income and other metrics. Included below Texas Lawyer's articles is a link to The American Lawyer's growing list of financial reports.

Exxon, Shell Win Superfund Case in Texas Third Court of Appeals

By Angela Neville |

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality recently lost its appeal before the Texas Third Court of Appeals against Exxon Mobil Corporation, Exxon Mobil Oil Corporation, Shell Oil Company and Pennzoil-Quaker State Company.

Antitrust Claim Against Uber Illuminates Perilous Intersection

By Randy Gordon |

Uber recently found itself driving a very narrow road, flanked on the one side by the Scylla of labor-and-employment claims and on the other by the Charybdis of antitrust liability. And the road is narrow because it's the defense to the first type of claim that sets the predicate for the second. To understand why this is, some background to Uber's nature and organization will be helpful.

Holland N. O'Neil

Gardere Wynne Sewell's Profits Boom During Energy Market Bust

By John Council |

While diving oil prices took a bite of many Texas law firms energy practice wallets, that hardly seemed to matter to Dallas' Gardere Wynne Sewell, which brought in $149 million in gross revenue during their recently completed fiscal year—an increase 4.2 percent over the $143 million from the previous year.

Prepare for Significant Changes in Employment Law

By Jackie Ford |

The year 2016 will bring a new president of the United States. As human resources departments and employment lawyers are realizing, this year will also see changes to fundamental regulations governing the workplace.

Jason A. Wietjes

Eastern District Patent Filings Plummet

By John Council |

Even as plaintiffs were shattering an all-time record by filing 2,591 new cases in the Eastern District of Texas last year, experts predicted the nation's most popular patent docket could not get any bigger. It turns out they were right.

Former A&M Professor Alleges Spoliation in Sex-Discrimination Suit Against University

By Miriam Rozen |

In a sex discrimination and retaliation lawsuit, a former Texas A&M University-Commerce faculty member asked a Dallas federal court to set aside a magistrate's ruling denying her motion for sanctions against the school.

Robert Cohan, a partner with the Dallas office of the firm Jackson Walker LLP

DOJ: Proposed $34 Billion Halliburton-Baker Hughes Merger Hurts Competition

By Angela Neville |

Seeking to block the pending $34.6 billion merger of oil giants Halliburton Co. and Baker Hughes Inc., the U.S. Department of Justice recently filed a civil antitrust lawsuit against both companies.

B. Todd Patterson Founding partner, Patterson & Sheridan of Houston

Houston Intellectual Property Firm Opens Office in Japan

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Patterson & Sheridan of Houston opens first international office because of clients in Asia.

Frank Stevenson, partner, Locke Lord in Dallas and State Bar of Texas president-elect candidate in 2015

Incoming Bar President Plans Legal Incubator

By Angela Morris |

"There is this enormous unmet need for justice and there is this enormous underutilized capacity for the provision of legal services," said State Bar president-elect Frank Stevenson. "It's matching justice with opportunity."

Ken Paxton

SEC Files Civil Securities Fraud Lawsuit Against Ken Paxton

By Angela Morris |

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton faces a new lawsuit that alleges he violated federal securities laws by recruiting investors for a technology company without saying he was getting paid to promote the company's stock.

New Lawyers for Defendants After $20M Verdict, April Fools' Tweet

By Miriam Rozen |

The owners of Videogames YouTube Channel, who are defendants in a lawsuit that led to a more than $20 million jury verdict against them, hired new lawyers from Dallas' Friedman & Feiger. Robert Wilson of Dallas, who previously represented them, has withdrawn as their counsel.

Exxon Reaches $10M Oil Spill Settlement With New York

By Angela Neville |

Texas-based oil giant Exxon Mobil has agreed to foot the hefty $10.75 million bill for the oil spill cleanup and petroleum contamination removal costs at eight locations across the state of New York.

Lawyer Imprisoned for Health Care Fraud Surrenders Law License

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Supreme Court on April 5 accepted the disciplinary resignations of an attorney who was convicted of health care fraud in 2013 and another who had outstanding grievances from six clients.

David Dawson

At Winstead, Gross Revenue, Net Income Improve in 2015

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Gross revenue for Dallas-based Winstead improves by 3.9 percent in 2015 and sets a record for firm.

Patent Battle Involves Motion for Contempt, Enhanced Fees

By Miriam Rozen |

In a patent dispute about a mobile payment technology, a Tyler federal magistrate has set an April 22 deadline for a corporate defendant to respond to motions for contempt and one seeking enhanced attorney fees.

'Understandable Mistake' Saves Plaintiffs Case at Fifth Circuit

By John Council |

Because their child couldn't speak for himself, Breggett and Terrence Rideau filed a federal lawsuit on his behalf, only to learn they didn't have standing to bring the case after they'd won a $1 million verdict from a jury. But the parents will get a chance at recovering some of that money after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled that the plaintiffs confusion over a complicated standing issue was an "understandable mistake."

Karl Dial, partner, Greenberg Traurig, Dallas

Three Litigators Join Greenberg Traurig in Dallas

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Three trial lawyers leave DLA Piper's Dallas office to move to Greenberg Traurig.

Jarad Kent

Dallas Trial Firm Opens Tyler Office

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Chamblee, Ryan, Kershaw & Anderson, which has work in east Texas, opened an office in Tyler on April 4.

Daniel LeBey

Vinson & Elkins Opens Office in Virginia

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Vinson & Elkins opens an office in Richmond, Virginia, after hiring a five-partner group of REIT lawyers.

Michael Santifer casts his vote via an electronic voting machine November 4, 2008 in Fort Worth, Texas.

Supreme Court Rejects Conservatives' Electoral-District Method

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday upheld the long-standing practice of using total population—rather than eligible-voter population—in drawing legislative districts, frowning on an approach that could have recast thousands of electoral maps. The court did not, however, rule out the possibility that states could use the voting-population method in the future.

Stampeding to Texas

Small Business Issues in Divorce: A Cautionary Tale

By Michelle May O'Neil and Jere Hight |

Studies show that over fifty percent of marriages in urban areas end in divorce in this country. So, the effect of property transfers between spouses and family members and the potential effect on marital property in the event of divorce cannot be ignored.

That's An Order, Y'all!

By John G. Browning |

We do things a little differently in the Lone Star State, and our judges are no exception. Sure, any jurist can grant or deny relief or direct parties how a case is going to be conducted, but Texas judges—particularly our federal judiciary—do it with a no-nonsense style, a bit of Texas swagger, and yes, even a healthy dose of humor.

As Austin's Legal Market Explodes, Firms Rush In

By Angela Morris |

Austin's economy is booming—spurring business growth, creating impressive numbers of jobs and flooding the city with new residents. Law firms are reacting by opening new offices or expanding existing operations.

Overtime Pay Front and Center

By Alan Bush |

Some say that 2016 is the "Year of 
the FLSA"—the Fair Labor Standards Act. That sounds about right. Overtime pay will be front and center on corporate counsel's list of HR priorities.

Justice Nathan Hecht

Judges Dish Out Advice for Law Clerk Hopefuls

Judicial clerkships can be like a rocket that takes a young attorney to the moon of his legal career. Texas Lawyer asked judges across Texas for their advice for law students who are interested in clerkships.

Kate Cassidy - the associate counsel for the Texas Rangers Baseball Club - at the clubs ballpark in Arlington TX.

Lone Texas Ranger: How a Young Fan Grew Up to Become the Team's Sole Lawyer

By Mary Alice Robbins |

Kate Cassidy's office in Arlington overlooks home plate at Globe Life Park, home of the Texas Rangers, and she rubs shoulders with the likes of Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez, a famed professional baseball catcher, and Michael Young, an equally famous infielder, who now both work in the Rangers' front office.

The New Regulation 
of Political Speech

By Joseph Nixon |

If you believe the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution gives you the right to free speech, think again. In Texas, of all places, political speech comes with a cost: registration and/or paying a fee to the state for the privilege of speaking.

Heather Nevitt. Editor-in-Chief, Texas Lawyer

Editor's Note: A New Era For Texas Lawyer

By Heather D. Nevitt, Esq. |

On April 3, 1985, Texas Lawyer newspaper first hit the market in the Lone Star State, offering news and insights to the Texas legal community. And now, on our 31st anniversary, we are excited to launch the inaugural issue of our monthly magazine.

Plaintiff Loses Suit
 Over Minor Crash; Plus Other Verdict News

Neither driver was to blame for a collision on a parkway in Grand Prairie, a jury found on Feb. 8. Gloria Valadez was driving a minivan with Ufoma Oweh driving a sedan in the lane to her right. Valadez's right front quarter panel hit Oweh's left side.

Michael P. Maslanka, Assistant Professor of Law, UNT Dallas College of Law.

Tao Trial Lessons: Less is Often More

By Michael P. Masklanka |

The Tao is an ancient text. It brims with wisdom. Here are some insights applied to litigation and trial.

Breaking Down the Big Changes in IP Litigation

By Michael A. Jacobs and Richard S.J. Hung |

The patent landscape arguably has never undergone so much change so quickly as in the last few years. Some of the intense judicial scrutiny of patents is reminiscent of a bygone era.

Is Clerking the Key to Landing the Right Job?

By Angela Morris |

Many in the legal community sing the praises of judicial clerkships. But data shows that a Texas lawyer's success in landing a high-value clerkship might depend upon the law school he or she attended.

Pipeline in Mexico

Energy Boost: Texas Lawyers Turn to Mexican Projects

By Susan Postlewaite |

Falling oil prices have rattled the economy, but not Texas energy lawyers. They still have their sights set on the billions of dollars in projects and opportunities for energy companies in Mexico, which is privatizing its dilapidated energy sector and luring foreign investors—many of which want an attorney in Texas.

Edward Blum

Doggedly Colorblind: Ed Blum Returns Again and Again to SCOTUS

By Miriam Rozen |

Ed Blum has kept race as his focus as the director the Project on Fair Representation, an Austin-based nonprofit, which has sponsored plaintiffs suing Texas officials based on allegations of their discriminatory use of race. Blum wants to make the government and other institutions colorblind—race neutral; he has sponsored litigation for the past 20 years to make that happen.

Trademark Quality Control

By Catherine J. Holland |

Trademark licensors are scram-bling to keep up with the evolving use of social media as a tool for business advertising. As technology changes, so must the provisions in a trademark license.

Dennise Garcia is the judge of the 303rd District Court in Texas.

Wisdom from Dennise Garcia, Dallas' Longest-Serving Family Court Judge

By John Council |

The world was a different place when Dennise Garcia was elected to a family law bench in 2004. That year, Democrats were practically nonexistent on the Dallas County judiciary, lawyers still filed lawsuits using paper and same-sex couples were forbidden by law from marrying in the State of Texas. Twelve years later, Garcia is now one of Dallas's most senior trial judges. Democrats like her now hold every district and county bench in the county.

Establishing an IP Position for Pharmaceutical and Biotech Companies

By Frederick G. Vogt and Thomas H. Walls |

Intellectual property and preclinical/clinical data are the lifeblood of the pharmaceutical and biotech industry. A business' fate can be tied to the strength of its intellectual property positions.

Be Mindful of These Top 5 Dangers in Family Law

By Brad LaMorgese |

Waiver issues are always lurking, though not always readily apparent. Here are some of the most common for which an attorney needs to be aware.

Oil Plunge Puts Employment Lawyers to Work

By Mary Alice Robbins |

With the price of oil plunging from more than $100 a barrel to less than $30, energy companies are struggling with a myriad of labor and employment challenges, including some that have forced them into the courts.

Kate Cassidy - the associate counsel for the Texas Rangers Baseball Club - at the clubs ballpark in Arlington TX.

Q&A with Texas Rangers' Associate Counsel

Texas Lawyer spoke with Kate Cassidy, associate counsel for Texas Rangers Baseball in Arlington, and asked her about best practices when dealing with outside counsel.

Avoid Pitfalls When Changing Custody Established in a Previous Court Order

By Jonathan J. Bates |

On a final basis, a court with continuing, exclusive jurisdiction may modify an existing order regarding conservatorship, support, or possession of and access to a child if modification would be in the best interest of the child and at least one other required prong is satisfied.

'Alice' in Patentland: Turning Point for Patent Litigation

By John Council |

Two years ago, Rob Hunter was served with the kind of intellectual property lawsuit that terrifies seasoned corporate general counsel. His company, Altec Industries, was sued for patent infringement in the Eastern District of Texas, dropping them straight into a plaintiff's fantasy world of litigation where jury awards are huge and judges rarely dismiss claims on summary judgment.

 Douglas Yeager

Houston Locke Lord Partner Named Chairman of Firm's Banking and Real Estate Department; Plus Other 'On The Move' News

Douglas A. Yeager, a Houston partner in Locke Lord, has been named chairman of the firm's Finance, Banking and Real Estate Department.

Kent Schaffer and the kids of the Shwe Gu Monastic Orphanage in Bagan, Myanmar, May 2015.

Houston Lawyer Kent Schaffer's Out of the Office, Exploring the World

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Houston criminal defense lawyer Kent Schaffer travels around the world taking photographs as a hobby.

Wayne Risoli, managing shareholder of Chamberlain Hrdlicka. December 16, 2014. Courtesy photo.

Chamberlain Hrdlicka Posts Second-Best Ever Financials

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Gross revenue at the Houston-based firm declined by 1.3 percent in 2015 compared with 2014, and net income dropped by 11.8 percent when comparing finances with a record-setting 2014.

Parental Rights Litigants Get Appointed Lawyers Before SCOTX

By Angela Morris |

Indigent litigants in parental rights termination cases have the right to an appointed lawyer all the way up to the Texas Supreme Court's level, the high court ruled Friday.

San Antonio Bar Launches Health Law Section

By Angela Morris |

The San Antonio Bar Association is launching a health law section to build a community of attorneys and address current issues in health law. It will provide continuing legal education and networking opportunities.

Texas Supreme Court building

SCOTX Declines to Advance New-Trial Review Case Law

By Angela Morris |

The next episode is out in a series of Texas Supreme Court cases that enabled appellate review of orders granting new trials. But the latest ruling might disappoint attorneys looking for more guidance.

After $20M Verdict, April Fools' Day Tweet Almost Leads to Contempt

By Miriam Rozen |

After a Dallas jury delivered a more than $20 million verdict against two owners of Videogames YouTube Channel, a U.S. magistrate ordered one of the owners, Bryan Martin, to show why he should not be charged with contempt of court and serve jail time after a tweet.

Corey Frank Wehmeyer, a partner with the San Antonio firm Santoyo Moore Wehmeyer

Enercorp Wins $9.2M Verdict in Dispute Over Oil and Gas Leases

By Angela Neville |

A long contentious lawsuit involving Bakken shale oil and gas leases recently lead to a Texas federal jury awarding a total of $9,291,570 to U.S. Enercorp Ltd., which contended that it allegedly had sustained tortious interference with a prospective contract and an existing contract by defendants SDC Montana Bakken Exploration, Val Verde Investments and Ringo Shapiro.

Liberty Oilfield Services To Buy Assets of Canadian Fracking Equipment Company

By Angela Neville |

Sanjel Corporation, which is based in Alberta, Canada, recently announced that it has signed an agreement for the sale of its U.S. fracturing, coiled tubing and cementing assets to Liberty Oilfield Services for an undisclosed amount.

Oil Bust Decreasing Some Law Practices, Increasing Others

By Angela Morris |

A recent survey of Texas firms indicates that some see a decrease in domestic energy legal work and an increase in bankruptcy representations. Oil and gas attorneys say that the hardest hit firms likely focused on title opinion work.

National Firms Stampede Into Houston Despite Drop in Oil Prices

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Out-of-state firms continue to move into Houston, the nation's energy capital, despite the low oil and gas prices.

Core Labs Wins $1 Million Verdict in IP Fight Over Drilling Technology

By Angela Neville |

In an intellectual property dispute in federal court in Oklahoma, a jury recently awarded Houston-based Core Laboratories LP a $1 million verdict after determining that its oil well services competitor, Spectrum Tracer Services, and two former Core employees, were liable for unfair competition by misappropriation.

Football Tickets Lure Lawyers to do Income Survey

By Angela Morris |

A couple of lucky lawyers will win Houston Texans or Dallas Cowboys tickets, but there's a hitch: They must anonymously disclose their income, hourly rates and more to the State Bar of Texas.

Convicted Former Lawyer Sued for Real Estate Fraud

By Angela Morris |

Anirudh "Andy" Sarwal, a former lawyer who was convicted in 2013 of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and who recently resigned his law license in a disciplinary case, was sued for fraud in an Austin real estate transaction.

Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan Hecht

Texas Supreme Court Defends Indigent Litigants in Strong-Worded Opinion

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Supreme Court has slapped down Tarrant County District Clerk Thomas Wilder's policy of attempting to collect court costs from indigent divorce litigants.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman

Golf Channel Ruling Pings Stanford Receiver

By John Council |

Texas Supreme Court ruled that TUFTA allows creditors the ability to void fraudulent transfers made by a debtor and force them back into the debtor's estate. However, a transfer cannot be voided under TUFTA if a transferee proves two things: that it accepted the transfer in good faith, and that the transferee gave the debtor something of "reasonable equivalent value" in return for their money.

Ted Cruz.

Supreme Court Upholds Cruz’s Pa. Ballot Eligibility

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, will be on the April 26 primary ballot in Pennsylvania now that the state’s Supreme Court has affirmed a ruling deeming Cruz a “natural born citizen.”

Anxious About Law Student Loans? Top Tips to Help You Manage Payments

By Angela Morris |

'Congratulations, graduate! Now get ready to pay.' Some [law students] panic at that. 'Oh my, I don't have a job yet; how will I ever repay this? Uncle Sam is going to come at me with teeth six inches long.'"

Ex-Client Alleges Firms, Lawyers Took 127 Percent of Cash in Settlement as Fee

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Brazoria County woman seeks more than $1 million from two Houston firms and three lawyers in a suit filed over handling of estate matters.

Duston K. McFaul, a partner in the Houston office of Sidley Austin

New Gulf, Energy & Exploration Partners Reach Truce Over Joint Drilling Agreements

By Angela Neville |

Despite a litigious history between them, New Gulf Resources and Energy & Exploration Partners LLC recently worked out a settlement agreement pertaining to their joint operating agreements related to oil exploration and production operations in East Texas and then filed the agreement in their respective Chapter 11 bankruptcies seeking court approval.

Thad Spalding

Dallas Lawyer Lands in the 5th Circuit to Save Aircraft Claim

By John Council |

When Thad Spalding's client paid $110,000 for a used helicopter only to later discover that it wasn't airworthy, the seller beat them to the courthouse and won a summary judgment ruling that sealed the deal. So Spalding took the case to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and recently won a ruling that may make his client whole.

Firm Sues Client for $221K Attorney Fee

By Angela Morris |

An Austin law firm has sued a client for breach of contract, alleging that he failed to pay nearly $221,400 in attorney fees.

Report Recommends More Prosecutor Oversight

By Angela Morris |

Even when prosecutors engage in intentional misconduct to win a conviction, there are nearly no government systems to hold them accountable, said a report by the New-York based Innocence Project.

Kelly Shackelford, president and CEO of the Liberty Institute

Nonprofit Lawyers See 'Striking Similarities' to Their Case in Movie

By Miriam Rozen |

The legal team at the nonprofit Plano-based First Liberty Institute expresses enthusiasm for the movie "God's Not Dead 2," opening nationwide on April 1.

Pillsbury, Hogan Lovells Handle $3 Billion Dell Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Pillsbury represents NTT Data of Plano in a pending acquisition of Dell Services from Round Rock's Dell.

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Gives Draft Approval of $10 Billion LNG Project Run by Exxon and Qatar Co.

By Angela Neville |

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission recently issued a draft environmental impact statement for the $10 billion Golden Pass LNG Export Project located in Sabine Pass, Texas, which is being promoted by Houston-based Golden Pass Products and Golden Pass Pipeline, owned by shareholders ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum International.

Lubbock Federal Judge Tosses $10 Million Jury Verdict

By Miriam Rozen |

Senior District Judge Sam Cummings of the Northern District of Texas in Lubbock overturned a $10 million jury verdict. Cummings granted a defense motion for a renewed judgment and issued a take-nothing final judgment.

Dozens of Big Firms Targeted by Hacker Seeking M&A Info

A Russian hacker living in Ukraine reportedly tried to gain access to the computer systems of 48 law firms involved in M&A deals, according to a story by Crain’s Chicago Business, citing data by intelligence firm Flashpoint.

Michael Carvin of Jones Day (March 4, 2015) outside the Supreme Court.

Equally Divided U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Union Win in Fees Case

In its first high-profile decision since the death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia last month, the court deadlocked 4-4 on Tuesday, handing at least a temporary victory to California teacher union members in a dispute over fees paid by non-members.

Kenneth Soh, Kirkland Soh LLP

Strategy in $1.45M Med Mal Verdict Involved Plaintiff's Daughter Testifying as an Expert

By Miriam Rozen |

Even though he expects the $1.45 million jury verdict he won this month for his clients to be slashed in a final judgment to about $275,000 because of statutory caps, Kenneth Soh expresses no regrets about trying a medical malpractice case in Texas.

Judge Orders Mediation Following $3.5 Million Verdict in Patent Dispute

By Miriam Rozen |

An East Texas federal judge set a timetable for post-trial mediation less than one week after Plano-based Core Wireless Licensing, a patent management company, won a $3. 5 million jury verdict against LG Electronics.

David Skeels, a partner in Fort Worth's Whitaker Chalk Swindle & Schwartz

Partner Alleges He Was Fired By Firm Before Receiving Big Attorney Fee

By John Council |

A former partner in Fort Worth's Friedman Suder & Cooke has filed a shareholder derivative suit against the law firm, alleging he was fired months before he was to receive his share of $1.7 million attorney fees from a hard-fought litigation and was told the shares he owned in the firm were virtually worthless.

In Firearms Patent Fight, Plaintiff Seeks Contempt Order Against Defense Lawyer

By Miriam Rozen |

In a patent infringement lawsuit over firearms technology, a Dallas federal court has referred the plaintiff's motion seeking sanctions and a contempt of court order against the defendant's attorney to a magistrate.

Gregory Bopp, Partner, Bracewell, Houston

Bracewell Partners Elect New Managing Partner

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Gregory Bopp, a partner in Houston who is co-chair of the Houston-based firm's business and regulatory section, will moved into the job on July 1.

Tracey R. Wallace, partner, Schiff Hardin, named Lambda Legal National Co-Chair

Dallas Lawyer Co-Chair of Lambda Legal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Tracey Wallace, a partner in Schiff Hardin in Dallas, said the organization has a lot of work to do, even after the U.S. Supreme Court held in 2015 that same-sex marriage is constitutional.

Former DA, Five Other Lawyers, Resign Law Licenses

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Supreme Court accepted the attorney disciplinary resignations of a former district attorney who pleaded guilty to third-degree felony misapplication of fiduciary funds. The high court also accepted the resignations of five other attorneys who committed misconduct.

John O'Quinn.

John O'Quinn's Longtime Companion Sues to Get His Body Back from Louisiana

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Darla Lexington, who alleges she has a common law marriage with John O'Quinn, filed a lawsuit against a Houston funeral company after the prominent plaintiff's lawyer's body was taken from a mausoleum in Texas and moved to Louisiana.

Oil Field Workers Get $1.5M in Back Wages, Damages Due to Department of Labor Probe

By Angela Neville |

Recently, the U.S. Department of Labor conducted an investigation in the Texas and New Mexico oil and gas sector that led to 241 oil well service workers being paid a total of $1.5 million – $750,000 in back wages and an additional equal amount in liquidated damages.

Amanda Hollis, Kirkland & Ellis

Texas Company Beats Microsoft at the 'Death Squad'

By John Council |

Not many patent holders survive the so-called "Death Squad" inter partes review process without having some part of their claim die. Yet a small Texas-based company recently beat some extremely unfavorable odds when it faced off against Microsoft in a trial before a U.S. Patent and Trademark Patent Trial and Appeal Board and beat back the software giant's attempt to invalidate 53 patent claims.

Texas Supreme Court building

Texas Supreme Court OKs Three-Judge Court Rules

By Angela Morris |

The new rule applies to newly filed and pending redistricting or school finance cases. That means the current school finance case—if remanded to trial court—could be subject to a three-judge court.

Hurricane Katrina.

Emergency Planning Reintroduced for Texas Courts

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Supreme Court has revived an old task force and given it new instructions to get the Texas judiciary ready for disruptions like hurricanes, tornadoes, terrorist events, public health crises and more.

Mostyn Law Firm Non-Suited in Hurricane Ike Suit, Then Hit with Another

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

One day after an ex-client non-suited Mostyn Law Firm in a negligence and breach of fiduciary duty suit, two other former clients filed a malpractice suit against the firm.

Another Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Courthouse

By John G. Browning |

Have you ever wondered why so many lawyer dramas on TV seem to borrow plots and characters that are "ripped from the headlines," as the "Law and Order" narrator might solemnly intone? That's because there are so many bizarre happenings in our actual legal system, that you practically don't need to make anything up anymore. Check out some instances that actually occurred recently in real life.

Ken Paxton

Ken Paxton Dodges Indictment Over Land Deal

By Angela Morris |

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton will not face a new indictment arising from an investigation into a 2004 land deal in which he invested.

Solo Convinces High Court That Murder/Suicide Is Not a 'Common Disaster'

By John Council |

When Crockett solo practitioner Bill Pemberton drafted nearly identical wills for Vencie and Melba Beard, he couldn't have known the East Texas couple would die years later in a tragic murder/suicide.

Akin Gump, Latham Handle Shale Deal

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Houston lawyers in Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld represent Houston's EP Energy Corp. in the pending sale of shale assets in Texas and Louisiana to Covey Park Gas, which is represented by a Houston team from Latham & Watkins.

Karen Gren Scholer, Carter Scholer Arnett Hamada & Mockler

Cornyn Pledges to Help Obama Seat Texas Judges

By John Council |

While Texas' Senior U.S. Senator John Cornyn has pledged to block President Barack Obama's appointment of Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court, the influential Republican member of the Senate Judiciary Committee said he'll work with the White House to seat five Texans on U.S. District Court benches.

People walk away from the broken windows at Zaventem Airport in Brussels after an explosion on Tuesday. Explosions, at least one likely caused by a suicide bomber, rocked the Brussels airport and subway system Tuesday, prompting a lockdown of the Belgian capital and heightened security across Europe.

Baker Botts' Brussels Office Reports That Staff Is Safe

By Angela Morris |

Baker Botts is the only Top 25 Texas law firm that operates an office in Brussels. The office has nine lawyers—three partners and six associates.

Phil Appenzeller, CEO of Munsch, Hardt, Kopf & Harr in Dallas

Net, Gross Income Up in 2015 at Munsch Hardt

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Net income improved by 15.8 percent in 2015 compared with 2014 at the Dallas-based firm.

Spoliation Allegations in Race-Discrimination Lawsuit

By Miriam Rozen |

In a race-discrimination employment lawsuit in Dallas federal court, corporate defendants filed a motion for sanctions against the plaintiff, a certified nursing assistant. The defendants' motion alleges the plaintiff's side engaged in spoliation of evidence and specifically that the plaintiff's lawyer failed to produce relevant email correspondence.

Venoco Reaches Deal in Ch.11 Case that Cuts $1B in Debt

By Angela Neville |

Venoco, an exploration and production company, recently reached an agreement with its senior lenders to reduce the company's debt load and restructure the balance sheet with the lenders agreeing to support a restructuring transaction that will eliminate approximately $1 billion of debt from Venoco's balance sheet.

Kirsten M. Castañeda

Jenner & Block $3M Fee Award Appeal Could Change Arbitration Law

By John Council |

A former patent client is taking its $3 million attorney fee fight against Jenner & Block to the Texas Supreme Court by arguing it's against public policy for the Chicago-based firm to collect after it allegedly walked away from the contingent fee case without just cause.

V&E, Kirkland, Skadden Work on Deal Involving The Woodlands Company

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Vinson & Elkins represents Nexeo Solutions Holdings of The Woodlands in pending acquisition by WL Ross Holdings in deal valued at $1.575 billion.

Tom Van Arsdel, managing shareholder, Winstead PC, Houston

Litigator Takes Job Managing Winstead's Houston Office

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

New managing shareholder Tom Van Arsdel joined the firm right out of law school in 1998.

Mexico Hosts First Electric Power Auction

By Angela Neville |

A large group of electric power producers recently applied for qualification in Mexico's first electricity auction following its energy reform, according the nation's Energy Ministry.

Former Attorney General Staffer Alleges Discrimination

By Angela Morris |

A former director in the Texas Office of the Attorney General alleged in a federal lawsuit that the office terminated her because she is an African American female, and replaced her with an unqualified white man.

Targa Resources Upsizes Total Stock Deal to Around $1 Billion

By Angela Neville |

Targa recently announced that it has received definitive agreements from a number of investors for the purchase of its preferred stock totaling approximately $1 billion.

Justice for Bonnie: How Influential Lawyers Got a Conviction in an Unusual Attorney Murder Case

By John Council |

Her name was Bonnie Arnett Horinek. She was a young Jackson Walker labor and employment partner who was fatally shot in her Fort Worth home in 1995 after a night out drinking with her husband. And the tale of how a group of influential attorneys helped put Bonnie's killer in prison and kept him there is a tale that's worth retelling for the final weekly edition of this newspaper.

Robert S.

Houston Court of Appeals Reverses Robert S. Bennett's Disbarment

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A panel of the Fourteenth Court of Appeals in Houston reversed a trial court's sanction disbarring Robert S. Bennett of Houston, and remanded the case to the trial court for reconsideration of the "appropriate sanction" for violating one disciplinary rule.

Crossfit Muscles Through With Defense Win

By Miriam Rozen |

After a one-week trial and several hours of deliberations, Crossfit Inc. and a Houston affiliate won a 10-2 take-nothing verdict against a plaintiff who alleged he had suffered from rhabdomyolysis, a serious syndrome due to a direct or indirect muscle injury, after a complimentary introductory workout.

Lawyer Ordered to Pay $1.7M for Securities Fraud in Fracking Deal

By Angela Neville |

U.S. District Judge John McBryde recently ruled that defendant Gregory G. Jones, a Texas lawyer who pled guilty in a securities fraud case, is ordered to pay a combined total of $1,176,534 in disgorgement and prejudgment interest.

Nearly $14K in Sanctions Ordered Against Race-Discrimination Plaintiff, Lawyer

By Miriam Rozen |

U.S. Magistrate Jeffrey Cureton of the Northern District of Texas in Fort Worth ordered on March 23 that a race-discrimination plaintiff and her attorney are jointly and severally liable for $13,847 in attorney fees and $1,146 in expenses as sanctions.

Class-Action Plaintiffs Eagerly Await Federal CFPB Rule to Reopen Courthouse Doors

By Miriam Rozen |

Until about five years ago, class-action plaintiffs and their lawyers frequently won big money against consumer finance corporate defendants.

TransCanada Lands Columbia Pipeline for Approximately $13 Billion

By Angela Neville |

Canadian pipeline giant TransCanada Corp. recently announced it has agreed to purchase Houston-based Columbia Pipeline Group for approximately $13 billion.

Ken Paxton

Judge Tosses Taxpayer's Challenge of Fees for Special Prosecutors Pursuing Texas AG

By Miriam Rozen |

A Dallas judge tossed a civil lawsuit filed by a private taxpayer, which challenged the fees paid to the special prosecutors pursuing criminal charges against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

Feds, State Take Off in Different Directions on Governing Drones

By Coyt Johnston |

By re-inventing the wheel for drone privacy, Texas has created a law that is ineffective, difficult to enforce, and does not provide an easy roadmap for those citizens who want to follow the law.

Lessons Learned From an International Shipping Bankruptcy

By Peter McLauchlan |

But how does one balance the competing interests of borrower and creditor in accordance with U.S. and international law? More specifically, what can a lender do to protect its claims without running afoul of the automatic stay imposed by the U.S. bankruptcy law?

Robert G. Reedy, managing partner, Porter Hedges, Houston

Porter Hedges Revenues Drop With Oil Prices

By John Council |

Energy and litigation practices propelled Porter Hedges to have one of its best earning years ever in 2014. And by the same measure, work slowdown in both practice areas caused the Houston firm's gross revenue to drop by 3.5 percent in 2015.

Mark Lanier of Lanier Law Firm

Federal Jury Issues $502M Verdict Against Johnson & Johnson, DePuy

By Miriam Rozen |

A Dallas federal jury delivered on March 17 a $502 million verdict against Johnson & Johnson and one of its subsidiaries, DePuy Orthopaedics. The jury issued the decision after a nine-week trial and one week of deliberations.

Brian Butcher

Dog Bite Leads to $695K Jury Verdict

By Miriam Rozen |

In a negligence case in the 415th District Court in Parker County, a jury issued this month a $695,000 verdict against the owners of a canine that bit their neighbor.

Greenberg Traurig

Merger Talks End Between Greenberg Traurig, Berwin Leighton Paisner

The talks are off between the 1,950-lawyer Greenberg Traurig and London's 550-lawyer Berwin Leighton Paisner.

Which Texas Law School Zoomed Up in Rankings?

By Miriam Rozen |

According to U.S. News & World Report, one Texas law school moved up quite a bit on the list.

Ex-client Sues San Antonio Firm, Lawyer

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Houston-area man sued Davis, Cedillo & Mendoza and a shareholder, alleging they failed to respond to a motion for summary judgment, leading to an adverse judgment against him.

Dan Butcher, managing partner of Strasburger & Price

Strasburger & Price Has Disappointing Financial Year

By John Council |

Dallas' Strasburger & Price had a less than satisfying financial year as its gross revenue experienced a 5.8 percent dip—a drop from $99 million in 2014 down to $93.5 million in 2015.

Obama Nominates 5 for Texas U.S. District Courts

By John Council |

It's been a big week for judicial nominations for President Barack Obama who, in addition to naming Supreme Court justice, has picked five people to serve on Texas' U.S. District Courts.

Encryption is the Key to Securing Sensitive Information

By Raymond L. Panneton |

Because each law firm is different, so too will their cybersecurity plan. Despite the differences in law firms, there are things that can be done universally to establish reasonable safeguards of client information, the first being encryption.

Merrick Garland.

The Quotable Merrick Garland: A Collection of Writings and Remarks

President Obama on Wednesday was expected to nominate Chief Judge Merrick Garland of the federal appeals court in Washington to the U.S. Supreme Court. We pored over Garland's decisions and public remarks in recent years. What follows are highlights.

President Barack Obama, announces the nomination of chief judge Merrick Garland, right, to the U.S. Supreme Court, at the Rose Garden.  March 16, 2016.

D.C. Circuit Judge Merrick Garland Nominated to Supreme Court

Merrick Garland, the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and a former U.S. Justice Department lawyer who led the investigation of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, was nominated Wednesday to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Greenberg Traurig Hires Two Lawyers for Dallas, Mexico City

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

The two new shareholders in the firm's Latin American and Iberian practice will work out of the firm's Dallas and Mexico City offices.

Landowners Hit Chesapeake Energy with Antitrust Case

By Angela Neville |

Unhappy landowners recently brought an antitrust class action lawsuit against Chesapeake Energy Corp. and other defendants in an Oklahoma federal court, and alleged that the defendants rigged bids and otherwise depressed the amounts they paid to property owners for the acquisition of oil and gas leasehold interests and producing properties in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act.

Amending Cyber History: Is There a Right to be Forgotten?

By Steven H. Thomas |

Sometimes editing cyberspace sounds like a good idea.

East Texas Woman Sues Beaumont Lawyer, Firm

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Kountze woman filed negligence and a breach of fiduciary duty suit against Weller, Green, Toups & Terrell and partner B. Adam Terrell.

Ken Paxton

Special Prosecutors Counter Texas Attorney General's Bid to Dismiss His Criminal Case

By Miriam Rozen |

In a brief filed March 14, special prosecutors for the state countered Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's arguments for why an appellate court should dismiss a criminal case against him. Both sides have requested oral arguments, but a date has not yet been set.

Targa Resources Sues Equipment Manufacturer Alleging $17.7M Loss

By Angela Neville |

In the lawsuit, Targa Resources states that it had entered a contract with Epcon to build the two systems called regenerative thermal oxidizers for a facility at Mont Belvieu, Texas and that Epscon's defective construction of the RTO systems caused them to fail and led to the facility being fined by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

Petco Age Discrimination Suit Dismissed by Federal Judge

By Miriam Rozen |

A Dallas federal judge dismissed age discrimination claims that a former Petco employee had filed against the retailer. The judge dismissed the claims because the plaintiff failed to disclose the employment lawsuit in her Chapter 13 bankruptcy filing.

Civil Rights Group Alleges Texas Voting Rights Violations

By Miriam Rozen |

The Texas Civil Rights Project has a new director and, with her arrival, a renewed focused on voting rights. On March 14, the Austin-based nonprofit filed a lawsuit on behalf of a proposed class of voters and against the director of the Texas Department of Public Safety and the secretary of state.

Southwest Royalties Asks Texas Supreme Court to Toss Out Drilling Equipment Tax

By Angela Neville |

Midland-based Southwest Royalties Inc. is currently battling the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts and the Texas Attorney General over the issue of whether oil and gas drilling equipment is included under a statute that includes sales and use tax exemptions for "manufacturing, processing and fabrication."

Andrew Baker, managing partner, Baker Botts

Baker Botts Managing Partner Elected to Second Term

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Andrew Baker, a partner in Houston, will serve as managing partner through the end of 2019.

Med Student Targets Texas A&M with Americans Disabilities Act Claim

By Miriam Rozen |

A former third-year medical student filed a lawsuit against Texas A&M University College of Medicine and Michael Young, the president of its parent school. In it, Danyal Shaikh, the plaintiff, alleges that TAMU staff member misdiagnosed him as suffering from a psychiatric condition, when he in fact suffered from a noncancerous brain tumor.

David Slayton, administrative director of the Texas Office of Court Administration

Texas PACER-like System Launching This Year

By Angela Morris |

It's really happening: Texas is going to get its own version of PACER, destined to debut for judges and lawyers this year, and for the public in mid-2017.

Practice Tips for Rule 202 Pre-Suit Petitions

By James Rogers and Cooke Kelsey |

Properly employed, Rule 202 can be a weapon for plaintiffs. Properly defended, Rule 202 Petitions can be countered and managed by defense counsel.

Gabe Vick (left) and Preston Kamin are new partners at Gray Reed McGraw in Houston, Tx.

New Partners Survey: Partner Counts Increase in 2016 for Big Law in Texas

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Houston firm now elects sharerholders twice a year to benefit associates who took the bar exam in February.

University of Texas System's Sexual Assault Study to Reshape Campus Policies

By Miriam Rozen |

A four-year study of sexual assaults that the UT System's Board of Regents launched last August on 13 of its campuses and institutions will help administrators forge new approaches to handling investigations of such allegations, said Wanda Mercer, an associate vice chancellor.

Drafting Complaints Under the Heightened Pleading Standard for Patent Lawsuits

By Mackenzie Martin and Yoon Chae |

Patent litigators should take note of the change in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and consider the following comments to avoid summary dismissal of their complaints.

Elisa D'Amico

Erin Andrews Is Good Example of Fighting Back

Elisa D'Amico, a cyber civil rights expert, advises victims of online harassment to get immediate help despite the embarrassment.

Texas Gets Rehearing at 5th Circuit for Voter ID Law

By Miriam Rozen |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit on March 9 agreed to rehear en banc civil-rights plaintiffs case against Texas' voter ID law.

Hays County Judge's DWI Case Scheduled for Plea, Sentencing

By Angela Morris |

A Hays County court-at-law judge who was arrested for drunk driving last year appeared to be headed for trial, but the case took a sudden turn last week after a pretrial hearing.

Louisiana Citizens Sue Exxon for Alleged Harmful Plant Emissions

By Angela Neville |

A Louisiana environmental group recently slammed Texas-based ExxonMobil with a federal lawsuit alleging that the oil giant has continuously disobeyed Clean Air Act requirements by allowing hazardous pollutants to be released from its Baton Rouge chemical plant.

John Minor Wisdom U. S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit building, New Orleans, LA.

5th Circuit Resurrects Petrobras' $400 Million Case Over Alleged Defective Marine Tether

By Angela Neville |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit recently reversed an earlier ruling of a Houston federal court that threw out the case brought by Petrobras America Inc. and certain underwriters at Lloyd's London against Vicinay over an alleged defective marine chain in which they were seeking $400 million in damages.

Mark Sloan Partner, Thompson & Knight, Dallas. Become managing partner in February 2016

Gross Revenue, Net Income Up in 2015 at Thompson & Knight

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Busy trial, transactional and bankruptcy/restructuring practices led to a 12.3 percent increase in net income in 2015 for Dallas-based Thompson & Knight.

Judge Tosses Lawsuits Against University of Texas

By Miriam Rozen |

A state district judge has dismissed lawsuits filed by two men who claimed the University of Texas unfairly targeted them and denied them due process after they were accused of committing sexual assaults.

Joe Dunn, partner, of Wigington, Rumley, Dunn & Blair in Corpus Christi.

Family Awarded $124.5M Verdict Against Volkswagen for Design Defect

By Miriam Rozen |

After a monthlong trial and two and half days of deliberations, a San Antonio jury issued this month a $124.5 million verdict against German auto manufacturer Audi AG and its parent company and distributor, Volkswagen Group of America.

Austin Lawyer Heads to Prison for Fraud

By Angela Morris |

"Looking at this scheme, the only way it worked was because a lawyer was involved," said Assistant U.S. Attorney Belinda Beek, who prosecuted Austin solo practitioner Patrick Lanier. "He did a lot of the paperwork ... used to take money."

Texas Supreme Court building

Cause of Action Case Teed Up for Texas Supreme Court

By Angela Morris |

Does Texas law recognize a cause of action for tortious interference with inheritance rights? Intermediate appellate courts have disagreed and the issue is teed up before the Texas Supreme Court.

E-Filing Return-For-Correction Rate Drops

By Angela Morris |

When e-filing first became mandatory in the largest Texas counties, a top complaint among lawyers was that clerks frequently returned filings for failing to follow e-filing rules. The issue might go the way of the dinosaurs.

GTLS bug

The 2016 Go-To Law Schools

Our report on the U.S. law schools supplying the most associates to the nation’s largest law firms.

Jurors Award Erin Andrews $55M in Suit Over Nude Video

A jury awarded Erin Andrews $55 million on Monday in her lawsuit against a stalker who bought a hotel room next to her and secretly recorded a nude video, finding that the hotel companies and the stalker shared in the blame.

Lawyers Win $213K in Attorney Fees Representing Dad

By Miriam Rozen |

Lewis Isaacks, a partner in Plano's Gay Mccall Isaacks Gordon & Roberts, and Emily Newhouse, a Plano solo, together represented Newhouse's father, a crop insurance representative, and his company in a dispute against the owner of an insurance company.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Jeff Brown on March 4, 2016 helps seventh grade students at Gregory-Lincoln Education Center in Houston play a game matching milestones in Texas judicial history. Brown helped launch the Houston Bar Association's new Teach Texas Program.

Lawyers, Judges Teach Judicial Civics in New Program

By Angela Morris |

Teach Texas, a pilot program by the Houston Bar Association and Texas Supreme Court Historical Society, sends lawyers and judges into classrooms to teach judicial civics and history. They hope the program spreads across Texas.

Houston Federal Judge Invalidates Patent for Oil Field Equipment

By Angela Neville |

U.S. District Judge Alfred Bennett recently dealt with a patent feud over drilling technology involving a casing centralizer used in wellbores and ruled that the patent was invalid.

Crews work to clean up oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill that washed ashore at Pensacola Beach in Pensacola, Florida.

Fisherwoman Alleges False Representation in BP Litigation

By Miriam Rozen |

A Vietnamese-American boat owner, captain and fisher woman filed a lawsuit against Bob Hilliard and his firm, Hilliard Munoz Gonzales in Corpus Christi, and John Cracken and his firm, The Cracken Law Firm in Dallas. In her lawsuit, the plaintiff, Thim Nguyen, alleges that the two high-profile plaintiff lawyers stole her name and identity and those of 45,500 other Vietnamese-Americans who fish for a living in the Gulf of Mexico, as part of their plan to gain more than $2 billion in payments from BP after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Nathan Hecht

Texas Office of Court Administration Report Shows Discrepancies in Judicial Security

By Angela Morris |

A recent report shows differences and areas for improvement across Texas courthouses in the way they prohibit weapons, screen visitors at entrances, respond to judges who ask for increased security and more.

Sidley, Steptoe Advise Benefit Street and Rex Energy in $175M O&G Deal

By Angela Neville |

Represented by the firm of Steptoe & Johnson, Rex Energy recently entered into an agreement with Benefit Street Partners, which was advised by the firm of Sidley Austin, to jointly develop oil and gas wells in the Moraine East and Warrior North areas in Pennsylvania and Ohio, respectively.

Texas Settlement Has FanDuel Stop Paid Entries May 2

Texas has reached a settlement with online daily fantasy sports site FanDuel requiring the company to stop accepting paid entries for cash prizes statewide on May 2.

Stephanie Zapata Moore is the VP and GC at Luminant in Dallas TX.

GC Stephanie Zapata Moore Shines as Luminant’s Legal Leader

By Anthony C. Williams |

Long before Stephanie Zapata Moore was vice president and general counsel at Luminant, the Dallas-based competitive power generator, she said her mother told her nine-year-old self she was so argumentative she should be a lawyer.

Q&A with GC at Luminant—Best Practices: Experience, Respect and Knowledge

By Anthony C. Williams |

Texas Lawyer spoke with Stephanie Zapata Moore, vice president and general counsel at Dallas-based Luminant, and asked her questions about best practices when dealing with outside counsel. Here are her answers, edited for style and length.

Examining the Scope of OCLSA's Jurisdiction in Energy-Related Disputes

By Rob Velevis and Mason Parham |

Oil and gas companies their attorneys should take note: Some district courts within the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit appear to be watering down the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, a powerful, albeit underutilized tool for the removal to federal court of oil and gas disputes otherwise governed by state law.

K&L Gates, Former Partner Sued Over Representation

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

An Ector County businessman and his companies allege lawyer Anthony Newton of Houston borrowed $115,000 for equity partnership buy-in to K&L Gates and has not repaid it.

Restructuring Options for Still-Liquid Energy Companies

By Dan Prieto, Tom Howley and Basheer Ghorayeb |

With prices projected to remain low into 2017, an energy company with too much leverage—but with significant cash and other liquidity—may mistakenly delay addressing its balance sheet issues, believing that a restructuring can be postponed until its liquidity is nearly depleted.

Mark Kelly, partner, Vinson & Elkins, Houston

Gross, Net Dip in 2015 at Vinson & Elkins

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Chairman Mark Kelly said flat financials in 2015 follow the firm's record year of 2014.

News Corp. Proposed Deal Could Top $73 Million in Fees for Class Counsel

By Miriam Rozen |

Five law firms that represent a class of corporate plaintiffs pursuing antitrust litigation against News Corp. may receive attorney fees equal to as much as 30 percent of a proposed $244 million settlement--or $73 million.

Liberty Insurance, Cameron Settle Case Involving BP Deepwater Litigation

By Angela Neville |

Just a week before their case involving a $50 million insurance dispute was to be heard by the Texas Supreme Court, Cameron International Corp. and Liberty Insurance Underwriters reached an agreement.

Sam Grover

Lawsuit Over Crosses on Sheriff's Patrol Vehicles

By Angela Morris |

When sheriff's deputies in a rural West Texas county put stickers of crosses on their patrol vehicles, it sparked public debate and commentary from Texas politicians at the highest levels. Now it's also sparked a lawsuit.

Plaintiffs: Lawyers, Firms Botched Lawsuit and Bankruptcy

By Angela Morris |

Three Austin lawyers and two firms are in the crosshairs of a legal malpractice lawsuit for allegedly botching representation in an underlying claim and subsequent company bankruptcy.

South Texas College of Law in Houston, TX.

Alum, Wife Donate $1.3 Million to South Texas College of Law

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

South Texas College of Law alumnus and board member Richard Anderson and his wife, Susan, donated more than $1.3 million to the Houston law school for scholarships, tuition support and renovations.

NAACP CEO to Speak in Houston about Racial Profiling

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Cornell Williams Brooks is a featured speaker March 3 at the Yale L. Rosenberg Memorial Lecture at the University of Houston Law Center.

Cross-Examination of Neuropsychologist Who Examined NFL Players Brings Big Verdicts

By Miriam Rozen |

At two Texas trials last month, plaintiffs at each won more than $10 million jury verdicts after their lawyers cross-examined the same defense, Francisco Perez, a clinical neuropsychologist. Perez worked previously for an insurance company, evaluating NFL players' requests for disability benefits.

Jerry K. Clements

Gross Revenue, Net Income Up at Locke Lord in 2015

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Revenue per lawyer and profits per partner decline slightly for Locke Lord when comparing with revenue per lawyer and profits per partner before the merger with Edwards Wildman Palmer in 2015.

5 Mindsets For Better Lawyer Health

By Michael P. Maslanka |

Here is a distressing box score: 20 percent of lawyers combat depression; 44 percent of lawyers grapple with alcohol/substance abuse; and 19 percent fight off anxiety.

The Days of Spilling Trade Secrets in Litigation Could Be Numbered

By Elisaveta (Leiza) Dolghih and Israel R. Silvas |

The court's ruling will have an effect on the strategic decisions of whether a trade secrets misappropriation case is worth pursuing; how a protective order should be structured in terms of access to trade secret information produced during the lawsuit; how discovery is structured and, most importantly, which attorneys and experts should be engaged to prosecute and defend such claims.

Aubrey McClendon

Updated: Indicted Ex-Chesapeake CEO Dies in Fiery Single-Car Crash

By Sean Murphy |

Aubrey McClendon, a natural gas industry titan, was killed when police say he drove his sport utility vehicle "straight into a wall" in Oklahoma City on Wednesday, a day after he was indicted on a charge of conspiring to rig bids to buy oil and natural gas leases in northwest Oklahoma.

JoAnne Musick

Amici: Gang Injunction is Unconstitutional

By Angela Morris |

Harris County is trying to go medieval on a group of alleged gang members, according to criminal defense lawyers who filed an amicus brief in a civil lawsuit.

Southlake Attorney Faces Allegations of Investor Rip-Off

By John Council |

A Southlake attorney is facing both a criminal charge and a civil allegation in Tarrant County related to allegations that she ripped off real estate investors.

Trouble with Trebles: Damages Under the Deceptive Trade Practices Act

By James H. Creedon |

Understanding the definitions of "knowingly" and "intentionally" under the DTPA is critical to proper pleading, and failure to comprehend the required standard could significantly change the potential recovery.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Washington, D.C.

Texas Requests 5th Circuit Examination of Environmental Protection Agency's Regional Haze Plan

By Angela Neville |

Texas and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are now tangling over the rule that the EPA recently issued to take the place of the state's proposed revision to its state implementation plan for cutting regional haze.

Protesters for and against abortion rallied outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, March 2, 2016.

Deep Divisions Over Abortion as Justices Hear Texas Case

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Wednesday in a contentious abortion rights case from Texas, toggling between technical issues and deep disagreements over the basic right of women to choose abortions. Conservative justices were sharply critical about what they saw as a lack of evidence about the impact of the law on women in the state. The court's three female justices—Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan—were joined by Justice Stephen Breyer in criticizing the law.

Texas Supreme Court building

GOP Incumbents Defeat Challengers in Texas Supreme Court Races

By John Council |

Three well-funded incumbents on the Texas Supreme Court had no trouble defeating their challengers during a raucous March 1 Super Tuesday Republican primary election.

Visitors outside the U.S. Supreme Court on August 29, 2015.

High Court Rejects Request for Same-Day Audio in Abortion, Immigration Cases

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday turned down a request from news media and transparency organizations for the same-day release of the audio of oral arguments in key upcoming abortion and immigration cases. The court's rejection of the audio request contrasts with last April's arguments in Obergefell v. Hodges, the same-sex marriage case.

AkinMears Settles Suit Filed by Ex-Employee

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

"The settlement agreement is signed," said the defense attorney representing the Houston mass tort firm and two partners.

David Jones

Texas Attorney Wins Big Ruling for 'Mexico's Madonna'

By John Council |

When pop star Gloria de Los Angeles Trevino Ruiz alleged she was defamed in a television broadcast, the singer, who's also known as "Mexico's Madonna," provoked an international dispute of sorts by filing a civil lawsuit against three Mexican media defendants in a Texas state district court.

Andrew Baker, with Baker Botts

Baker Botts Tops $1M in Revenue Per Lawyer

By Miriam Rozen |

Andy Baker, the managing partner of Baker Botts, heralded the milestone that his Houston-based firm reached this year with its financial reporting.

Chris Dorbandt

Austin Criminal-Defense Lawyer Fends Off Client's Multiple Legal Attacks

By Angela Morris |

Austin criminal-defense solo shares advice about handling difficult clients after fending of an unhappy client's ineffective assistance claims, attorney disciplinary grievance and legal malpractice lawsuit.

Avoid Noncompliance in International Human Rights Obligations

By Tom Wilson, Cristina Lunders and Karla Pascarella |

International human rights can touch practitioners and their clients in all practice areas including contracts, mergers and acquisitions, environmental compliance, labor and employment, and litigation matters.

Arkansas Property Owners Fight Texas-based ExxonMobil Pipeline Co. in U.S. Court of Appeal for The 8th Circuit

By Angela Neville |

In their appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeal for the Eighth Circuit, Arkansas landowners are pushing to resurrect a class action against Texas-based ExxonMobil Pipeline Co., and other Exxon affiliates, pertaining to the rupture of the Pegasus pipeline in Mayflower, Arkansas, that occurred in 2013.

Tom Rhodes

Knock Out: $17.47M Verdict After Recreational Boxing Matches

By Miriam Rozen |

A removed helmet ranked as the most challenging hurdle for Tom Rhodes during a trial that concluded with a jury awarding $17.47 million to his clients, including a teen who suffered head injuries after engaging in a recreational boxing event.

New Federal Law Cracks Down on Child and Forced Labor

According to a 2013 estimate by the International Labour Organization, 168 million underage children still work around the world, often in harsh conditions. A trade law signed by President Obama last week could help stomp out this exploitation.

London Partner Peter Roberts Named Head of Andrews Kurth Global Oil & Gas Practice

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe Hires London Lateral from Andrews Kurth to Head Global Oil and Gas Practice

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Peter Roberts joined Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe on Feb. 29 as a partner in London to serve as head of the firm's global oil and gas practice.

Texas House Speaker Joe Straus

Texas House Speaker Joe Straus Focuses on Energy Issues for Next Legislative Term

By Angela Neville |

Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio, recently spoke at the Texas Independent Producers and Royalty Owners Association Convention in San Antonio and discussed how the Texas Legislature intends to look at several critical issues related to the battered energy sector once the legislative session begins in January.

$11M Verdict Follows Trampoline Park Accident

By Miriam Rozen |

With 500 trampoline parks operating nationwide and more than a dozen in Texas, Charlie Gustin hopes a Houston jury's award of $11.485 million to a teen who suffered a head injury will light up as a warning message for those park operators.

L to R: William Howell and Alison Boren

Sidley Hires 2 Lateral Partners from Baker Botts

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Corporate finance partner Alison Boren and corporate M&A partner William Howell joined Sidley Austin as partners in Dallas on Feb. 29.

David Skeels, a partner in Fort Worth's Whitaker Chalk Swindle & Schwartz.

Texas Patent Infringement 'Cybor' Killer Case May Finally Be Dead

By John Council |

A Texas patent infringement case once touted as the "Cybor Killer" may finally be dead after the U.S. Supreme Court denied review to the dispute Feb. 29.

Judge Julie Kocurek greets folks attending a welcome back party in her honor.

390th District Judge Julie Kocurek Resumes Bench After Assassination Attempt

By Angela Morris |

There was a standing ovation, hoots and hollers as 390th District Judge Julie Kocurek took the bench for the first time since she survived an assassination attempt with serious injuries last November.

Defense Lawyers, Prosecutors Disagree on Rick Perry Ruling's Significance

By Angela Morris |

Defense lawyers say the CCA's ruling in Perry's case opens the door to arguments that courts should decide more types of as-applied challenges pretrial. But prosecutors say it won't work—the ruling was narrow and limited.

Texas Supreme Court Revives Lawyer's Whistleblower Claim

By Angela Morris |

The Texas Supreme Court has given another shot to a former government lawyer who alleged he got fired after blowing the whistle that the state was illegally seeking reimbursement from some Medicaid recipients.

Vessels equipped with water cannons try to fight the devastating Deepwater Horizon fire.

BP Well Site Leader Acquitted in 2010 Deepwater Oil Spill Case

By Angela Neville |

A BP well site leader, Robert Kaluza, was acquitted on a charge that he was negligent in interpreting a critical test and that his actions contributed to the massive 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

5miles Sues eBay in Trademark Dispute Over Mobile App

By John Council |

E-commerce businesses come up with so many similar smartphone apps that consumers can easily become confused. That's why the owners of 5miles have sued the online auction behemoth eBay in a Dallas federal court for trademark infringement. 5miles allege they first came up with a logo and an app that connects buyers within five miles.

Baker Botts, Andrews Kurth Assist with Chesapeake's Pending Sale of $385M in O&G Assets to FourPoint Energy

By Angela Neville |

Chesapeake Energy Corp. recently entered an agreement to sell its remaining natural gas-heavy property in the Western Anadarko Basin for $385 million to FourPoint Energy, a privately held exploration and production company based in Denver.

Andrews Kurth managing partner Bob Jewell

Gross Revenue, Net Income Drop in 2015 at Andrews Kurth

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Robert Jewell, managing partner of Houston-based Andrews Kurth, said the firm exceeded its forecast and focused on profitability and revenue per lawyer.

Mikal Watts Goes Pro Se at His Own Criminal Trial

By Miriam Rozen |

Despite the adage that any man who represents himself has a fool as a client, Mikal Watts "can make it work," Rusty Hardin said.

Clarence Thomas.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas Takes Over 5th Circuit Duties from Late Justice Antonin Scalia

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas will handle emergency appeals from Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas, the court announced Thursday, taking over those duties from the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

Deborah Williamson, managing director, Cox Smith Matthews, San Antonio

Texas Lawyers and Firms are More Conservative, Study Finds

By Angela Morris |

As the primary election approaches, it's interesting to note that American lawyers tend to be more liberal than the public, but Texas lawyers skew conservative. Some of the most conservative big firms are in Texas.

Reese Riemer, a cowboy from Stinnett, Texas who is suing the sponsors of The American rodeo in federal court claiming they stiffed him for $600,000 in prize money.

Texas Cowboy Sues The American Rodeo to Lasso $600K in Prize Money

By John Council |

Days before the beginning of an event known as the "world's richest one-day rodeo," a Texas cowboy has sued sponsors of The American Rodeo in an Amarillo U.S. District Court alleging the defendants stiffed him for $600,000 in prize money.

He Who Shall Be Named: Rick Perry

By Miriam Rozen |

What's in a name? A lot, according to Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Judge Cheryl Johnson, who wrote one of the two dissenting opinions objecting to the majority ruling this week dismissing the criminal case against former Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

Justin Strother, Strother Law Firm, Houston.

Nightclub Battle Leads to $818K Final Judgment

By Miriam Rozen |

Justin Strother helped a nightclub owner in Houston prevail on allegations that a co-owner of the nightclub did not comply with fiduciary obligations.

Mark Bennett

Houston Lawyer to Georgia Supreme Court: Girls Aren't Harmed When Treated as Sex Objects

An attorney challenging a state law against sexually exploiting children on the Internet told the Georgia Supreme Court that he doesn't believe teenage girls are harmed by being treated as sex objects—and he attempted to enlist the lone woman justice to echo his point.

Judge Larry Meyers of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals

No Shortage of Dissents in Former Governor Rick Perry Ruling

By Miriam Rozen |

Judge Lawrence E. Meyers wrote that the majority had "decided to employ any means necessary to vacate the two felony counts against Governor Rick Perry."

Tim Powers, Haynes and Boone partner in Dallas, MP as of Jan. 1, 2015

Despite Energy Decline, Haynes and Boone's Profits Soar

By John Council |

Litigation, bankruptcy and energy— yes, energy—practices all helped Dallas' Haynes and Boone have a robust 2015, increasing the firm's gross revenue by 6.8 percent and its net profitability by 7.2 percent over the previous year.

Sysco Uses Freshfields on $3.1B Acquisition

By Brenda sapino jeffreys |

Food service distributor Sysco Corp. of Houston announced a definitive agreement to buy Brakes Group of London, another food service distributor.

V&E, Kirkland Help With EIG Global's $375M Investment in Rice Midstream

By Angela Neville |

Houston-based Vinson & Elkins recently advised Rice Energy Inc. in a completed $375 million equity investment by EIG Global Energy Partners, which was advised by attorneys from Kirkland & Ellis, into Rice Midstream Holdings (RMH) in exchange for $375 million of Series B Units in RMH and common units.

Burlington Northern Santa Fe Seeks $16K in Attorney Fees After Court Grants Sanctions Against Race-Discrimination Plaintiff

By Miriam Rozen |

Burlington Northern Santa Fe is seeking $16,487 in attorney fees after a federal judge granted the railroad company's motion for sanctions and spoliation of evidence against a plaintiff claiming racial discrimination and her attorney.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX)

Ted Cruz Asks Houston Federal Judge to Dismiss Eligibility Suit

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Ted Cruz, who is seeking the Republican nomination for president, filed a motion Feb. 22 asking a federal judge in Houston to dismiss a suit seeking a declaratory judgment on his eligibility.

Gov. Rick Perry

Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Dismisses Former Governor Rick Perry's Criminal Case

By Angela Morris |

The CCA opinion—accompanied by two concurrances and two dissents—dismissed Perry's charge of abuse of official capacity, and upheld a lower court's decision to dismiss the charge of coercion of a public servant.

5 Methods of Impeaching a Witness, Partner Writes

By Quentin Brogdon |

Impeachment is an incredibly potent arrow in the quiver of the cross-examiner. Mastering the five basic methods of impeachment increases the cross-examiner's odds of minimizing the damage inflicted by a harmful witness.

Ken Paxton

Experts: Paxton Appellate Arguments Come Too Soon

By Angela Morris |

A former Texas Court of Criminal Appeals judge and a criminal procedure scholar say that an appellate court considering Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's case might find he's raising his arguments too soon and he must try again after his trial.

Neal S. Manne

Susman Godfrey Partner Wants Texas to Pay $973K to Wrongfully Imprisoned Client

By Miriam Rozen |

Neal Manne, a managing partner in Houston's Susman Godfrey, expects his pro bono client, a former death row inmate who has been exonerated, to receive a lump-sum payment of $973,000 from the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

C. Wade Cooper, managing partner of Dallas-based Jackson Walker.

Real Estate Big Driver for Jackson Walker Revenue Growth in 2015

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Dallas-based Jackson Walker disposed of more than 200,000 pounds of paper when moving to new offices and a nearly paperless work environment.

How Evidence Came To Be Sexy, Again, Partner Writes

By David A. Oliver |

With all of these insights into the flaws in our decision-making it ought then to come as no surprise that recent years have seen " …an explosion in theoretical and empirical scholarship exploring the law of evidence," according to Michael S. Prado in "The Nature and Purpose of Evidence Theory."

Texas Law Deans React to Accreditation Proposal

By Angela Morris |

An American Bar Association committee recently approved a change to law school accreditation standards dealing with bar exam passage rates. Texas Lawyer emailed Texas law school deans for their reactions.

Letter from the Editor: Exciting Changes Coming to Texas Lawyer

By Heather D. Nevitt |

Now, on our 31st anniversary, we are changing our format to enable you to get more of the great journalism you have come to expect from our team, but faster and better.

The Reinvention of Texas Lawyer FAQ

Developing and executing a strategy that leverages digital-first capabilities and opportunities is critical to our future success. Today, I’m excited to announce that the Texas Lawyer is leading the way on our Legal Media reinvention strategy. As of April 1, Texas Lawyer will be a robust, daily digital offering complemented by a glossy, print magazine distributed monthly.

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C.

Lawyer Disobeyed SEC Rules in Fracking Deal, Judge Rules

By Angela Neville |

Gregory G. Jones was recently determined to have violated U.S. securities law by U.S. District Judge John McBryde for allegedly bilking his investors in relation to two securities offerings, one involving an oil and gas exploration venture and the other a fracking water filtration business deal.

Katherine Stadler

Total Fees in Energy Future Holdings' Bankruptcy Nearing $300 Million

By Angela Neville |

"The professional fees in the Energy Future Holdings' bankruptcy are probably now in the range of approximately $300 million," according to Katherine Stadler, a shareholder with the Madison-based firm Godfrey & Kahn and a member of the fee committee in Energy Future Holdings' Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Thurgood Marshall in 1967

Thurgood Marshall's Confirmation Hearing Topic of Book

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

On the same day lawyers throughout Texas learned of the death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, the author of a book on Thurgood Marshall's long confirmation hearing 50 years ago was topic of a book event at Texas Southern University.

Justice Antonin Scalia delivers a speech to first year law students at Georgetown Law Center in November 2015.

Texas Conservative Leaders Mourn Justice Antonin Scalia

By John Council |

Jurists and political leaders in Texas, from former President George W. Bush to Gov. Greg Abbott, praised the legacy of Antonin Scalia.

Chuck Herring

Recent Opinion Clarifies Conflicts in Lateral Hires

By Angela Morris |

The case answers a basic question that bothers law firms when they're looking to hire laterals: What happens if the new hire is conflicted out of representing a client because his old law firm represented an adverse party?

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Washington, D.C.

Valero Energy Sues EPA Over Biofuels Plan

By Angela Neville |

Valero Energy, the San Antonio-based energy company, recently sued the EPA in a legal challenge to the federal agency's efforts to expand the use of ethanol and other biofuels to power the nation's transportation system.

Open Carry Law Presents Unsightly Small Business Problems

By Monica F. Oathout |

In light of the new Texas Open Carry Law that went into effect at the beginning of the year, small business owners who don't want open or concealed handguns in their stores are confronted with some unattractive options.


'Hannibal Lecter' Judge Resigns From the Bench

By John Council |

A district court judge who was famously reprimanded after giving a "Hannibal Lecter" speech at a political function has resigned from the bench after jurors in his court alleged he improperly contacted them with campaign solicitation letters.

Michelle Rosenblatt Joins Armbrust & Brown; Plus Other 'On The Move' News

Michelle Rosenblatt has joined Armbrust & Brown in Austin as senior counsel; Mark C. Howland and Samuel E. Joyner have joined Carrington, Coleman, Sloman & Blumenthal in Dallas as partners; and more.

James Gibson

Houston Lawyer Jason Gibson Wins $53 Million Jury Verdict for Clients

The clients were family members of Angel Garcia, a 28-year-old construction worker who died while working on renovations to Texas A&M's Kyle Field.

Teen Driver Gets Small Sum for Alleged Injuries

On Jan. 28, a teenager who claimed back and neck injuries in an intersection collision recovered $457.

Fracking operation in Texas.

Sierra Club Sues Oil and Gas Companies for Allegedly Causing Earthquakes Through Fracking

By Angela Neville |

According to the complaint filed in federal court in Oklahoma by the Sierra Club, three companies' practice of injecting liquid oil and gas waste into deep ground wells alledgedly contributed to an increase of more than 5,800 earthquakes in Oklahoma in 2015, up from an annual average high of 167 from 1977 to 2009.

James Gibson

Houston Lawyer Pursues Big-Screen Ambitions

By Miriam Rozen |

Granted his face doesn't garner the recognition of movie stars like Al Pacino, Anthony Hopkins or Mickey Rourke, but a Houston lawyer has nonetheless begun accumulating screen time at a pace to keep up with such celebrities.

prayer; Clipart; for Texas Lawyer use only

Is Prayer in Courtrooms Constitutional?

By Angela Morris |

A justice of the peace is opening his courtroom proceedings each day with a prayer by a volunteer chaplain. It has sparked a conversation about the constitutionality of prayer in court.

Why a Sci-Fi Movie and Broadway Musical Should Provide Hope for the Future of Diversity

By Kathleen J. Wu |

Women and minorities are now in a powerful enough political, cultural and economic position to have their complaints heard and, in some cases, heeded.

Wayne Reaud

Federal Judge Dismisses Claims Against Wayne Reaud, Five Others

By Miriam Rozen |

A federal judge dismissed claims filed against well-known Beaumont litigator Wayne Reaud and five other defendants—all named in a sprawling complaint filed by two African-American plaintiffs.

William Mateja

Bill Mateja Joins Polsinelli in Dallas

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

William Mateja, a lawyer for Texas AG Ken Paxton, said he can grow his health care fraud and abuse practice at Polsinelli because it has a "whole stable" of health care clients.

Dallas Startup Opens Co-Working Space Just for Lawyers

By Angela Morris |

Coworking spaces have become a trend over the last couple of years among young professionals. Now a startup in Dallas has launched a coworking space just for attorneys.

Estate of Doctor Sues Two Firms, Houston Lawyer

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

The estate of Dr. Craig Jefferies of Houston alleges the defendants did not directly inform him of developments in a lawsuit.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX)

Judge Strikes Intervention in Suit Challenging Cruz's Eligibility

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

A Fort Worth man running as an independent candidate for president sought to intervene in declaratory judgment suit.

Polsinelli's Russell Welsh.

Polsinelli To Absorb Large IP Group From Novak Druce

Continuing its systematic expansion, Polsinelli agreed to take in "the vast majority of lawyers and staff" from Houston-based IP boutique Novak Druce Connolly Bove & Quigg.

Lawyers and Advisers Agree: White-Knuckle The Falling Stock Market This Year

By ALM Staff |

In a recent survey conducted across ALM’s legal news websites for about three days, 170 respondents out of more than 200 said they would work longer or stay the course to stave off investment pinches.

May 17, 2015 - A Waco Police SWAT vehicle is parked behind the Twin Peaks restaurant following a shootout between three rival motorcycle gangs earlier in the day. Gunfire erupted leaving at least nine people dead, according to police.

Waco Biker Wants to Be Tried in Houston, Dallas or Austin—Just Not Waco

By Miriam Rozen |

A district judge in McLennan County is scheduled April 1 to consider a request by Dallas lawyer Clint Broden, who represents a defendant in the Waco biker criminal cases, to move his client's criminal trial from Waco to Austin, Dallas or Houston.

Gross Revenue, Net Income Slip in 2015 at Bracewell

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Houston-based Bracewell also saw a 7.2 percent decline in count of full-time equivalent lawyers and 8.9 percent decline in number of equity partners.