• September 30, 2014

    PE-Backed Midstream Co. Aims To Raise $150M In IPO

    PennTex Midstream Partners LLC, backed by private equity investment funds of Natural Gas Partners, is looking to raise $150 million in an initial public offering of common units for its master limited partnership that will hold assets in northern Louisiana, the company said in a regulatory filing Tuesday.

  • September 30, 2014

    EPA Targets Delek Over Fatal 2008 Refinery Pipe Rupture

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency filed suit Monday against Delek Refining Ltd. in Texas federal court alleging hazardous substances were released into the air after a 2008 pipe rupture and fire that killed two employees at one of its refineries.

  • September 29, 2014

    Roy-G-Biv, ABB Settle Patent Case After Rare AIA Review

    Roy-G-Biv Corp. and engineering company ABB Inc., which were embroiled in a software patent infringement dispute that led to a landmark inter partes review finding, told a Texas federal court Monday that they agreed to settle the litigation and dismiss all claims with prejudice.

  • September 29, 2014

    Jurors Can Hear About MDL In DePuy Hip Implant Bellwether

    A Texas federal judge on Monday allowed the plaintiff in a bellwether trial against Johnson & Johnson unit DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. to tell jurors about the 6,500 other cases pending in multidistrict litigation that allege defects in a metal-on-metal hip implant, lifting an earlier order that barred discussion of the other plaintiffs.

  • September 29, 2014

    Disbarred Texas Atty's Former Firm Drops Theft Claims

    A disbarred Texas attorney has escaped a lawsuit his former firm was pursuing against him for allegedly diverting revenue from the firm's coffers after it was sold to another lawyer at a bankruptcy auction.

  • September 29, 2014

    Engineering Firm Argues Stock Deal Negates $7M Verdict

    An engineering firm asked the Texas Supreme Court on Friday to throw out the $7 million verdict it was slapped with in a stock purchase dispute involving two smaller companies, saying disgruntled shareholders who scored the award are contractually entitled to only a fraction of that amount.

  • September 29, 2014

    Texas Judge Decertifies Meritage FLSA Collective Action

    A Texas federal judge on Monday decertified a collective action against Meritage Homes Corp., holding that a group of home sales representatives aren't sufficiently similarly situated to move forward as a group in the Fair Labor Standards Act suit and ordered the parties to prepare for a November trial with six plaintiffs.

  • September 29, 2014

    Fertilizer Co. Sues DOJ Agency Over Fatal Blast Evidence

    CF Industries Inc. has sued the U.S. Department of Justice's Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Texas federal court, saying the agency is illegally withholding critical documents and evidence it needs to defend itself in litigation stemming from a deadly fertilizer plant explosion in April 2013.

  • September 29, 2014

    Ex-Gray Reed Attys Join Forces With Slattery Marino Team

    A pair of former Gray Reed & McGraw attorneys who teamed up earlier this year to start a Houston-based energy transactions and regulatory practice have expanded into New Orleans with the signing of a Slattery Marino & Roberts partner and his team, the firm said Monday.

  • September 29, 2014

    Anadarko Seeks Deepwater Absolution From Full 5th Circ.

    Anadarko Petroleum Corp. on Friday asked the full Fifth Circuit to reconsider a panel decision assigning it some liability for the Deepwater Horizon disaster, arguing the spill resulted from problems with Transocean Ltd. and BP PLC’s oil rig, not the well itself.

  • September 29, 2014

    Exelon Drops $500M On GE Turbines For Gas Plant Upgrades

    Merchant power giant Exelon Corp. is building new combined-cycle gas turbines at two of its gas plants in Texas and will pay General Electric Co. more than $500 million to supply high-efficiency turbines for the upgrades, the companies announced Monday.

  • September 29, 2014

    Texas DUI Atty Sues Rival Firm Over 'DoNotBlow.Com' TM

    A Houston DUI attorney who uses the trademarked Web address “DoNotBlow.com” is suing a rival drunk driving defense firm for using the similar sounding “Don'tBlow.com” as its URL.

  • September 29, 2014

    NiSource Spins Off Pipeline Unit, Creates MLP

    Utility giant NiSource Inc. said Sunday it’s splitting off its Texas-based gas pipeline business and dropping its assets into a master limited partnership, which looks to raise $800 million through an initial public offering, the latest sign that utilities are moving away from a hybrid business model to focus on regulated operations.

  • September 29, 2014

    Encana Strikes Texas Oil Gusher With $7.1B Athlon Buy

    Canadian oil and gas producer Encana Corp. is significantly expanding its footprint in Texas, agreeing Monday to buy Texas-based independent Athlon Energy Inc. in a cash-and-debt deal worth $7.1 billion that plants Encana's flag squarely in the oil-rich Permian Basin.

  • September 26, 2014

    Attys Hit With $1.7M Suit Over Medical Partnership Row

    Houston litigation boutique Matthews & Associates and a solo practitioner were slapped with a $1.7 million malpractice suit in Texas state court Friday by a former client who says his lawyers bungled litigation over his stake in a medical practice.

  • September 26, 2014

    Austin City Council Moves Toward Authorizing Uber, Lyft

    City leaders in Austin, Texas, voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to provisionally approve rules that would allow rideshare operators Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. to operate legally within city limits.

  • September 26, 2014

    5th Circ. Keeps In Place Texas Ban On Online Horse Bets

    The Fifth Circuit on Thursday upheld Texas requirements requiring horse racing bets be placed in person, rejecting a challenge from the company that runs the Kentucky Derby and was seeking business for its online betting website.

  • September 26, 2014

    Insurer Claims Real Estate Developer Ducked Legal Fees

    RLI Insurance Co. hit American Newland Communities LP with a lawsuit in Texas federal court Friday claiming the real estate developer has refused to reimburse RLI for attorneys' fees the insurer paid defending the company from a state court lawsuit accusing it of deceptive trade practices.

  • September 26, 2014

    Ex-Texas Judge Cops To Defrauding Social Security Agency

    A former Texas judge confessed Thursday to charges that she scammed the Social Security Administration out of $16,000 that the agency unwittingly paid to a dead man, according to federal prosecutors.

  • September 26, 2014

    Greenberg Traurig Nabs Public Policy Pro From Baker Botts

    Greenberg Traurig LLP gave its government law and policy practice a boost this week by hiring an experienced lobbyist and government relations attorney away from Baker Botts LLP as a shareholder in its Houston office, the firm said Thursday.

Expert Analysis

  • Timing Is Everything In 'Take-Home' Asbestos Cases

    Douglas B. Pfeiffer

    Foreseeability continues to be the most important consideration in "take-home" asbestos exposure cases and Bootenhoff v. Hormel Foods Corp. demonstrates the importance of the time frame of the employee’s alleged exposure in cases based on negligence, say attorneys at Miles & Stockbridge PC.

  • Riley Cellphone Search Rule Is Slowly Sweeping The Nation

    Carrie Sarhangi

    Commentators opined that the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark Riley v. California opinion would clear up the murky waters created by courts less decisive or intrepid, and, just three months later, the patience of our nation’s courts in tolerating warrantless cellphone searches has already waned, says Carrie Sarhangi of Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads LLP.

  • Texas Pro-Policyholder Case Will Impact Excess Insurers

    Kay M. Brady

    Had the court in Plantation Pipe Line Co. v. Highlands Insurance Co. sided with Highlands it would be difficult for policyholders to settle with underlying insurers for less than applicable limits without risking forfeiture of higher level coverage, say Kay Brady and Denise Yasinow of K&L Gates LLP.

  • Navigating Terms Of Degree Post-Nautilus

    Sunjeev Sikand

    While the case law on indefiniteness continues to evolve, recent rulings offer valuable insight into how one might use the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Nautilus Inc. v. Biosig Instruments Inc. as a tool to attack and defend claim terms of degree in litigation, and also provide some much-needed guidance to patent prosecutors when drafting claims, says Sunjeev Sikand of RatnerPrestia PC.

  • Texas Common Carriers Should Consider Permitting Process

    Antroy Arreola

    The Texas Railroad Commission's proposed amendments for pipeline operators to obtain a T-4 permit will demand more information and feature an annual renewal, which could be particularly significant for common carriers since it will take time to develop proposed tariffs and put customer contracts in place once a project is announced, says Antroy Arreola of Locke Lord LLP.

  • AMJ Investments May Not Alter Texas Claims Landscape

    James W. Holbrook III

    A recent Texas appellate court ruling in United National Insurance Co. v. AMJ Investments LLC — involving claims for hurricane damage to an office building — is undoubtedly at odds with the litany of post-Castaneda cases that applied the independent injury requirement to Section 541 cases, but until other courts adopt the ruling, AMJ Investments is best viewed as an outlier, says James Holbrook III of Zelle Hofmann Voelbel & Mason LLP.

  • Opportunities And Pitfalls In The Legal Cloud

    David Houlihan

    Like "big data" and other effective software marketing buzzwords, “cloud” makes something that is very complex sound simple — and even friendly. Most attorneys are not prepared to dig into the distinctions between public, private and hybrid cloud models, or the niceties of how or where their data is transmitted and stored, says David Houlihan of Blue Hill Research Inc.

  • Roundup Of Fracking Studies Still Shows No Consensus

    Jed P. Winer

    As three recent academic studies on the environmental and health impacts of hydraulic fracturing show, all aspects of the drilling practice are under the microscope as studies are being published at a rapid pace — sometimes with indefinite or conflicting conclusions, says Jed Winer of Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP.

  • A General Counsel's Top 10 Billing Tips

    Francis M. Drelling

    Nothing makes an in-house counsel feel like they are being nickeled-and-dimed more than receiving a $3.50, stand-alone invoice. Forcing anyone to spend time on a $3.50 invoice is, quite frankly, just not cool, says Francis Drelling, in-house counsel at Specialty Restaurants Corp.

  • Unmasking And Suing The Anonymous Social Media Speaker

    Steven Richard

    Parties contemplating a lawsuit over anonymous online postings may seek court-ordered, presuit discovery to investigate who owns and operates the social media account. Recent New York and Texas decisions evidence the necessity to research and understand fully the extent to which a jurisdiction allows presuit discovery, says Steven Richard of Nixon Peabody LLP.