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Texas

  • May 10, 2018

    Andrews Kurth Beats Malpractice Appeal In Real Estate Fight

    A Texas appellate court has affirmed the dismissal of American Realty Trust Inc.’s claims the former Andrews Kurth LLP gave it bad advice about backing out of a late-1990s apartment complex acquisition deal, finding the claims time-barred.

  • May 10, 2018

    Oil and Gas Partner Rejoins Dentons In Dallas

    Dentons has welcomed back to its Dallas office an energy partner with decades of experience with oil- and gas-related matters ranging from contracting work to production after he spent about a year at Gray Reed & McGraw LLP.

  • May 10, 2018

    Change-Averse Oil & Gas Sector Gets Prods To Go Digital

    In an industry not known for change, energy sector leaders should recognize that by embracing technology and digitization, they can increase production efficiencies, profits and in some cases employee satisfaction, though such fundamental shifts will not come without legal risk, experts said Thursday.

  • May 10, 2018

    Starn O'Toole Vet Makes Headway Toward 9th Circ. Bench

    President Donald Trump’s choice for a Ninth Circuit vacancy sailed through the Senate Judiciary Committee with bipartisan support Thursday, putting one of the president’s picks for the high-profile court on the Senate floor for the first time.

  • May 10, 2018

    Trump Policies And More Leave Oil Prices A Hazy Unknown

    The fate of oil prices over the next year is hazy and fraught with potential volatility thanks to a cocktail of factors ranging from Trump administration policies, including the decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal, to decreased production out of Venezuela and constraints on the Permian Basin, experts told oil and gas industry professionals gathered in Houston on Thursday.

  • May 9, 2018

    DuPont Gets $7M Leukemia Liability Award Tossed

    A Texas state appellate court has overturned a $7 million jury award to an industrial painter who claimed his leukemia was caused by exposure to a chemical found in paint and thinners manufactured by DuPont Co., ruling the patient’s experts did not base their testimony on reliable evidence.

  • May 9, 2018

    Phillips 66 Beats ERISA Suit Over Savings Plan's Assets

    Phillips 66 didn’t flout federal employment law by letting retirement plan participants continue to invest in its former parent company’s stock after the subsidiary was spun off, even though the shares ceased to be employer securities, a Texas federal judge ruled Wednesday, in what he said was a first-of-its-kind decision.

  • May 9, 2018

    Bankrupt iHeartMedia Seeks OK To Pay $108M In Bonuses

    Radio broadcast giant iHeartMedia Inc. Tuesday asked a Texas bankruptcy court to approve the payment of up to $108 million in bonuses to more than 700 employees, saying the incentive is required for its restructuring to succeed.

  • May 9, 2018

    Enbridge Sells Natural Gas Biz To ArcLight Unit For $1.12B

    Energy infrastructure company Enbridge Inc. on Wednesday said its indirect subsidiary agreed to sell a natural gas business to an affiliate of Boston-based private equity firm ArcLight Capital Partners for $1.12 billion in a cash deal steered by Norton Rose Fulbright and Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP, respectively.

  • May 9, 2018

    Houston Area Residents Say River Authority Flooded Homes

    Dozens of residents from a north Houston community have filed a pair of lawsuits in Texas court, alleging the San Jacinto River Authority unconstitutionally took their property when it fatefully unleashed water from Hurricane Harvey that flooded their homes.

  • May 9, 2018

    SEC Penalizes Paralegal In School District Muni Bond Fraud

    A Texas paralegal with limited experience in municipal bond offerings accepted hefty fees from a school district while holding himself out as a well-versed adviser, in violation of securities laws, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission said on Wednesday, ordering him and his advisory firm to pay more than $500,000 in disgorgement and civil penalties.

  • May 9, 2018

    Exxon Ends Arbitration Fight After Exit From $73M Oil Row

    ExxonMobil Corp. has dropped its Texas federal court suit to escape arbitration with investors who claim they dumped $73.2 million into a failed project to explore for oil in Papua New Guinea, after the investors voluntarily dropped the company from international proceedings last week.

  • May 9, 2018

    Texas Tells Court Revenge Porn Ban Doesn't Limit Speech

    Texas asked a state appellate court Tuesday to rethink its ruling invalidating the Texas revenge porn statute as unconstitutionally overbroad, saying in a motion for rehearing that the decision "ignored basic rules for statutory construction" in its interpretation of the law.

  • May 9, 2018

    Texas Sanctuary City Suit Won't Get 2nd Look At 5th Circ.

    The Fifth Circuit has declined to revisit its ruling upholding a Texas statute that bars so-called sanctuary city policies, leaving in place a decision that the law is largely not in violation of the U.S. Constitution.

  • May 9, 2018

    Texas Hospital's Nixing Of Patient's Bill Can't Ax Class Claims

    A panel of judges on Texas' Sixth Court of Appeals determined Wednesday that Good Shepherd Medical Center can't duck the proposed class claims of patients fighting the fairness of their bills simply by waiving a lead plaintiff's $25,000 tab, a ruling that reversed a trial court's decision to toss the suit.

  • May 9, 2018

    Senate Confirms La.'s Engelhardt For 5th Circ.

    The Senate confirmed President Donald Trump’s fourth pick for the high-profile Fifth Circuit on Wednesday, sending U.S. District Judge Kurt D. Engelhardt to the appellate panel.

  • May 9, 2018

    Houston Firm Adds Ex-Bechtel Corp. Counsel As Partner

    West & Associates LLP has added a public finance, business and corporate attorney with experience as senior counsel for global engineering and construction company Bechtel Corp. as a partner in its Houston office.

  • May 8, 2018

    Construction Firm Sued Over Unpaid Texas Apartment Bonds

    Surety and insurance provider The Guarantee Co. of North America USA slapped a Houston-area construction firm with a lawsuit in Texas federal court Tuesday, claiming it owes millions of dollars after failing to meet certain obligations under bonds associated with a residential building project.

  • May 8, 2018

    Miner Wants Oil Cos. Tied To $1.37B Venezuela Award

    A Canadian mining company seeking to collect on a recently confirmed $1.37 billion arbitration award against Venezuela asked a Texas federal judge on Monday to hold oil companies that allegedly helped the county relocate its assets when creditors came knocking responsible for fraud.

  • May 8, 2018

    Broadcom Sues Toyota, Others In Texas And ITC Over GPS IP

    Toyota, Panasonic and others are infringing the asserted claims of six Broadcom Corp. patents covering navigation systems and other technologies used in automobiles, the California-based company said Monday at the U.S. International Trade Commission and in Texas federal court.

Expert Analysis

  • Texas Contractors Can't Rely On Limited Power Of Attorney

    David Winter

    While obtaining an assignment of an insured’s claim, instead of a post-loss assignment of benefits, is certainly appealing for a contractor, the consequences of engaging in such conduct in Texas significantly outweigh any purported benefits, says David Winter of Zelle LLP.

  • Top Tax Changes For Law Firms: What Lawyers Need To Know

    Evan Morgan

    For law firms structured as corporations, a lower maximum corporate tax rate and repeal of the corporate alternative minimum tax are good news. But many law firms are pass-through entities, so deduction limitations mean they'll see less benefit from the new tax law, says Evan Morgan of CPA and advisory firm Kaufman Rossin PA.

  • Texas High Court Ruling On Patent Agents May Be Influential

    Perry Napolitano

    The Supreme Court of Texas last month became the first state high court to extend the attorney-client privilege to nonattorney patent agents. The Silver ruling could trigger similar decisions in other states, as two dozen other jurisdictions have the same attorney-client privilege rule upon which the decision was based, say attorneys with Reed Smith LLP.

  • Opinion

    Companies Should Avoid The BigLaw Bonus Structure

    Michael Moradzadeh

    Since passage of the Trump tax plan last year, companies have been touting bonuses they’ve handed down to rank-and-file employees. This highlights the trend of employers favoring bonuses over pay raises in the belief that variable, short-term rewards are less risky to the business than permanent increases in labor costs. But law firms have used this strategy for years — and there are dangers, says Michael Moradzadeh of Rimon PC.

  • Limitations Of Exclusivity Defense In Workers’ Comp Cases

    Pierre Grosdidier

    The Corpus Christi Court of Appeals' recent decision in Halferty v. Flextronics America is important because it confirms that the higher participants in the usual construction contractual chain cannot merely push workers’ compensation requirements down to the lowest-tier subcontractors and still enjoy the exclusivity defense, says Pierre Grosdidier of Haynes and Boone LLP.

  • Chief Innovation Officer — The New Star On Legal Teams

    Mark Williamson

    Over the past few years, forward-thinking law firms have expanded their talent pools to include a chief innovation officer, whose responsibilities include spearheading the implementation of technology. It is a smart move, says ​​​​​​​Mark Williamson, co-founder and chief technology officer at Hanzo Archives Ltd.

  • How State AGs Can Fight Student Loan Crisis The Right Way

    Douglas Gansler

    For both consumer protection and political reasons, state attorneys general desperately want to assist constituents who have taken out federal student loans and are now struggling with repayment. However, state AGs will undoubtedly fail in the courtroom if they attempt to do so through litigation, say attorneys with Buckley Sandler LLP.

  • Betting On Change: States Plan For Sports Gambling Decision

    Aaron Swerdlow

    If New Jersey wins its sports betting case at the U.S. Supreme Court, expect many states to implement new legislation legalizing sports betting and industry regulation. If New Jersey does not win, it will anger many state legislators that were preparing to implement their own legislation, says Aaron Swerdlow of Gerard Fox Law PC.

  • Opinion

    National Lawyers Need National Licensing For National Courts

    EJ Hurst II

    Just last month, a number of legal groups asked the Northern District of California to strike its rule requiring that, before seeking federal court admission, attorneys first be licensed by the state of California. It is irrational to exclude seasoned federal practitioners from general admission due to state bar approval while allowing raw state lawyers who have never been inside a federal courtroom, says attorney EJ Hurst.

  • How Regulatory Power Is Moving To The States

    Ashley Taylor

    Despite the current momentum of federal deregulation, state agencies are buttressing consumer protections and ensuring there is no lapse in enforcement. State attorneys general are leading a charge into the perceived vacuum where federal agencies have retreated. The decentralization of oversight demands a more strategic, proactive approach to compliance, says Ashley Taylor of Troutman Sanders LLP.