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What the team is known for High-quality commercial litigation group accompanying a superbly talented appellate bench widely seen as the most accomplished in Texas. Especially active in significant securities, energy, trade secrets and class action matters. Acts for a diverse client portfolio, which includes major financial services, transportation, telecommunications, energy and natural resources companies. Also offers strength in white-collar defense, with a particular emphasis on representing clients in the healthcare industry.
Strengths One source states: "The firm is a great repository of knowledge on the style and preferences of the Texas bench. The team also has deep insight and understanding of the relevant case law and the law surrounding procedural issues, both in Texas and other jurisdictions."
One source appreciates the "excellent legal advice that takes into consideration the practical realities of our business."
"The firm's written and oral presentations are impeccable," reports one client, while another appreciates that the lawyers are "incredibly client-focused and client-driven."
Work highlights Represented White Star Petroleum in a breach of contract and fraud dispute brought by an uninvited suitor claiming right of first refusal to participate in a joint venture concerning a long-term gas processing agreement.
Acted on behalf of the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System in the Fifth Court of Appeals in Dallas, convincing the court to uphold public pension plan amendments reducing prospective interest payments under Article 16, Section 66 of the Texas Constitution.
Advised nursing home operator Preferred Care Partners on two False Claims Act qui tam complaints in the Eastern District of Kentucky, involving alleged provision of substandard care that failed to comply with Medicare and Medicaid regulations and the artificial inflation of RUGs scores for residents at several facilities.
Anne Johnson has a distinguished appellate practice which sees her handling significant matters in courts across Texas. She acts on behalf of a broad client base, including companies in the manufacturing, sports and banking sectors. "If we have a particularly difficult issue that might end up on appeal, I would call her," reports one client, adding: "She's extremely responsive and a great writer as well - she does thoughtful and strategic work."
Ben Mesches frequently assists clients with appealing multimillion-dollar trial verdicts. A client comments: "He was great at preparing us for things that would come up on appeal. The best thing about him is that he can say what to expect."
Interviewees characterize Daniel Gold as "very knowledgeable, very strong and professional." He has cultivated an excellent reputation for his handling of securities litigation and receives particular praise for his "strong command of the legal landscape on derivative practice."
Cochair of the firm's appellate practice Karen Precella is experienced in handling a wide array of appeals, with noted prowess in the representation of energy companies. "She's so calm and thinks things through so carefully," according to one source, who adds: "It's always a pleasure to see her mind work through issues and I've always learned a lot from her."
Katherine Addleman frequently advises companies and executives on government investigations and enforcement actions. Clients appreciate that "she has great relationships, knows the law and has very good judgment on what to push back on and what not to." One source says: "She does a real nice job of developing strategy and working with witnesses, as well as collaborating with other lawyers."
Lynne Liberato is noted for her considerable appellate expertise. Recently, she has been involved in major appeals involving insurance, personal injury and trademark disputes.
Mark Trachtenberg comes highly recommended for his appellate capabilities. "He has an excellent ability to see the broad picture and evaluate appellate issues before they even arise at the trial stage," according to one source, who adds: "He is also very responsive, a superlative writer and a good ideas person." He advises prominent clients in a broad range of matters, including insurance, bankruptcy and product liability appeals.
Mike Hatchell is widely regarded as "one of the deans of the appellate Bar." He has a wealth of experience handling major appeals, including in the Texas Supreme Court.
The "absolutely brilliant" Nina Cortell has a superb track record of securing victories in the Texas Supreme Court and the Fifth Circuit. Clients say: "She is knowledgeable not only in appellate law but also regarding the local courts and judges, which is invaluable for an appellate case."
Thad Behrens leads the firm's national class action defense practice and is known for his high-quality work in the securities space. He frequently advises companies and executives facing a broad range of allegations, including misleading statements and breach of fiduciary duty. Clients comment: "He offers great subject matter expertise, is super client-friendly and great at litigation and legal judgment."