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DIRECT FAX: 512.480.5845

About

Rick has a wide range of experience in business and commercial litigation of all types. He has tried jury and non-jury cases, and has pursued and defended appeals, in state and federal courts. He has also arbitrated many cases. Rick makes a point of helping clients realistically assess the likelihood of success at each stage of litigation so that informed business decisions can be made.

PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS

  • Admitted to bar, 1976, New Mexico; 2001, Texas; 1976, U.S. District Court, District of New Mexico; 1978, U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit; 1996, U.S. Supreme Court; 2001, U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas, and U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit; 2003, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas; 2007, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas and Northern District of Texas.
  • Education: Carleton College (B.A., cum laude); Georgetown University Law Center (J.D.).

REPRESENTATIVE EXPERIENCE

Corporate governance and fiduciary duties

  • Represented utility’s chief financial officer in securities fraud class actions and shareholder derivative actions in state and federal lawsuits
  • Defense verdict representing title company against $11 million breach of fiduciary duty claim
  • Defense of directors and officers against securities fraud claims and in shareholder derivative lawsuits
  • Represented Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and Resolution Trust Corporation in claims against financial institutions’ directors, officers and advisors

Professional liability

  • Defense of investment advisor against claims of ERISA and securities law violations. Tiblier v. Dlabal, 743 F.3d 1004 (5th Cir. 2014)
  • Represented plaintiff corporate creditors in accounting malpractice claims
  • Defense of lawyers, engineers, and other professionals. E.g., Goeth v. Craig, Terrill & Hale, L.L.P., No. 03-03-00125-CV, 2005 WL 850349 (Tex. App.-Austin, April 14, 2005, no pet.)
  • Represented plaintiff insurance company in actuarial and accounting malpractice claims

Intellectual property

  • Defense verdict representing national builder against $40 million copyright infringement claim involving architectural plans
  • Represented plaintiff in trade secret claim involving conductive rubber computer keyboards
  • Defense verdict representing engineer against $26 million trade secret claim involving power amplifier for cellular telephones

Other

  • Litigation of employment disputes, including retaliation and discrimination claims under Title VII, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Family Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Fair Labor Standards Act. E.g., Serur v. Churchill Forge Properties, No. 03-03-00501CV, 2004 WL 1404141 (Tex. App.-Austin June 24, 2004, no pet.)
  • Represented plaintiff account executives against international franchisor in claims for fraud and interference with contract; represented franchisors and franchisees in claims of trade dress violation, copyright infringement, non-competition covenants, and quality control. E.g., Yelin v. Carvel Corp., 893 P.2d 450 (N.M. 1995); Five Keys, Inc. v. Pizza Inn, 653 P.2d 870 (N.M. 1982)
  • Litigation of contract, surety, and other disputes. E.g., Hasse Contracting Co. v. KBK Fin., Inc., 956 P.2d 816 (N.M. 1997), aff’d, 980 P.2d 641 (N.M. 1999)
  • Litigation of business torts including disparagement, unfair practices, interference with contract and prospective advantage
  • Arbitration of claims against brokerages for churning, unsuitability, failure to supervise

PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS

  • Vice-Chair, Committee on Professional Officers’ and Directors’ Liability Law, American Bar Association Tort and Insurance Practice Section, 1993-95; Service on Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of the State of New Mexico; Service on State Bar of New Mexico Continuing Legal Education Committee.
  • Member: Austin Bar Association (Civil Litigation and Appellate Sections); American Bar Association (Litigation Section); State Bar of Texas (Litigation Section; Antitrust and Business Litigation Section); State Bar of New Mexico; American Judicature Society; Texas Bar Foundation Fellow; The American Law Institute; Litigation Counsel of America.

AWARDS AND HONORS

COMMUNITY

Personal

  • Avid downhill skier
  • Grew up in Europe and Asia
  • Daughter taught three years with Teach for America before attending and graduating from University of Texas law school; Son awarded Masters Degree in Meteorology at University of Miami 
  • Wife is pediatric nurse practitioner

PUBLICATIONS AND PRESENTATIONS