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Appellate Attorneys Deborah Hankinson, Rick Thompson Among Best Lawyers in Dallas

DALLAS – Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson and Managing Partner Rick Thompson have been selected among the Best Lawyers in Dallas by D Magazine based upon their work in the area of appellate law. The 2013 honors mark the eighth time Ms. Hankinson has been… + read more

DALLAS – Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson and Managing Partner Rick Thompson have been selected among the Best Lawyers in Dallas by D Magazine based upon their work in the area of appellate law.

The 2013 honors mark the eighth time Ms. Hankinson has been selected among Dallas’ best lawyers. It is the first for Mr. Thompson.

“Being selected among the elite attorneys in Dallas has always been an honor that I take great pride in, but I am aware that I am also lucky to be surrounded with exceptional attorneys, starting with Rick,” says Ms. Hankinson, a former Dallas appellate court and Texas Supreme Court justice. “This is a well-deserved recognition of his tremendous work.”

The 2013 listing of the top attorneys in Dallas was determined through a peer-review voting process and ballots submitted by nearly 9,000 local lawyers. Those casting ballots could only nominate others within their own practice area. The final list was compiled by an independent panel of distinguished attorneys, along with the magazine’s editors. The complete list will be included in the May 2013 edition of D Magazine.

“It is humbling to have your work recognized,” says Mr. Thompson. “I have been fortunate in being able to work at a firm and for clients that present fascinating and challenging work.”

Mr. Thompson’s practice focuses on appeals related to governmental matters, as well as commercial litigation. A former Texas Assistant Solicitor General, he argued the precedent-setting sovereign immunity case Tex. Natural Res. Conservation Comm’n v. IT-Davy before the Supreme Court of Texas. Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, he is also a member of the commission that governs board certification for Texas appellate lawyers.

Among the most respected appellate attorneys in Texas, Ms. Hankinson also has a nationally recognized arbitration and mediation practice. She is Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, a Fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, a member of the American Law Institute, and sits on the Board of Directors of the American Arbitration Association.

Hankinson LLP, the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation. The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during and after trial. Dallas-based Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well. Learn more about the firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

 

Dallas Attorney Deborah Hankinson Addresses Appellate Judges Conference

DALLAS – Dallas attorney and mediator Deborah Hankinson, founder of the appellate law firm Hankinson LLP, recently was invited to participate in a panel discussion about how appellate lawyers can best frame the issues in their cases during the Appellate Judges Education Institute 2012 Summit… + read more

DALLAS – Dallas attorney and mediator Deborah Hankinson, founder of the appellate law firm Hankinson LLP, recently was invited to participate in a panel discussion about how appellate lawyers can best frame the issues in their cases during the Appellate Judges Education Institute 2012 Summit in New Orleans.

Ms. Hankinson, a former Justice of the Supreme Court of Texas and the Texas 5th District Court of Appeals in Dallas, joined the panel to discuss “Making Your Appellate Position More Appealing: The Importance of Framing the Issues.”

Joining her on the panel were Judge Stephen Higginson of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of appeals and Professor Judith Fischer of the University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law. The panel moderator was Deena Jo Schneider of Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP.

“The summit presents a wonderful opportunity to delve into issues that are important to judges and appellate lawyers,” Ms. Hankinson says. “It’s a valuable experience, whether you’re engaging in a discussion on a panel or listening as part of the group.”

The summit is a combined effort of the Appellate Judges Education Institute at Southern Methodist University’s Dedman School of Law and the American Bar Association’s Judicial Division Appellate Judges Conference. The four-day program includes presentations from judges, attorneys and legal scholars from across the country. This year’s program included a special session with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

In addition to her appellate practice, Ms. Hankinson handles complex, multi-party mediations for parties in litigation, as well as pre-suit conflict resolution. She also frequently serves as an arbitrator and is a member of the American Arbitration Association’s National Roster of Arbitrators and Mediators.

Hankinson LLP,  the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation. The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during, and after trial. Dallas-based Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well. Learn more about the firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

 

Deborah Hankinson Addresses New Texas Appellate Justices

Hankinson LLP founder and former Texas Supreme Court Justice Deborah Hankinson served as a faculty member for the Texas Center for the Judiciary’s December 2012 College for New Judges Conference in Austin.  Based on her experience both as an appellate judge and an appellate attorney,… + read more

Hankinson LLP founder and former Texas Supreme Court Justice Deborah Hankinson served as a faculty member for the Texas Center for the Judiciary’s December 2012 College for New Judges Conference in Austin.  Based on her experience both as an appellate judge and an appellate attorney, Hankinson taught the course “Proper Role: Opinions & Oral Argument” to Texas’s newest appellate justices.

 

Deborah Hankinson Facilitates American Arbitration Association Course on Managing Arbitration

Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson facilitated the American Arbitration Association’s course entitled “Managing the Arbitration Process for Efficiency & Economy Following the Preliminary Hearing.”  The course gave participants a chance to learn and discuss cost-saving management techniques for arbitrators regardless of individual practice area.  The… + read more

Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson facilitated the American Arbitration Association’s course entitled “Managing the Arbitration Process for Efficiency & Economy Following the Preliminary Hearing.”  The course gave participants a chance to learn and discuss cost-saving management techniques for arbitrators regardless of individual practice area.  The AAA selected Hankinson to facilitate the course due to her “proven track record of effective case management” and her “reputation for being a compelling speaker and facilitator.”

 

Dallas Appellate Attorney Deborah Hankinson Once Again Named to Texas Super Lawyers Top 10 List

DALLAS – Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson once again has earned selection to the annual Texas Super Lawyers list and the magazine’s compilation of the “Top 10” attorneys in Texas. Texas Super Lawyers is published by Thomson Reuters’ Legal division. Each year, the publication rates… + read more

DALLAS – Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson once again has earned selection to the annual Texas Super Lawyers list and the magazine’s compilation of the “Top 10” attorneys in Texas.

Texas Super Lawyers is published by Thomson Reuters’ Legal division. Each year, the publication rates attorneys based on peer surveys, an analysis of the attorney’s work, and a review by a blue-ribbon panel. Less than five percent of all Texas lawyers are named to the final list.

Based on the peer review process and information gathered through extensive research, Texas Super Lawyers also lists the “Top 10” attorneys in the state. Ms. Hankinson has been named among the state’s 10 best lawyers in both 2011 and 2012.

“It’s wonderful to think that your peers view you and your work in such a fashion,” says Ms. Hankinson.

In addition to her appellate practice, Ms. Hankinson maintains a busy schedule of mediation and arbitration work, as well as providing counsel to parties that wish to resolve disputes without going to the courthouse.

The Texas Super Lawyers recognition is the latest of many professional honors for Ms. Hankinson, a former Justice of the Supreme Court of Texas and the Texas 5th District Court of Appeals at Dallas. She is Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and is a fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, as well as a member of the American Arbitration Association’s national roster of neutrals.

Ms. Hankinson’s work and accomplishments are regularly recognized on “top lawyer” lists, including those published by The Best Lawyers in America, Chambers USA, Texas Lawyer, D Magazine and others.

Hankinson LLP, the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation.  The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during, and after trial. Dallas-based Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well. Learn more about the firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

 

Vacatur of Arbitration Award for Evident Partiality Upheld on Appeal

Deborah Hankinson, Brett Kutnick, and Jennifer Stagen represented Occidental Petroleum Corporation and several of its subsidiaries in moving to vacate an arbitration award regarding the interpretation of a purchase and sales agreement.  After extensive briefing and argument, the trial court vacated the arbitration award for… + read more

Deborah Hankinson, Brett Kutnick, and Jennifer Stagen represented Occidental Petroleum Corporation and several of its subsidiaries in moving to vacate an arbitration award regarding the interpretation of a purchase and sales agreement.  After extensive briefing and argument, the trial court vacated the arbitration award for evident partiality by one of the neutral arbitrators.  The First District Court of Appeals in Houston subsequently affirmed the vacatur of the arbitration award, and after requesting full briefs on the merits, the Texas Supreme Court denied the petitioners’ petition for review and motion for rehearing.  Amoco D.T. Co. v. Occidental Petroleum Corp., 343 S.W.3d 837 (Tex. App.–Houston [1st Dist.] 2011, pet. denied).

 

Hankinson LLP’s Government Practice Aids City of Dallas

Hankinson LLP is pleased to announce its successful joint representation of one of the firm’s major clients, the City of Dallas, in six related cases before the Texas Supreme Court.  In these cases, a group of current and retired police officers and firefighters sued the… + read more

Hankinson LLP is pleased to announce its successful joint representation of one of the firm’s major clients, the City of Dallas, in six related cases before the Texas Supreme Court.  In these cases, a group of current and retired police officers and firefighters sued the City for additional pay and benefits under an ordinance adopted by the City in 1979. Deborah Hankinson argued the case before the Texas Supreme Court, and Rick Thompson assisted the City’s attorneys with preparing briefs.

After briefing and argument, the Supreme Court concluded that the police officers and firefighters could not prevail on their claims for declaratory relief because those claims were barred by sovereign immunity.  The Court also concluded that the police officers and firefighters could not prevail on their breach-of-contract claims as pleaded in the trial court; however, the Court remanded the contract claims to the trial court to determine whether a subsequently enacted section of the Local Government Code waived the City’s immunity for those claims.  See City of Dallas  v. Martin, 361 S.W.3d 560 (Tex. 2011); City of Dallas v. Albert, 354 S.W.3d 368 (Tex. 2011).

 

Deborah Hankinson Recognized for Alternative Dispute Resolution and Appellate Practice

Deborah Hankinson’s prominence in the field of alternative dispute resolution continues to grow.  She recently received the highest peer review rating of AV® Preeminent Status in Alternative Dispute Resolution with Martindale-Hubbell™  through a rigorous survey of her peers.  Deborah, who previously served as a Justice… + read more

Deborah Hankinson’s prominence in the field of alternative dispute resolution continues to grow.  She recently received the highest peer review rating of AV® Preeminent Status in Alternative Dispute Resolution with Martindale-Hubbell™  through a rigorous survey of her peers.  Deborah, who previously served as a Justice on the Supreme Court of Texas, also has been invited to join the AAA (American Arbitration Association) Judicial Settlement Conference Service panel, a new service that affords parties the opportunity to bring disputes to a private settlement conference with one of AAA’s specially selected former judges.  The process is non-binding and voluntary and involves significant evaluation by the former judge, who acts as a neutral.

In 2012, Deborah again was recognized by Best Lawyers, which also honored her as its Dallas Lawyer of the Year.  Chambers USA also recognized Deborah again this year, the sixth year in a row that she has received the honor. Additionally, Deborah’s standing in Texas is reflected in several recent accolades. She appears in the 2012 edition of Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers, which is published by Martindale-Hubbell and America Lawyer Media.  Deborah also earned a place on D Magazine‘s 2012 listing of “The Best Lawyers in Dallas.”  This is the seventh time that D Magazine has named her to its “Best Lawyers” list.

For more information, contact Deborah at 214-754-9190 or dhankinson@hankinsonlaw.com.

 

Hankinson Attorneys Honored by Best Lawyers, Martindale-Hubbell

DALLAS – Lawyers from the Dallas-based Hankinson LLP law firm have earned honors from Texas’ Best Lawyers and Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers magazines based on their work in appellate law. Dallas attorney and mediator Deborah Hankinson, founder of Hankinson LLP, appears in the 2012 edition of… + read more

DALLAS – Lawyers from the Dallas-based Hankinson LLP law firm have earned honors from Texas’ Best Lawyers and Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers magazines based on their work in appellate law.

Dallas attorney and mediator Deborah Hankinson, founder of Hankinson LLP, appears in the 2012 edition of Texas’ Best Lawyers magazine, a publication of Best Lawyers in America, which previously named her the Dallas Appellate Lawyer of the Year. Texas’ Best Lawyers was included in the May 25 editions of the Houston Chronicle, The Dallas Morning News, the Austin American-Statesman, the San Antonio Express-News and the Texas editions of The Wall Street Journal.

That honor follows Ms. Hankinson’s appearance alongside fellow firm attorney Brett Kutnick in the 2012 edition of Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers, which was distributed by the same Texas newspapers on March 30, 2012. Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers is published by Martindale-Hubbell and American Lawyer Media.

“The recognition from Texas’ Best Lawyers and Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers reflects our hard work in appellate law, arbitration and mediation at Hankinson LLP,” Ms. Hankinson says. “Praise from our peers means a great deal to us.”

Editors of the 2012 Texas’ Best Lawyers list asked Texas’ top attorneys to identify those lawyers who they would direct a friend or loved one to hire if they could not handle the case themselves. Based on those responses, Ms. Hankinson was named Lawyer of the Year in appellate law in Dallas.

Ms. Hankinson and Mr. Kutnick earned recognition from Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers magazine based on peer ratings compiled by ALM and LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell.

Hankinson LLP, the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation. The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during, and after trial. Dallas-based Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well. Learn more about the firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

 

Hankinson Wins New Sentencing Hearing for Juvenile

Deborah Hankinson successfully argued to the Texas Supreme Court that a juvenile, who was sentenced to twenty years confinement for sexually assaulting his seven year old cousin, was entitled to a new sentencing hearing. The Court held that if the State’s expert had testified truthfully… + read more

Deborah Hankinson successfully argued to the Texas Supreme Court that a juvenile, who was sentenced to twenty years confinement for sexually assaulting his seven year old cousin, was entitled to a new sentencing hearing. The Court held that if the State’s expert had testified truthfully about the reliability of certain scientific evidence, the evidence would have been excluded. The expert misstated the potential error rate of the evidence and inaccurately described the literature supporting or rejecting it. In closing argument, the State repeatedly referred to the expert’s testimony as proof that defendant was a pedophile. Because the expert’s testimony and the State’s use of that testimony contributed to the defendant’s sentence, the Court remanded the case for a new sentencing hearing. In re M.P.A., 364 S.W.3d 277 (Tex. 2012).

 

Dallas Arbitrator, Appellate Attorney Deborah Hankinson to Discuss Effective Arbitration

DALLAS – Dallas arbitrator and appellate attorney Deborah Hankinson will be a featured speaker in a national conference of lawyers, arbitrators and business people addressing arbitration trends and methods for keeping arbitrations from getting out of control. Hankinson, a former Texas Supreme Court justice and… + read more

DALLAS – Dallas arbitrator and appellate attorney Deborah Hankinson will be a featured speaker in a national conference of lawyers, arbitrators and business people addressing arbitration trends and methods for keeping arbitrations from getting out of control.

Hankinson, a former Texas Supreme Court justice and founder of Hankinson LLP, will participate in the panel presentation, “How to Prevent a Runaway Arbitration,” during the American Bar Association Section of Litigation Annual CLE Conference on April 19 in Washington, D.C. The panel will offer practical solutions to help in-house and outside counsel ensure that arbitration remains a cost-effective and efficient alternative to
litigation.

Along with Ms. Hankinson, the panel will include Crowell & Moring LLP Partner Kathryn Kirmayer.  Patricia O’Prey, senior counsel – investigations at GE Capital Americas, will moderate the panel.

“Arbitration is an excellent dispute-resolution tool – when it is used properly,” Hankinson says. “As someone who knows the process, I know it’s my job to keep things on track and to be fair to all. That’s what we plan to discuss.”

In addition to her appellate work, Hankinson’s nationally prominent practice includes serving in arbitrator and mediator roles in disputes. She serves on the Board of Directors of the American Arbitration Association and is a member of the association’s national roster of neutrals. She also consults with trial lawyers with regard to trial strategy and appellate briefs, offering insight as to how appellate courts might view critical issues.

Hankinson is also a former justice on the Fifth District Court of Appeals in Dallas. She is Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and is a fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers.

Hankinson LLP, the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation. The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during, and after trial. Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well. Learn more about the
firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

 

Dallas Appellate Attorney Deborah Hankinson Honored in D Magazine’s 2012 “Best Lawyers” List

DALLAS – Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson has earned a place on D Magazine’s 2012 listing of “The Best Lawyers in Dallas” based on her work for business clients in appellate cases, mediations and arbitrations, and trial consulting. This is the seventh time that D… + read more

Attorney:

DALLAS – Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson has earned a place on D Magazine’s 2012 listing of “The Best Lawyers in Dallas” based on her work for business clients in appellate cases, mediations and arbitrations, and trial consulting.

This is the seventh time that D Magazine has named Ms. Hankinson to its “Best Lawyers”  list. In 2010, the magazine also named her to its list of the best women lawyers in Dallas.

“I am again humbled to receive this honor in a city with so many great attorneys,” Ms. Hankinson says. “It’s an honor not only for me, but also for all of the attorneys at Hankinson LLP who work hard on a daily basis to make sure our clients receive the best appellate representation possible.”

To assemble the exclusive listing of Dallas’ top attorneys, the editors of D Magazine sought nominations from lawyers citywide. A blue-ribbon panel of lawyers met with magazine editors and approved the list, which covers 18 practice areas and will appear in the May 2012 issue of D Magazine.

In addition to her work as a trial and appellate lawyer, Ms. Hankinson served as a Justice
on the Fifth District Court of Appeals in Dallas and the Supreme Court of Texas. She is Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers and serves on the Board of Directors of the American Arbitration Association.

The recognition from D Magazine is just the latest in a long line of similar honors for Ms. Hankinson. In 2011, Texas Super Lawyers magazine named her to a list of the Top 10 attorneys in Texas. Her work also has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America, Chambers USA, Texas Lawyer and the Dallas Business Journal, among others.

Hankinson LLP, the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation. The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during, and after trial. Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well. Learn more about the firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

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Dallas Attorney Deborah Hankinson Named to American Academy of Appellate Lawyers

DALLAS – Noted appellate lawyer Deborah Hankinson, founder of Dallas-based Hankinson LLP, has been elected to the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, an honor reserved for attorneys with a reputation for excellence in appellate work. The American Academy of Appellate Lawyers was established in 1990… + read more

Attorney:

DALLAS – Noted appellate lawyer Deborah Hankinson, founder of Dallas-based Hankinson LLP, has been elected to the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, an honor reserved for attorneys with a reputation for excellence in appellate work.

The American Academy of Appellate Lawyers was established in 1990 to advance the standards and practices of appellate advocacy and to acknowledge outstanding appellate lawyers. Membership is based on nominations by existing fellows as well as recommendations from judges and practitioners. The academy limits membership to no more than 500 people in the United States, and requires that nominees have spent at least 15 years in practice devoted substantially to appeals.

“I’m humbled by this honor and believe strongly in the academy’s mission,” says Ms. Hankinson.

In addition to appellate law, Ms. Hankinson’s practice includes substantial work in the area of alternative dispute resolution, including regular work as a mediator and arbitrator in cases involving a variety of complex legal issues.

Ms. Hankinson is a former Justice of the Supreme Court of Texas and the Fifth District Court of Appeals in Dallas.

In addition to this latest honor, Ms. Hankinson has earned multiple selections to the Texas Super Lawyers list published by Thomson Reuters legal division and Texas Monthly. In 2011, she was named one of the state’s Top 10 attorneys in the Texas Super Lawyers listing.  Additionally, her work has been repeatedly recognized by The Best Lawyers in America and Chambers USA. This fall, she also was named to the “Winning Women” list published by Texas Lawyer.

“We’re very proud that Deborah has earned this recognition,” says Hankinson LLP Managing Partner Rick Thompson. “The academy has formally stated what we’ve known all along: Deborah is a rare and talented appellate lawyer.”

Hankinson LLP, the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation. The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during, and after trial. Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well. Learn more about the firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

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Hankinson LLP Named One of America’s Best Law Firms

DALLAS – The Dallas-based appellate law firm Hankinson LLP is being recognized by U.S. News & World Report and The Best Lawyers in America as one of the country’s “Best Law Firms.” The firm earned a Metropolitan Tier 1 ranking among Dallas appellate firms in… + read more

Attorney:

DALLAS – The Dallas-based appellate law firm Hankinson LLP is being recognized by U.S. News & World Report and The Best Lawyers in America as one of the country’s “Best Law Firms.”

The firm earned a Metropolitan Tier 1 ranking among Dallas appellate firms in the 2011 guide to the nation’s leading law firms.

To compile the “Best Law Firms” listing, researchers with U.S. News and Best Lawyers surveyed thousands of attorneys and law firm clients across the U.S. The results of the survey appear in the November 2011 Best Law Firms publication. The full listing also is available online at http://bestlawfirms.usnews.com/.

Last month, the firm went through a name change when attorney Jeff Levinger departed to form his own firm.

“This honor rightly belongs to everyone at the firm, all the attorneys and staff, who worked so hard on behalf of our clients over the last 12 months, including Jeff,” says Hankinson LLP founder Deborah Hankinson, who also has been selected by The Best Lawyers in America as one of the country’s top attorneys. In addition, Best Lawyers also recently named Ms. Hankinson Dallas Lawyer of the Year in Appellate Law.

To develop the Best Lawyers list, researchers review nearly 3 million confidential evaluations by other attorneys. The full listing is available at www.bestlawyers.com.

The “Best Law Firms” and Best Lawyers honors are just the latest for Deborah Hankinson and the firm. Earlier this year, she was listed among the state’s top lawyers in the annual Texas Super Lawyers publication, earning a spot among the state’s Top 10 lawyers overall. Her other 2011 honors include selection by Texas Lawyer newspaper for its “Winning Women” section, and by D Magazine to its list of Best Lawyers in Dallas. She also has been featured in Chambers USA’s listing of the country’s top lawyers and previously was profiled in the Dallas Business Journal as one of North Texas’ top business defenders.

Hankinson LLP, the preeminent civil appellate firm in the Southwest, provides clients with innovative legal insights and judicial perspective in all phases of litigation. The firm’s attorneys work with trial teams to develop strategies designed to put a case in the best position before, during, and after trial. Hankinson LLP represents national clients, regional companies, governmental bodies, and individuals with trial and appellate matters, and offers mediation and arbitration services as well.

Learn more about the firm at http://hankinsonlaw.com.

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Appellate Court Reverses, Renders Judgment That Plaintiffs Take Nothing in Oil-and-Gas Mineral Interest Title Dispute

In a highly complex title dispute between Texas oil-and-gas operators, the plaintiffs claimed superior title to a mineral lease on a 169.1-acre tract in Concho County, Texas. After the jury found that the plaintiffs had superior title, the trial court ordered the defendants—who possessed and… + read more

In a highly complex title dispute between Texas oil-and-gas operators, the plaintiffs claimed superior title to a mineral lease on a 169.1-acre tract in Concho County, Texas. After the jury found that the plaintiffs had superior title, the trial court ordered the defendants—who possessed and had drilled a producing well on the tract—to turn over possession of the property, drilling equipment, and almost $1 million being held in suspense pending adjudication of the case. Hankinson LLP attorney Deborah Hankinson  represented the defendants on appeal. The Austin Court of Appeals reversed the trial-court judgment, rendered judgment that the plaintiffs take nothing, and also rendered judgment that title and possession of the mineral estate, equipment, and funds belonged to the defendants. The plaintiffs appealed to the Texas Supreme Court, which denied review after requesting full briefing on the merits.  McCammon v. Ischy, No. 03-06-00707-CV, 2010 WL 1930149 (Tex. App.—Austin May 12, 2010, pet. denied).

 

Hankinson LLP Client Obtains Judgment Vacating Arbitration Award

Ruling in favor of Deborah Hankinson’s and Brett Kutnick’s client, Occidental Petroleum, the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s decision to vacate an arbitration award. The court held that one of the arbitrators displayed evident partiality by failing to disclose that, at the time… + read more

Ruling in favor of Deborah Hankinson’s and Brett Kutnick’s client, Occidental Petroleum, the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s decision to vacate an arbitration award. The court held that one of the arbitrators displayed evident partiality by failing to disclose that, at the time the parties approved him as a member of the arbitration panel, the firm at which he worked represented the ultimate parent company of one of the appellants in a mandamus proceeding to prevent the deposition of its CEO. The court held that an objective person could reasonably have concluded that the arbitrator’s nondisclosure of this fact was material, and that it created a reasonable impression of his partiality. The court also concluded Amoco failed to prove that if Oxy had performed a reasonable investigation of the arbitrator, it would have discovered his evident partiality. Amoco D.T. Co., v. Occidental Petroleum Corp., 343 S.W.3d 837 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th Dist.] 2011, pet. denied).

 

Appellate Court Concludes Oil and Gas Producer Properly Paid Royalties on Casinghead Gas Under Long-Term Leases, Renders Judgment That Plaintiffs Take Nothing

In Occidental Permian Ltd. v. Helen Jones Foundation, et al., a group of Texas royalty owners alleged that OPL, an oil and gas producer, had underpaid royalties for casinghead gas produced during carbon dioxide-injection tertiary recovery operations in West Texas. Hankinson LLP was hired to… + read more

In Occidental Permian Ltd. v. Helen Jones Foundation, et al., a group of Texas royalty owners alleged that OPL, an oil and gas producer, had underpaid royalties for casinghead gas produced during carbon dioxide-injection tertiary recovery operations in West Texas. Hankinson LLP was hired to assist OPL during trial, post-trial, and appellate proceedings. After the jury reached a multi-million dollar verdict for the plaintiffs, OPL appealed. Deborah Hankinson argued the case before the Amarillo Court of Appeals, and the Amarillo Court of Appeals reversed the trial court’s judgment, concluding that no evidence supported the jury’s findings. The court of appeals rendered judgment that the plaintiffs take nothing against OPL. Occidental Permian Ltd. v. Helen Jones Foundation, et. al, 333 S.W.3d 392 (Tex. App.—Amarillo Jan. 31, 2011, pet. denied).

 

Expert Testimony Legally Insufficient to Support Verdict

In an appeal from a judgment on a jury verdict against current lease operator for underpaid royalties on casinghead gas, the court of appeals reversed, holding the evidence was legally insufficient. Because the testimony of plaintiff’s expert did not comport with the language of the… + read more

In an appeal from a judgment on a jury verdict against current lease operator for underpaid royalties on casinghead gas, the court of appeals reversed, holding the evidence was legally insufficient. Because the testimony of plaintiff’s expert did not comport with the language of the leases, it constituted no evidence of the operator’s failure to pay royalties. Additionally, the proceeds to which expert pointed as the basis for his theory were proceeds of the sale of gas after processing  rather than as produced at the wellhead. Moreover, the royalty owners’ expert’s testimony did not comport with state law as to the determination of the market value of casinghead gas, and thus did not support the verdict that the lease operators underpaid royalties on market-value leases. Deborah Hankinson represented Occidental Permian in this successful appeal. Occidental Permian Ltd. v. Helen Jones Foundation, 333 S.W.3d 392 (Tex. App. – Amarillo 2011, pet. denied).

 

Supreme Court Strikes Down Unconstitutionally Retroactive Statute

Representing the estate of a worker who died of mesothelioma, Deborah Hankinson successfully argued to the Texas Supreme Court that a statute limiting corporate successor liability for asbestos-related claims was unconstitutionally retroactive. The statute was enacted after the plaintiff filed common law negligence and product… + read more

Representing the estate of a worker who died of mesothelioma, Deborah Hankinson successfully argued to the Texas Supreme Court that a statute limiting corporate successor liability for asbestos-related claims was unconstitutionally retroactive. The statute was enacted after the plaintiff filed common law negligence and product liability claims against the defendant, a successor corporation to an asbestos manufacturer. The court held the statute’s retroactive elimination of plaintiff’s mature common law tort claims, which had a substantial basis in fact, disrupted his reasonable, settled expectations under the law. The statute was enacted to help only the defendant, and no one else. Because the legislature made no findings on any substantial public interest that the statute served, the court concluded that the public interest served by the statute was slight. Robinson v. Crown Cork & Seal Co., 335 S.W.3d 126 (Tex. 2010).

 

Court Upholds Jury Verdict of No Substantial Oil and Gas Drainage

The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s judgment on a jury verdict in favor of Deborah Hankinson’s client, Occidental Permian. The court held the evidence was legally sufficient to support the jury’s finding that substantial drainage of oil or gas from a lease did… + read more

The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s judgment on a jury verdict in favor of Deborah Hankinson’s client, Occidental Permian. The court held the evidence was legally sufficient to support the jury’s finding that substantial drainage of oil or gas from a lease did not occur. In so holding, the court relied on the testimony of two experts who found no evidence of substantial drainage and on production data that was consistent with that expected in a bottom water drive reservoir such as the lease at issue. Additionally, the court held that because the trial court reasonably could have found the testimony of an expert rebuttal witness to be unreliable, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in instructing the jury to disregard it. Finally, the court held any error in the trial court’s admission of an expert’s previously undisclosed opinion was harmless in light of the other evidence that was legally sufficient to support the verdict. Petroleum Synergy Group, Inc. v. Occidental Permian, Ltd, 331 S.W.3d 14 (Tex. App. – Amarillo 2010).

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