In the News

Haynes and Boone Lawyers Win Judgment Holding Texas School Finance System Is Unconstitutional

AUSTIN – State District Judge John Dietz today issued a final judgment holding the state’s school finance system unconstitutional on several grounds, giving Haynes and Boone, LLP client Texas School Coalition a groundbreaking victory in the long-running dispute over funding requirements.

All the school district plaintiff groups succeeded on their claims. Judge Dietz held that the Calhoun County ISD plaintiffs had proven that the current school finance system has evolved into an unconstitutional statewide property tax and fails to sufficiently fund Texas schools at the level required to provide a constitutionally adequate education. >>

Haynes and Boone in Law360: Royalty Ruling Boosts Energy Cos. In Permian Basin Fights

A Texas Supreme Court opinion allowing Occidental Permian Ltd. and other oil and gas producers to charge royalty owners for their share of removing carbon dioxide from natural gas is a significant win for the energy industry as enhanced recovery methods become more common, lawyers say. >>

Mark Trachtenberg in the State Column: Texas School Districts Ask Judge to Overturn Funding System

Attorneys for more than 600 school districts urged a state judge Tuesday to once again overturn the way Texas schools are funded, arguing that the legislature has not fixed what remains an unconstitutionally inadequate and unfair system. >>



Recent Publications

Texas Supreme Court Clarifies Royalty Calculations for Enhanced Oil Recovery

In French v. Occidental Permian, Ltd., No. 12-1002 (Tex. June 27, 2014), the Texas Supreme Court provided guidance on how to calculate royalties where production is obtained through an enhanced recovery technique like the injection of carbon dioxide (CO2). >>

American Bar Association's Recent Developments in Business and Corporate Litigation, Chapter 2: Appellate Practice

This chapter highlights decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court's 2012-2013 term that have particular significance for the business law community. It also discusses important business cases that were pending before the Court through the end of 2013. >>

2014 Annual Review of Developments in Business and Corporate Litigation: Appellate Practice

An update on annual developments in appellate practice presented to the American Bar Association at its 2014 spring meeting. >>

Predicting Litigation Trends in Oil & Gas

Webcast presented for the State Bar of Texas, March 4, 2014. >>



Mark Trachtenberg

Partner
Administrative Partner - Houston Office

Houston


1221 McKinney Street
Suite 2100
Houston, Texas 77010
T +1 713.547.2528
F +1 713.236.5567

Areas of Practice

Education

  • J.D., Yale Law School, 1998, Editor, Yale Law Journal
  • B.A., University of Pennsylvania, 1994, summa cum laude; Phi Beta Kappa

Bar Admissions

  • Texas

Court Admissions

  • United States Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas

Judicial Clerkships

Law Clerk, the Honorable Lee H. Rosenthal, United States District Judge for the Southern District of Texas (1998-99)
Mark Trachtenberg

Mark Trachtenberg's ability to craft a "big picture" legal strategy from the inception of litigation through the final appeal has led to his involvement in some of the most complex and high-stakes litigation in the state, including a current challenge to the Texas school finance system and an appeal of a $3.6 billion bankruptcy plan of reorganization in the Fifth Circuit. Because of his role as the architect of the successful 2005 challenge to the state's school finance system, he was profiled in the cover article of the 2010 Texas Super Lawyers magazine - Rising Stars Edition.

Mr. Trachtenberg, a Yale Law School graduate, excels at collaborating with trial counsel to win during the trial phase through dispositive motions, challenges to the opposing party's expert testimony, jury charges, trial briefs, and post-trial motions. In the appellate courts, Mr. Trachtenberg identifies, develops, and presents his clients’ most persuasive arguments.

Mr. Trachtenberg, who is board certified in civil appellate law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, has helped his clients achieve a successful resolution of their disputes in a wide range of matters, including the following representative examples:

  • Persuaded the Texas Supreme Court to strike down the Texas public school finance system on constitutional grounds. This decision was the culmination of a four and one-half year effort, including a previous successful appeal to the Supreme Court and a successful five-week bench trial upon remand.
  • Obtained reversal from the Texas Supreme Court of a $14 million products liability judgment arising out of a fire because the plaintiffs' expert's causation testimony was scientifically unreliable.
  • Persuaded the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals to dismiss, on equitable mootness grounds, the appeal of a $3.6 billion bankruptcy plan of reorganization.
  • Persuaded the San Antonio Court of Appeals (1) to affirm an approximately $50 million judgment in favor of our client, and (2) in a cross-appeal, to reinstate the jury's $7.5 million punitive damages award that the trial court had declined to incorporate into the judgment.
  • Persuaded Texas Supreme Court to reverse class certification in a suit where appellees were authorized to represent a class of hundreds of thousands of Texas-based music club members who sought recovery of the late fees they had paid on their compact disc purchases.
  • Persuaded a federal district court to vacate an arbitrator's award of punitive damages against our client.
  • Persuaded a trial court, through a motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict (JNOV), to set aside a jury's multi-million dollar verdict and enter a take nothing judgment in a real estate dispute involving claims for breach of contract, fraud and breach of partnership duties.
  • Obtained dismissal of an accelerated appeal and related petitions for writs of injunction and mandamus in oil and gas dispute.

Mr. Trachtenberg has written and spoken on a wide variety of topics, with a recent focus on arbitration issues and oil and gas law.

Mr. Trachtenberg heads the Houston office of the firm as its Administrative Partner.

Professional Recognition

  • Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization
  • Member, American Law Institute (ALI)
  • Named as a Texas Super Lawyer by Texas Monthly magazine (2013-2014)
  • Selected for inclusion in Texas Super Lawyers - Rising Stars Edition (2004-2013)
  • Named a Future Star in the 2013 and 2014 editions of Benchmark Litigation
  • Profiled in cover article of 2010 Texas Super Lawyers magazine - Rising Stars Edition
  • Named as a Top Lawyer in Houston by H Texas magazine (2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014)
  • Named a "Top Professional on the Fast Track" (2005) and a "Lawyer on the Fast Track" (2004) by H Texas magazine

Professional Leadership

  • Chair, Appellate Subcommittee of the Business and Corporate Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association's Section of Business Law
  • Officer of the Appellate Practice Section of the Houston Bar Association
  • Board member, The Houston Lawyer editorial board (2005-2011)
  • Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
  • Young Leader, United Way of Greater Houston
  • Frequent speaker at State Bar and Houston Bar Association Continuing Legal Education programs, on a variety of topics, including arbitration-related litigation, the Texas Supreme Court, school finance litigation, and oil and gas law
  • Vice Chair, Anti-Defamation League, Southwest Region
  • Special Assistant Disciplinary Counsel, Texas Commission for Lawyer Discipline

Selected Representative Experience


False Claim & OCSLA Actions Against Major Oil Company (S.Dist. Tex. 2014)
Assumed a lead role in securing a final take-nothing summary judgment in a suit seeking $266 billion and an injunction to shut down a major oil company's offshore platform under the False Claims Act and the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, based on purported misrepresentations about the platform designs.

Calhoun County ISD et al. v. Michael Williams, Commissioner of Education, et al. (250th District Court, Travis County, Texas 2014)
Represented 88 school districts in a successful challenge to the constitutionality of the Texas school finance system. Following a 16-week, two-phase trial, our clients prevailed on their claims that (1) they lacked sufficient resources to provide all of their students with a meaningful opportunity to achieve a constitutionally adequate education; and (2) the system had evolved into an unconstitutional state property tax because state laws and mandates strip districts of any meaningful discretion over the setting of their property tax rates.

Anti-Lothian Bankruptcy Fraud Committee v. Lothian Oil, Inc., 531 Fed. App'x 428 (5th Cir. 2013)
Represented a group of Chapter 11 debtors in a post-confirmation challenge to the debtors' plan of reorganization brought in New York state court. Quickly obtained a bankruptcy-court injunction of the state-court litigation, removed the matter to federal court, and obtained a transfer of venue to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Texas. Successfully prosecuted claims for more than $2 million in bankruptcy-court sanctions against plaintiffs and plaintiffs' counsel related to their violation of the bankruptcy-court injunction and obtained a complete reinstatement of the bankruptcy-court injunction and sanctions in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit following a partial reversal by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas.

Anti-Lothian Bankruptcy Fraud Committee v. Lothian Oil, Inc., 508 Fed. App'x 352 (5th Cir. 2013)
Represented a group of Chapter 11 debtors in a post-confirmation challenge to the debtors' plan of reorganization and a related claim for disgorgement of fees paid to the debtors' professionals. Successfully defended the plan and professional payments against claims of fraud and professional negligence and obtained complete appellate victories in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas and U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

TimeGate Studios, Inc. v. SouthPeak Interactive, LLC, 860 F. Supp. 2d 350 (S.D. Tex. 2012)
Persuaded a federal district court to vacate a more than $9 million arbitration award entered against a video game developer under the Federal Arbitration Act because the award violated the essence of the publishing agreement that was the subject of the parties' dispute.

Kenneth Davey v. First Command Financial Services, Inc., No. 3:11-cv-01510-G (N.D. Tex. 2012)
Persuaded federal district court to vacate all punitive damages awarded by an arbitration panel on the grounds that the arbitrators exceeded their powers.

HMC Hotel Properties II, LP v. Keystone-Texas Property Holding Corp., No. 04-10-00620-CV, 2011 WL 5869608 (Tex. App.–San Antonio Nov. 23, 2011, pet. denied)
In an appeal arising out of a commercial real estate dispute, persuaded the San Antonio Court of Appeals (1) to affirm an approximately $50 million judgment in favor of our client, and (2) in a cross-appeal, to reinstate the jury's $7.5 million punitive damages award that the trial court had declined to incorporate into the judgment. Also persuaded the Texas Supreme Court to deny HMC’s petition for review.

Grossman v. Lothian Oil Incorporated (In re Lothian Oil, Inc.), 650 F.3d. 539 (5th Cir. 2011)
In a case of first impression, persuaded the Fifth Circuit to reverse the district court's finding that a non-insider creditor's claims could not be recharacterized as equity, and instead affirm the bankruptcy court's recharacterization decision.

Minnis v. Citrin Holdings, No. 2006-78939 (133rd Dist. Ct., Harris County, Tex.)
In a real estate partnership dispute, assisted plaintiff's trial counsel with post-trial briefing and formation of judgment issues in connection with the entry of $54.6 million judgment in favor of our client.

Westergren v. National Property Holdings, L.P., No. 2008-36847 (269th Dist. Ct., Harris County, Tex.)
Argued jury charge and persuaded the trial court, through a motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict (JNOV), to set aside the jury's multi-million dollar verdict and enter a take nothing judgment in a real estate dispute involving claims for breach of contract, fraud and breach of partnership duties.

In the Matter of Asarco L.L.C., 401 Fed. App'x 914 (5th Cir. 2010)
Persuaded the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals to dismiss the appeal of a $3.6 billion bankruptcy plan of reorganization, which was challenged by a competing bidder and the company's union.

United States of America v. Hoeffner, No. 4:07-cr-00263 (S.D.-Houston Div. 2010)
Following a 15-count indictment charging him with conspiracy, mail fraud, wire fraud and money laundering, we represented a prominent lawyer, who had recovered millions of dollars for his clients in toxic tort lawsuits. The indictment alleged payment of bribes and kickbacks to two employees of an insurance company in connection with the settlements of these lawsuits. After a 6-week trial, the judge declared a mistrial when the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict. The case involved thousands of documents, more than 30 witnesses, and numerous complex motions.

Bell v. American Traffic Solutions, Inc., No. 09-10722, 2010 U.S. App. LEXIS 6001 (5th Cir. Mar. 23, 2010)
Defended red-light camera company in federal class action challenging failure to obtain Texas private investigator license, alleging negligence per se, and seeking monetary and injunctive relief. Obtained dismissal of the putative class action claim brought against the installer and operator of red light cameras based on the plaintiffs' lack of standing. Haynes and Boone's appellate team later persuaded the Fifth Circuit to affirm the dismissal.

HMC Hotel Properties II Ltd. Partnership v. Keystone-Texas Property Holding Corp., No.05-CI-14229 (166th Dist. Ct., Bexar County, Tex.)
In a commercial real estate dispute, assisted trial team with strategy, legal briefing, and preparing and arguing the jury charge in a trial that resulted in a favorable judgment of approximately $50 million.

Miga v. Jensen, No. 07-0123 (Tex. 2008)
Submitted amicus curiae brief on behalf of expert on law of remedies, urging Texas Supreme Court to reject petitioner’s position on restitution law.

Whirlpool v. Camacho, 298 S.W.3d 631 (Tex. 2009)
Obtained reversal from the Texas Supreme Court of a $14 million products liability judgment arising out of a fire because the plaintiffs’ expert’s causation testimony was scientifically unreliable. The Court held that both Texas tests for reliability – the “analytical gap” test and the Robinson-factor test – typically should be used in evaluating expert testimony, and that an expert must offer a convincing explanation for failing to test critical aspects of his theories when such testing is possible.

In re ASARCO, LLC, No. 05-CV-21207 and related adversary proceedings (Bankr. S.D. Tex.) (confirmation Nov. 13, 2009); Nos. 09-CV-177 and 07-CV-00018 (S.D. Tex.)
In a closely watched multi-billion dollar Chapter 11 restructuring of a copper mining company labeled by the district court as "one of the most successful bankruptcy proceedings in recent history," represented the debtor's parent company and worked with bankruptcy, litigation, and labor teams in contested matters, adversary proceedings, and bankruptcy appeals to the district court and Fifth Circuit. These matters included an $11 billion fraudulent transfer, fiduciary duty, conspiracy and aiding and abetting adversary proceeding; litigation of novel issues pertaining to a long-standing labor dispute and the enforceability of a collective bargaining agreement and its successorship clause; disputes regarding proposed acquisition and auction of the debtor's assets; environmental claims and asbestos liability issues; and successful confirmation of the proposed plan of reorganization by both the bankruptcy court and district court.

5436 LLC v. CBS Corp., Civ. A. No. H-08-3097 (S.D. Tex. Feb. 19, 2009)
Persuaded a federal district court to deny a defendant’s motion to dismiss CERCLA claims for lack of subject matter jurisdiction or to compel arbitration.

Kaiser-Francis Oil Co. v. State of Oklahoma ex rel. Commissioners of the Land Office, 294 Fed. Appx. 900 (5th Cir. 2008)
Persuaded Fifth Circuit to affirm bankruptcy court's dismissal of adversary proceeding, in which we successfully established that our client's oil and gas claims had not been discharged through a prior bankruptcy plan.

Citigroup Global Markets, Inc. v. Brown, 261 S.W.3d 394 (Tex. App.–Houston [14th Dist.] 2008, orig. proceeding)
In a consolidated appeal and original proceeding, obtained a writ of mandamus directing the trial court to compel the arbitration of claims against a brokerage firm in the face of plaintiffs’ mental incapacity defense.

H&M Oil & Gas L.L.C. v. Brazos 440 Partners, L.P., 386 B.R. 631 (W.D.Tex. 2008)
Successfully obtained dismissal of a creditor's bankruptcy appeal on standing and mootness grounds.

Neeley v. West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District, 228 S.W.3d 864 (Tex. App. - Austin 2007, pet. denied)
Upheld on appeal a multi-million dollar award of attorneys’ fees in a school finance case, in the face of the State’s Declaratory Judgment Act challenges.

Broesche v. Jacobson, 218 S.W.3d 267 (Tex. App. - Houston [14th Dist.] 2007, pet. denied)
Successfully defended on appeal a summary judgment, sanctions order, and fee award for an interpleading party in a dispute over the interpretation of a divorce decree.

In re Schoelpple, 14-06-01038-CV, 2007 WL 431877 (Tex. App. - Houston [14th Dist.] Feb. 8, 2007, orig. proceeding) (mem. op.)
Successfully defended a challenge by mandamus to an order granting a grandparent access to his four-year old grandchild; in a rare departure from the customary summary denial, the court of appeals issued a five-page memorandum opinion denying the petition and affirming the grandparent’s right of access.

Brooks v. Chevron USA Inc., No. 13-05-00029-CV, 2006 WL 1431227 (Tex. App. - Corpus Christi May 25, 2006, pet. denied) (mem. op.)
Successfully defended a major energy company in a case alleging environmental contamination of a residential neighborhood, and successfully defended the trial court's dismissal order on appeal.

Jones v. Brass, No. 99-01743 (113th Dist. Ct., Harris County, Tex.)
Obtained reinstatement of the plaintiff’s claims following an adverse summary judgment, won summary judgment for the plaintiff dismissing one defendant’s counterclaims, successfully defeated an interlocutory appeal by two out-of-state defendants of the trial court’s denial of their special appearance, and ultimately achieved a very favorable settlement for the plaintiff in a breach of a commercial contract, fraudulent transfer and conspiracy case.

Pintail Production Co. v. Osprey Petroleum Co., Nos. 13-06-069-CV, 13-06-151-CV, 2006 WL 1030150 (Tex. App. - Corpus Christi Apr. 20, 2006, no pet.) (mem. op.)
In an oil and gas dispute, obtained dismissal of an accelerated appeal and a related petition for writs of injunction and mandamus.

Harvest House Publishers v. The Local Church, 190 S.W.3d 204 (Tex. App. - Houston [1st Dist.] 2006, pet. denied)
In an interlocutory appeal following the trial court’s denial of summary judgment, obtained rendition of a take-nothing judgment for a media defendant in a defamation case.

Neeley v. West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District, 176 S.W.3d 746 (Tex. 2005)
Persuaded the Texas Supreme Court to strike down the Texas public school finance system on constitutional grounds; this decision was the culmination of a four- and-a-half year effort, including a previous successful appeal to the Texas Supreme Court and a successful five-week bench trial.

BMG Direct Marketing, Inc. v. Peake, 178 S.W.3d 763 (Tex. 2005)
Won reversal of an order that certified a class of hundreds of thousands of Texas-based music club members who sought recovery of late fees paid on their compact disc purchases.

Trigeant Holdings, Ltd. v. Jones, 183 S.W.3d 717 (Tex. App. - Houston [1st Dist.] 2005, pet. denied)
Successfully defended two out-of-state entities’ interlocutory appeal of the denial of their special appearances by persuading the court of appeals that the entities committed acts in Texas for which they were potentially liable under the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act.

Schott Glas v. Adame, 178 S.W.3d 307 (Tex. App. - Houston [14th Dist.] 2005, pet. denied)
Obtained reversal of an order denying a special appearance resulting in the dismissal of an action brought by thousands of plaintiffs against a major German manufacturer.

National Collegiate Athletic Association v. Yeo, 171 S.W.3d 863 (Tex. 2005)
In a case involving a collegiate athlete’s eligibility to participate in a swimming competition, persuaded the Texas Supreme Court to expressly disapprove of the lower courts’ conclusion that the NCAA had no right to intervene in the litigation; the opinion significantly strengthened the NCAA’s hand in ensuring that its interests and the interests of its member-institutions are protected in athlete eligibility litigation across the country.

Tribble & Stephens Co. v. RGM Constructors, LP, 154 S.W.3d 639 (Tex. App. - Houston [14th Dist.] 2004, pet. denied)
Obtained reversal of a summary judgment in dispute over interpretation of a construction contract.

United States ex rel Graves v. ITT Educational Services, Inc., 111 Fed. Appx. 296 (5th Cir. 2004)
Successfully defended on appeal a district court’s dismissal of a case raising novel issues of law under the False Claims Act.

Rodgers v. Commission for Lawyer Discipline, 151 S.W.3d 602 (Tex. App. - Fort Worth 2004, pet. denied)
Acting as Special Assistant Disciplinary Counsel for the State Bar of Texas, successfully defended on appeal a judgment sanctioning an attorney for a violation of lawyer advertising rules.

Kubala Public Adjusters, Inc. v. Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee for Supreme Court of Texas, 133 S.W.3d 790 (Tex. App. - Texarkana 2004, no pet.)
Acting on behalf of the State Bar of Texas, successfully defended against an appellate challenge to an injunction entered against public insurance adjusters, prohibiting the adjusters from conducting certain business activities found to constitute the unauthorized practice of law.

West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District v. Alanis, 107 S.W.3d 558 (Tex. 2003)
Obtained a ruling reinstating a constitutional challenge to Texas’ public school finance system, following the lower courts’ dismissal of the case on ripeness grounds.

Reversal of Class Certification Order Against Major National Retailer
Won reversal of a class certification order that certified a class of 350,000 employees against major national retailer.

Montgomery v. O’Quinn, No. 99-47502, (189th Dist. Ct., Harris County, Tex.)
In a breach of contract suit seeking $120 million in damages against an attorney and law firm, assisted trial counsel in formulating trial strategy, took responsibility for all law matters, filed and argued numerous pre-trial motions (including summary judgment motions, motions concerning privilege, and other discovery matters), and prepared the jury charge.

United States ex rel. Abbott v. BP P.L.C., BP America, Inc., BP Exploration and Production, Inc.
Representation of BP in United States ex rel. Abbott v. BP P.L.C., BP America, Inc., BP Exploration and Production, Inc. (S.D. Tex.), a False Claims Act qui tam suit involving allegations of false certifications of compliance with regulations governing defendants’ offshore oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico.

Online Publications

07/02/2014 - Texas Supreme Court Clarifies Royalty Calculations for Enhanced Oil Recovery
In French v. Occidental Permian, Ltd., No. 12-1002 (Tex. June 27, 2014), the Texas Supreme Court provided guidance on how to calculate royalties where production is obtained through an enhanced recovery technique like the injection of carbon dioxide (CO2).

06/05/2014 - Challenging Arbitration Awards
Your client has been hit with a large adverse arbitration award, and calls you, his trusty appellate lawyer, to help him out of his predicament.

04/15/2014 - American Bar Association's Recent Developments in Business and Corporate Litigation, Chapter 2: Appellate Practice
This chapter highlights decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court's 2012-2013 term that have particular significance for the business law community. It also discusses important business cases that were pending before the Court through the end of 2013.

04/10/2014 - 2014 Annual Review of Developments in Business and Corporate Litigation: Appellate Practice
An update on annual developments in appellate practice presented to the American Bar Association at its 2014 spring meeting.

03/04/2014 - Predicting Litigation Trends in Oil & Gas
Webcast presented for the State Bar of Texas, March 4, 2014.

07/09/2013 - The United States Supreme Court Further Cements the Enforceability of Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements
Recently, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant, a third opinion in what is now a trilogy of cases upholding the validity of class action waiver clauses in contracts containing arbitration agreements.

07/11/2012 - Arbitration-Related Litigation in Texas
Congress intended for arbitration to be a faster, less expensive alternative to litigation. Businesses frequently include arbitration clauses in their contracts in an attempt to avoid the time and costs associated with the traditional court system.

05/23/2012 - Fifth Circuit: Class Arbitration Proceedings Available Only with the Parties’ Consent
On May 18, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held in Reed v. Florida Metropolitan University, Inc. that class actions are available in arbitration proceedings only if there is a contractual basis for finding that the parties agreed to class arbitration.

08/25/2011 - Arbitration-Related Litigation in Texas
Congress intended for arbitration to be a faster, less expensive alternative to litigation. Businesses frequently include arbitration clauses in their contracts in an attempt to avoid the time and costs associated with the traditional court system.

05/03/2011 - U.S. Supreme Court Ruling Paves the Way for Companies to Enforce Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements
On April 27, 2011, the United States Supreme Court issued a decision in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion that ensures that companies will be able to enforce well-drafted class action waiver clauses in consumer contracts containing arbitration agreements – rejecting lower court decisions finding such waiver clauses to be unconscionable. Specifically, the Court held that the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) preempts a California rule that held class action waivers in consumer arbitration agreements to be unconscionable and therefore unenforceable.

04/05/2011 - American Bar Association Annual Review of Litigation, Chapter 3: Appellate Practice
This chapter discusses, by topic, the Supreme Court’s business-related jurisprudence from the 2009-10 term, the key cases impacting the business community pending before the Court through the end of 2010, and existing circuit splits that may provoke Supreme Court resolution in short order.

10/13/2010 - Trachtenberg and Crozier Article Mentioned in "Disputing: Conversations about Dispute Resolution" Blog
Mark Trachtenberg and Christina Crozier's article “Arbitration-Related Litigation in Texas,” (29 Corporate Counsel Rev. 1 (2010)), was mentioned in the blog called Disputing: Conversations about Dispute Resolution on KarlBayer.com.

08/15/2010 - Arbitration-Related Litigation in Texas
Congress intended for arbitration to be a faster, less expensive alternative to litigation. Businesses frequently include arbitration clauses in their contracts in an attempt to avoid the time and costs associated with the traditional court system. But judging from the steady stream of arbitration-related decisions emanating from state and federal courts in recent years, even the most “air-tight” arbitration clause cannot guarantee that disputes will be resolved without judicial intervention.

08/08/2010 - Significant 2009-10 “Arbitrability” Cases in Federal Appellate Courts
This paper summarizes the “arbitrability” cases decided by the United States Supreme Court in the 2009-10 term, as well as the significant federal courts of appeals cases decided between January 2009 and June 2010, when this paper went to press.

07/17/2009 - Drop the Lifetime Tenure for Justices on High Court
Houston Chronicle
Wouldn't it be nice if the words “Supreme Court confirmation hearings” weren't so often found in the same sentence as “circus”? The Sotomayor hearings are hardly changing the situation. A big-top atmosphere pervades the hearings, even though the outcome is virtually assured.

12/01/2008 - Failure to List Claim in Bankruptcy Schedule Does Not Require Dismissal of Claim Under Judicial Estoppel Doctrine
The Fifth Circuit recently elaborated on the scope of the judicial estoppel doctrine when a debtor fails to list an affirmative claim for damages in its bankruptcy schedule. In Kane v. National Union Fire Ins. Co., 535 F.3d 380 (5th Cir. 2008), Chapter 7 debtors, Stuart and Lisa Kane, brought a pre-petition personal injury action for injuries arising from an auto accident, but failed to list the lawsuit in their bankruptcy schedules. After the bankruptcy court granted the Kanes a no-argument discharge, the personal injury defendants moved for summary judgment on the Kanes’ claims, arguing that the Kanes should be judicially estopped from pursuing their lawsuit on account of their failure to list it as an asset in the bankruptcy proceedings.

10/16/2008 - Trial Court Arbitrability Decisions
Hot Topics for Trial Lawyers, The Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas

08/01/2008 - How to Bust or Follow Through With an Arbitration
Advanced Civil Trial Course, State Bar of Texas, August/September 2008

07/15/2008 - Analysis of Records Hold Issues and Case Law on the Duty to Preserve Data
This memorandum provides an overview of the current state of the law regarding the duty to preserve documents and data.

03/14/2008 - Compelling Arbitration in the Trial Court
State Bar of Texas Litigation Section

01/14/2008 - Things to Consider Before Filing a Petition to Vacate an Arbitration Award
State Bar of Texas Litigation Section

10/17/2007 - The Intersection Between Arbitration and Litigation in Texas
State Bar of Texas 30th Annual Advanced Civil Trial Course, Chapter 7, Fall 2007

10/16/2006 - Risky Business: Altering the Scope of Judicial Review of Arbitration Awards by Contract
As published in Texas Bar Journal, October 2006

09/08/2006 - Arbitration-Related Litigation and Appeals

08/28/2006 - "Texas Supreme Court Update," State Bar College Summer School (July 2005)

08/28/2006 - "The Class Action Fairness Act of 2005: The Federalization of Class Actions"
The Appellate Advocate, Vol. 17, No. 4 (Spring 2005)

11/28/2005 - Analysis of Texas Supreme Court’s opinion in Neeley et al. v. West Orange-Cove et al.

10/05/2005 - Analysis of Records Hold Issues and Case Law on the Duty to Preserve Data
This memorandum provides an overview of the current state of the law regarding the duty to preserve documents and data.

01/01/2005 - Texas School Finance Litigation: Past, Present and Future
Lecture before the Barbara Jordan/Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs, the Thurgood Marshall School of Law and the College of Education at Texas Southern University, January 2005

01/01/2003 - "The Texas Supreme Court Continues to Tighten the Noose on Class Actions"
Texas Bar Journal, Vol. 66, No. 1 (January 2003)