Haynes and Boone, LLP proudly announces that Partner Laura Prather has received board certification in civil appellate law from the Texas Board of Legal Specialization (TBLS), a distinction achieved by less than one percent of lawyers in the state. She was also recently admitted to the bar of the Supreme Court of the United States.
Board certification is a voluntary designation program certifying Texas attorneys in specific areas of law. To qualify, attorneys must be licensed for at least five years, devote a certain percentage of their practice to civil appellate law, have handled all or a substantial part of at least a dozen appellate cases in the last three years, receive judicial and fellow lawyer recommendations, attend continuing education seminars, and pass a six-hour written examination.
“An attorney has to do something extra to get certified and then they have to continue to work and acquire knowledge in their specialty area to remain certified,” said Hal Moorman, chairman of the TBLS board of directors. “You could say it is a life-long commitment.”
At the firm, Prather is a member of the Litigation Practice Group, the Appellate Law Section and head of the Media Law Practice Group in the Austin office. She focuses her practice on First Amendment, Anti-SLAPP, intellectual property and media and entertainment litigation and appeals. Prather also has significant government relations experience as an advocate at the Texas Legislature on First Amendment and open government concerns.
Prather’s litigation practice is dominated by interlocutory appeals of First Amendment related issues. She is co-author of a definitive law review article on the Texas Citizens Participation Act with First Court of Appeals Justice Jane Bland, “Bullies Beware: Safeguarding Constitutional Rights Through Anti-SLAPP In Texas,” 47 Tex. Tech L. Rev. 725 (Summer 2015). Prather also led the coalitions in support of Texas’ Citizens Participation Act, Texas’ Free Flow of Information Act and Texas’ Defamation Mitigation Act.
Prather has been named by The American Lawyer as one of the 45 best young women lawyers in the nation.
Board certification is offered in 22 specific areas of law. Initial certification is valid for five years. To remain certified, attorneys and paralegals must apply for recertification and meet substantial involvement, peer review and continuing legal education requirements for their specialty area.
An attorney wishing to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States must first be admitted to the bar of the highest court of their state, must be sponsored by two attorneys already admitted to the Supreme Court bar, must pay a fee and must take either a spoken or written oath.