Fall 2023
Landmark Victory Clarifies Double Fraction Dilemma in Oil and Gas Law
The Texas Supreme Court recently clarified an issue that has been the source of extensive litigation for decades: the so-called “double fraction dilemma.” SHJ partner Marc Tabolsky successfully argued a dispute over a century-old deed containing a reservation of mineral rights that used a double fraction. The case, Van Dyke v. Navigator Group, grapples with a common issue found in legal instruments used by mineral owners in the early 20th century to either convey or reserve mineral interests.
SHJ Earns Chambers Ranking
Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business announced that SHJ was ranked as a leading law firm in the Texas Litigation: General Commercial practice area for 2023. Less than 1 percent of U.S. law firms earn this important distinction. Managing partner Andy Hicks and founding partner Adam Schiffer were also ranked among the top lawyers in the Houston market.
New Bill Streamlines Civil Litigation in Texas Court
Earlier this year, the Texas Senate passed a bill that creates a specialized business court to oversee complex civil litigation. Senior counsel Katherine Ring provides an overview of key changes implemented by the bill, which aims to streamline the resolution of high-stakes business disputes statewide.
Texas Supreme Court to Review Rejected Forced Pooling Applications
The Texas Supreme Court recently agreed to hear Ammonite Oil & Gas Corp. v. Railroad Commission of Texas and EOG Resources, which concerns a state regulator’s rejection of 16 applications submitted by Ammonite to force pool its mineral estate with adjacent wells operated by EOG under the Texas Mineral Interest Pooling Act (MIPA). Now, the court is poised to weigh in on the scope and interpretation of the MIPA. Partner Persis Dean and associate Kelly Swanson discuss potential implications.
Senior Associate Lori Arakaki on Life at a Litigation Boutique
Lori C. Arakaki joined the firm as a senior associate in March, handling complex commercial disputes before federal and state courts at both the trial and appellate levels. Previously, she practiced at Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP’s San Francisco office and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP’s Los Angeles office. We sat down with Lori to discuss her current docket, professional goals, and the firm’s growth trajectory.
Appellate Lawyer Kate Ring is "Committed to 'Paying it Forward'"
Fewer than 20% of U.S. appellate lawyers who argue high-dollar civil cases are female, according to a 2021 report from the American Bar Association. At SHJ, we’re proud to field a majority-women appellate team. Senior counsel Katherine Ring has played a key role in our appellate practice since the firm was founded in 2007. Here, Kate discusses her background, most interesting cases, and commitment to female mentorship in the profession.
Three Partners Honored by Benchmark Litigation
Adam Schiffer (Litigation Star), Adam Dinnell (Future Litigation Star), and Varant Yegparian (40 & Under List) were recognized in Benchmark Litigation‘s 2024 rankings. Winners are selected based on a rigorous research process that includes peer reviews, client feedback, and assessment of key cases.
Wrapping Up Our 2023 Summer Associate Program
SHJ’s summer associate program is geared toward students from the nation’s top law schools who are eager to gain hands-on experience in trial practice. This year, we welcomed our largest-ever class: April Alex (Duke Law), Austin Fuller (UVA Law), Matthew Hilley (WashULaw), Gabriele Josephs (UVA Law), and Karchen Lhatoo (U. Chicago Law). They provided invaluable support on a number of complex, high-stakes matters, including preparation for an upcoming trial.
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