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Vinson & Elkins LLP

1001 FANNIN STREET, SUITE 2500, HOUSTON, TX 77002-6760, USA
Work +1 713 758 2222
Fax +1 713 758 2346
Austin, Beijing, Dallas, Dubai, Hong Kong, Houston and 10 more

James Reeder

Work +1 713 758 2202
Vinson & Elkins LLP

Work Department



Jim is co-chair of the firm's Antitrust Practice Group, and his primary practice area is antitrust and business litigation. He has extensive experience in counseling clients on antitrust matters. Although his antitrust practice extends to many industries, including the commercial aviation, energy, and entertainment industries, he also has extensive antitrust experience in the healthcare and chemical industries. He has advised clients on numerous occasions regarding claims of price-fixing, group boycott, exclusive dealing, tying, monopolization, discriminatory pricing, and conspiracy. He has also advised clients on the antitrust implications of mergers, contracting decisions, and group and discount purchasing arrangements. Jim has defended clients in litigation involving these antitrust issues as well.

Jim also has extensive experience in defending accountants and attorneys in professional liability litigation. Specifically, he has represented both major national accounting firms and smaller local and regional firms in litigation brought by clients and non-clients who claim to have been injured after having sought the benefits of the accounting firm's tax or audit services or relied upon its advice.

Jim has also handled matters and tried complex commercial litigation cases involving claims of fraud, negligent misrepresentation, RICO, breach of fiduciary duty and violations of federal and state securities laws. Jim was one of the leaders of the trial team that successfully developed the current law related to the enforcement of material adverse effect clauses in the merger context. Jim has also represented clients in internal investigations involving misappropriation of assets.


  • Member: Antitrust Section, State Bar of Texas; Antitrust Section, Houston Bar Association; American Health Lawyers Association
  • American Bar Association: Member, Antitrust Section, Health Law Section, Litigation Section (Chair, Healthcare Litigation Committee, 2004-2005; Managing Director, 2006-2007; Counsel, 2007-2010; Budget Officer, 2011-2013)
  • Founder: Law Explorer Committee, Houston Young Lawyers Association (outstanding committee chair award, 1989-1990)
  • Advisory Board: Houston Hospice and Palliative Care System; Teach for America
  • Board of Directors: The Jung Center of Houston
  • Board of Trustees: Legacy Community Health System
  • Board of Trustees: San Jacinto Museum of History Association


Jim graduated from Harvard University, A.B. with honors in 1984, and The University of Texas, J.D. with honors in 1989. Admitted to Texas Bar in 1989.

United States: Antitrust

Civil litigation/class actions: defense

Within: Civil litigation/class actions: defense

Vinson & Elkins LLP’s team, which is led by Craig Seebald (Washington DC) and James Reeder (Houston), is trusted by clients such as AirTran Airways and Phadia US for their most significant litigated antitrust matters. Recent highlights include acting for Southwest Airlines in Re Domestic Airline Travel Antitrust Litigation, which concerns an alleged conspiracy among four US airlines to restrict passenger capacity in order to drive up the price of air fares; Alden Atkins (Washington DC) led the team in this matter, which also included Jason Powers (Houston), Neil Imus (Washington DC) and John Wander (Dallas). In 2017, Seebald, Jason Levine (Washington DC) and Matthew Jacobs (San Francisco) represented Hitachi in Re Optical Disc Drive Products Antitrust Litigation.

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Merger control

Within: Merger control

Vinson & Elkins LLP’s team, which is chaired by Houston-based James Reeder and Craig Seebald in Washington DC, works closely with the firm’s corporate group to advise on all types of antitrust issues connected with transactions. Its wide-ranging workload includes HSR filings and global merger notifications, merger investigations and litigation. William Vigdor (Washington DC), Reeder, counsel Deborah Milner (Houston) and others represented Plains All American Pipeline (Plains) in an FTC investigation into the client’s agreement with Valero Energy providing for the acquisition by a Valero subsidiary of two petroleum storage facilities in Northern California owned by a subsidiary of Plains. The team also handled a subsequent related lawsuit filed by the Office of the Attorney General for the State of California seeking to block the transaction. Washington DC-based Neil Imus’ work in 2017 included assisting Select Energy Services with antitrust issues associated with its merger with Rockwater Energy Solutions. The team has also acted for clients such as MoneyGram International, Omega Protein and Concho Resources.

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