Firm Profile > Baker Botts L.L.P. > Houston, United States

Baker Botts L.L.P.
TEXAS 77002-4995
United States

Energy litigation: oil and gas Tier 1

Experienced in handling royalty disputes, lease disputes and commercial litigation, Baker Botts L.L.P. has a truly full-service practice covering all three streams of the oil and gas sector. The firm's ability is reflected in the variety of its client list, which includes the likes of Chevron Corporation, ConocoPhillips and Shell. William Kroger is the head of the energy litigation team, which won a major case for Murphy at the Texas Supreme Court hinging on the interpretation of an offset well clause in the context of horizontal drilling; the court recognized significant differences between horizontal and vertical drilling and decided that Murphy drilled in the appropriate location according to the lease; Macey Reasoner Stokes and Jason Newman led on this matter. Elsewhere, Aaron Streett and others are defending Southwestern Energy in a royalty class action in which the plaintiffs allege they suffered $200m in damages; the case involves the question of whether an oil and gas operator may deduct market-rate fees for services provided by its subsidiaries. Russell Lewis, a commercial litigation and enforcement specialist, is also recommended. Meghan McElvy and Louie Layrisson were both promoted to the partnership in January 2018. Named attorneys are based in Houston.

Energy: transactions: oil and gas Tier 1

The team at Baker Botts L.L.P. has 'deep knowledge and relevant industry experience' across the full range of upstream, midstream and downstream oil and gas work. Key figures in the practice group include Jason Bennett, who co-heads the global projects department from the Houston office, Mike Bengston, who chairs the firm-wide corporate department in New York, and Steven Miles, who leads the LNG practice from Washington DC. Active clients include BP, Tellurian and Chesapeake Energy Corporation. Having recently been promoted to partner, Erin Hopkins represented BHP in its binding agreements for the sale of its entire interests in the Eagle Ford, Haynesville, Permian and Fayetteville onshore US oil and gas assets for a combined base consideration of $10.8bn as part of BHP’s publicly-announced desire to exit the US shale oil and gas business. Houston-based Scott Looper was also promoted to partner. Additionally, the firm saw a number of personnel changes in 2018. New York-based Michael Rosenwasser, Michael Swidler and Adorys Velazquez, and Washington DC-based Catherine Gallagher joined the team from Vinson & Elkins LLP, and Craig Vogelsang and Justin Hoffman joined the Houston office from Winston & Strawn LLP and Kirkland & Ellis LLP, respectively. Hugh Tucker, Coleson Bruce and Jeremy Kennedy left for Shearman & Sterling LLP.

Cartel Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P. services a stellar client base that includes names such as Ingevity, Merck and Novartis. The team is jointly led by John Taladay and Stephen Weissman in Washington DC and Catriona Hatton, who splits her time between Brussels and London. Among recent work, it recently obtained a significant victory on behalf of a group of airlines and the International Air Transport Association in their case against GE and a leading aircraft engine manufacturer before the European Commission alleging anticompetitive practices in the sector. In other highlights, Weissman acted for a global pharmaceutical company in an investigation into an alleged horizontal price-fixing scheme among drug manufacturers led by the Brazilian antitrust regulator, and Washington DC partners Joseph Ostoyich and William Lavery continue to advise Patterson Companies on a suit filed by the FTC claiming that the client and two competitors in the dental equipment industry conspired to boycott group purchasing organizations and refuse to discount. Mark Botti and Anthony Swisher recently joined the Washington DC office from Squire Patton Boggs, and Peter Huston arrived from the DOJ to strengthen the firm's San Francisco office.

Civil litigation/class actions: defense Tier 2

Servicing a stellar client base including some of the world's largest conglomerates, Baker Botts L.L.P. 's global antitrust team is jointly led by John TaladayStephen Weissman and Catriona Hatton . Irico Group appointed the team to advise on major price-fixing litigation brought by a class of direct purchasers, and Joseph Ostoyich teamed up with William Lavery to represent Patterson Companies in a suit filed by the FTC alleging Patterson and two of its competitors conspired to boycott dental group purchasing organizations and to coordinate pricing policies. Mark Botti and Anthony Swisher recently joined the practice from Squire Patton Boggs. Other key clients include AT&T, UnitedHealthcare, Ericsson and Royal Philips. Named attorneys are based in Washington DD, except Hatton, who is based in Brussels.

Energy regulation: conventional power Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P.'s energy regulatory practice regularly assists clients before FERC, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT). Rate design and tariff disputes, appellate advocacy, regulatory assistance on transactions and obtaining approvals for transmission generation and development are some core areas of focus. Jay Ryan (DC) and Jim Barkley (Houston) are the heads of the team. Highlights included advising the MISO Transmission Owners on the development of cost-allocation and cost-recovery mechanisms for targeted market efficiency projects on the MISO-PJM transmission seam. Brooksany Barrowes, who led on this matter, departed for Kirkland & Ellis LLP in February 2019. A group guided by Ryan assists ITC Holdings with the development and licensing of the Big Chino Valley pumped storage project. Having successfully obtained a preliminary permit and various FERC approvals, the group is currently advising the client on FERC licensing and US Army Corps permitting requirements. DC-based special counsel Emil Barth is also recommended. CenterPoint Energy and Vectren Corporation are other notable clients.

Energy regulation: oil and gas Tier 2

Providing regulatory counsel, assisting with the permitting of regulated facilities, representation in rate cases and negotiating commercial agreements are some key activities for the energy regulatory group at Baker Botts L.L.P. Washington DC-based Jay Ryan and Houston-based Jim Barkley are the heads of the team. In an ongoing highlight, Barkley and others are representing West Texas LPG Pipeline in complaint proceedings at the Texas Railroad Commission in which several shippers (including Enbridge and ConocoPhillips) allege that the client's 2015 rate increases were illegal since they were determined according to a market-based methodology. Elsewhere, New York-based Mike Bengtson and others are assisting EQT with the regulatory aspects of the development and construction of its $3.85bn Mountain Valley Pipelines project in Virginia. This 72-mile-long interstate natural gas pipeline will provide transmission capacity to the Mid-Atlantic and South-Atlantic regions of the US. The 'outstanding' New York-based Michael Rosenwasser is 'the go-to lawyer in the MLP space'; Gregory Wagner departed for Venable LLP in December 2018.

Energy: renewable/alternative power Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s global projects and renewable and clean energy department is jointly led by New York-based Michael Didriksen and Houston-based Elaine Walsh. Didriksen assisted The AES Corporation with the negotiation of a joint venture agreement with Siemens for the worldwide commercialization of battery-based energy storage systems, and Walsh is advising a private equity firm on its potential acquisition of certain solar assets. The firm has also been strengthened by a number of recent arrivals. San Francisco-based Jeffrey Kayes and New York-based Adam Griffin, both of whom joined the team from Morrison & Foerster LLP, acted for Hannon Armstrong Sustainable Infrastructure in connection with a $110m mezzanine loan for additional financing for 13 portfolios of residential solar assets. Additionally, special counsel Martin Menski joined the Washington DC office from Clifford Chance.

Energy: transactions: conventional power Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s power, utilities, and renewables department is jointly headed by Washington DC-based Elaine Walsh and New York-based Michael Didriksen, who together with New York-based William Lamb advise on utility-sector M&A, capital markets transactions, bankruptcy and restructuring, asset auctions and trading mandates, and project development and finance transactions. Key clients include AES Corporation, NRG Energy, Southern Power and Vectren Corporation, the last of which the team advised on its $6bn merger with CenterPoint Energy. 2018 also brought a number of new arrivals, including San Francisco-based Jeff Kayes and Navi Dhillon, and New York-based Adam Griffin, all of whom joined from Morrison & Foerster LLP.

Environment: regulatory Tier 2

Smart’, ‘responsive’, ‘well-connected’, and ‘customer-focused’, the team at Baker Botts L.L.P. assists big-name clients with matters relating to air and water contamination, wildlife, waste, Superfund and other contaminated sites, in the areas of energy, defense, chemicals, infrastructure, manufacturing, and utilities. Of recent note, the team represented EDF Renewable Energy before the California Department of Fish and Wildlife in relation to permits for its Valentine Solar Project, located on approximately 1,260 acres of private land in the Mojave Desert; that matter was led in San Francisco by Chris Carr. Contacts in Houston include Matt Kuryla and practice chair Scott Janoe. In Austin, Jennifer Keane stands out for her air regulatory expertise, and special counsel Paulina Williams is another name to note. Also recommended are Megan Berge and Bill Bumpers in Washington DC.

International arbitration Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P. undertakes a range of work related to investor-state disputes and commercial arbitration, and is commended for 'delivering realistic, honest and tailored assessments to meet the client's needs'. As the 'go-to counsel on energy-related disputes', the firm's roster of clients include Newco, Brazil Invest and Chevron Cooperation. The team successfully acted for Cobalt in two separate arbitration matters which included a $175m ICC arbitration; both cases were led by Houston-based co-chair Michael Goldberg, who is noted for his 'clear, persuasive and compelling oral arguments'. Washington DC-based Ryan Bull represented Compass Risk Management Limited in an ICC arbitration in the US courts. Key figures include Jennifer SmithAndrew Behrman, and Edward Schorr in New York, and department co-chair and litigation practice head Jay Alexander, who divides time between London and Washington DC.

Merger control Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P.'s antitrust practice 'is backed by a strong team' and is 'great at delivering highly responsive advice'. Stephen Weissman 'excels at providing professional judgment' and 'is unafraid to take a stand even in tight situations'; he jointly leads the US practice with John Taladay. One client praises Joseph Ostoyich as 'one of the best antitrust counselors'. In a recent highlight, he acted for Ingevity in its acquisition of Georgia Pacific's Pine Chemicals business. Weissman advised Indorama alongside 'solid junior partnerMichael Perry on the antitrust aspects of its joint venture with Alpek and Far Eastern Investment to acquire out of bankruptcy the plastics manufacturing assets of M&G Chemicals. Also notable are Paul Cuomo, who assisted clients such as Liberty Media and RealPage, and Mark Botti and Anthony Swisher, who recently arrived from Squire Patton Boggs. All named individuals are based in Washington DC.

Patents: licensing Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P. impresses with its 'great licensing acumen, negotiation skills and stamina'. Technology and life sciences-related licensing work accounts for the bulk of the recent highlights, but the group also fields a strong practice for universities. Recent standout instructions include assisting Telesat with joint development, licensing and manufacturing agreements for a low-earth orbit satellite constellation, which included a collaboration agreement between Telesat and Airbus and a development agreement between Telesat, Thales Alenia Space and Maxar. Additionally, the team advised Columbia University on the development and management of its worldwide patent portfolio covering physical and life sciences technologies, including counselling regarding standard-essential patents and related group licensing of patents. Practice head Barton Showalter, deputy practice head Christa Brown-Sanford, both in Dallas, and New York's Paul Ragusa are names to note.

Patents: prosecution (including re-examination and post-grant proceedings) Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P. 'has all the angles covered: technical expertise, tactical expertise, and courtroom expertise'. 'Able to adjust perfectly to the varying experience of inventors', the practice boasts wide-ranging sector expertise, with the technology and electronics sectors accounting for the majority of recent standout matters. In one example, New York duo Robert Meier and Robert Scheinfeld acted for Hitachi in the prosecution of a portfolio of over 1,000 diverse patents, including patents covering consumer electronics, semiconductors and optical systems. New York-based Paul Ragusa, who is 'easy to work with' and has 'a no nonsense approach', led advice for Columbia University on the development and management of its patent portfolio in the physical and life sciences sectors, including patents ranging from audio-visual compression and transmission to biotechnical patents, semiconductor patents and pharmaceutical patents. Scheinfeld and Palo Alto 'star' Eliot Williams ('terrific in the courtroom') joined forces to represent Mastercard in several matters including the successful defense of the client in an appeal at the Federal Circuit following a covered business review proceeding initiated by Leon Stambler regarding a patent covering electronic funds using using cryptographic security. Demonstrating its strength in IPRs, the team secured four victories for Bright House Networks regarding telephone and internet networking patents in the context of district court litigation brought forward by Patent Asset Licensing. Sarah Guske and Wayne Stacy in San Francisco, Hogene Choi and Travis Thomas in Palo Alto, Washington DC-based Luke Pedersen and Steve Lendaris in New York are also noted. Barton Showalter directs the practice from the Dallas office, and Michael Sartori joined the team from Venable LLP. Other clients include Cisco, Brother Industries and Halliburton.

Product liability, mass tort and class actions: toxic tort - defense Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s product liability, mass tort and toxic tort litigation group is regularly involved in wrongful death, personal injury, and Proposition 65 claims arising from environmental tort, water contamination, air pollution, chemical products and chemical exposure. Jointly led by Tynan Buthod in Houston, and Joshua Frank and Kent Mayo in Washington DC, the practice is noted for ‘working to understand the client's needs before moving forward to determine an action plan’. Buthod represented LyondellBasell alongside Houston-based Macey Stokes in a wrongful death claim alleging that a truck driver who died from acute myelogenous leukemia was exposed to harmful quantities of aromatic hydrocarbons. Further, the team defended Ergon Asphalt & Emulsions in class actions filed after an alleged backflow event resulted in a four-day water use ban in the City of Corpus Christi, and was also instructed by Assertio Therapeutics in the nationwide opioid litigation. Louie Layrisson was promoted to partner in January 2018 in the Houston office.

Technology transactions Tier 2

Baker Botts L.L.P. is instructed by clients from the automotive, telecoms and pharmaceutical industries, which it advises on joint venture and M&A-related technology transactions, development agreements and licensing contracts. Houston-based Felix Philips acted for AT&T in a $1.1bn agreement to sell its data center co-location operations and assets to Brookfield Infrastructure, and Dallas-based practice head Samantha Hale Crispin advised Toyota Motor North America on multiple joint venture agreements with Shell Oil Products and Kenworth to develop hydrogen fuel cell technologies. Other highlights include assisting long-standing client Cisco Systems with patent management and technology licensing agreements as well as with product development. San Francisco-based special counsel Tai Hsia joined the team in June 2018.

US taxes: contentious Tier 2

Houston-based Baker Botts L.L.P. has a particular focus on the energy and natural resources sectors, as well as a strong presence in estate tax disputes and state and local tax matters. Group lead Richard Husseini continues to represent MoneyGram in the US Tax Court in a dispute over whether the company constitutes a bank for federal income tax purposes. Renn Neilson and Paul Elliot in Houston worked with Evan Young in Austin to secure a Texas Supreme Court victory on behalf of Archrock Incorporated, when the justices reversed Texas's 14th Court of Appeals and affirmed as constitutional the framework of a state tax law used to value heavy equipment inventory. Other key names are Keri Brown and John Porter. Jeff Munk departed in 2018 to set up his own private practice and work as an adviser to Cellphire.

Capital markets: debt Tier 3

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s signature strength in energy law complements the firm's specialized debt securities capability, which brings to bear robust experience in representing master limited partnerships and oilfield services companies. Led from Houston by Joshua Davidson, the capital markets group also benefits from an increasingly prominent New York platform. In a significant boost to its national coverage, the firm hired a four-partner team from Vinson & Elkins LLP, which included Michael Rosenwasser, Adorys Velazquez and Michael Swidler in New York and Washington DC-based Catherine Gallagher. The Houston office was also bolstered by the hire of Justin Hoffman from Kirkland & Ellis LLP. In a recent example of its industry sweet spot, Davidson and Austin-based Mollie Duckworth advised EQT Midstream Partners on a $2.5bn notes offering. The ‘pro-business team’ also garners strong praise for its ‘very strong underwriter-side practice’, which recently saw Houston-based John Geddes’ advise the underwriters on Sysco’s $1bn notes offering.

Capital markets: equity offerings Tier 3

A specialist player in the energy area’, Baker Botts L.L.P. also houses complementary niche expertise in master limited partnerships and transportation matters. The ‘thoughtful and problem-solving team’ is led from Houston by MLP expert Joshua Davidson, who is ‘unparalleled in his responsiveness and attention to detail’; he and Austin-based Mollie Duckworth advised Shell Midstream Partners on both a public offering and a private placement totaling approximately $900m. Jason Rocha, also in Houston, is highlighted for his ‘commitment to truly partnering with the client to maximize value on each capital markets transaction’. Rocha recently assisted Kimbell Royalty Partners with its $110m private placement of convertible preferred units. On the manager front, Davidson advised the underwriters on Liberty Oilfield Services’ $194.4m IPO. Houston-based Sarah Dodson is also noted as an ‘exceptionally gifted associate with a unique ability to synthesize difficult legal concepts’. In 2018, the firm hired a four-partner team from Vinson & Elkins LLP, comprising Michael Rosenwasser, Adorys Velazquez and Michael Swidler in New York and Washington DC-based Catherine Gallagher. It also added Justin Hoffman, formerly at Kirkland & Ellis LLP, to its Houston office.

Capital markets: high-yield debt offerings Tier 3

The ‘extremely responsive’ group at Baker Botts L.L.P. distinguishes itself by its ‘great attention to detail’ and ‘strong focus on the energy industry’. The increasingly prominent group, which strikes a good balance between issuer and underwriter-side mandates, was bolstered in 2018 by the hire of Justin Hoffman, who joined in Houston from Kirkland & Ellis LLP. Recent bank-side work included Washington DC-based Catherine Gallagher advising the initial purchasers on Teekay Offshore Partners’ $700m private placement of high-yield notes. On the issuer side, Dallas-based Preston Bernhisel advised Clearway Energy Operating on a $600m notes offering, while Austin’s Mollie Duckworth advised Tallgrass Energy Partners on a $500m high-yield debt offering. The group has also recently advised Jones Energy Holdings, Chesapeake Energy and LGI Homes on high-yield offerings. Also recommended is Houston-based Joshua Davidson, who heads up the capital markets group, ‘excels at achieving favorable results for his clients’.

Construction (including construction litigation) Tier 3

Baker Botts L.L.P.'s construction practice is largely based in New York where Stuart Solsky heads the team, although a significant portion of the work is centered in Texas. In recent work, Solsky advised Alaska Gasline Development Corporation on contracts relating to the development and financing of a gas treatment plant, pipeline and a liquefaction plant, totaling $43bn. Houston-based partner Joseph Colagiovanni advised Hines on the construction and design agreements for a $1bn commercial office tower development in Boston. Senior associate Daniel Kruger, who is also based in Houston, is experienced in EPC contracts and regularly advises developers and owners of power generating facilities across the US. AES Corporation is also a client.

Energy litigation: conventional power Tier 3

A major success for Baker Botts L.L.P.'s Houston-based energy litigation department was its defense of a major electricity and natural gas utility in a gross negligence lawsuit arising from a fire that destroyed the plaintiff's house; the work was led by Jason Newman. The firm's energy litigators regularly collaborate with its energy regulatory lawyers in contentious regulatory cases. For instance, Jim Barkley and others are acting for Murphy Oil in a petition for a declaratory order at the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT); the client seeks recognition that two oil and gas fields in the Eagle Ford Shale are entitled to electric services from the utility of its choice. Kevin JacobsJohn Anaipakos and Brooke McNabb are recommended, respectively, for their expertise in contentious matters pertaining to nuclear power plants, crisis management and personal injury. The team is headed by Bill Kroger.

Environment: litigation Tier 3

Baker Botts L.L.P. has longstanding experience representing clients in environmental litigation relating to air, water, toxic substances, waste, and contaminated sites. In Houston, Scott Janoe chairs the team, which has continued to act as lead counsel for Hess, Marathon Oil and Repsol in lawsuits brought against the companies by several counties and municipalities alleging climate change liability. Megan Berge in Washington DC and Chris Carr in San Francisco are also working on the case. It also continues to represent Ergon Asphalt & Emulsions in the governmental enforcement defence and private party litigation in relation to an alleged back-flow incident that resulted in the City of Corpus Christi implementing a water use ban for four days in December 2016. Washington DC-based Kent Mayo and Joshua Frank are other names to note.

International tax Tier 3

At Baker Botts L.L.P., Houston-based Richard Husseini and Derek Green are praised for their 'excellent leadership'. The practice is noted for its strength in energy and technology, where it often advises on cross-border transactions.  Green was part of a firmwide team advising McDermott International on its merger with Chicago Bridge & Iron Company, valued at $6bn; John Lobb and Rob Fowler also worked on the matter. Don Lonczak in Washington DC was part of a firmwide team advising AT&T Corp, a subsidiary of AT&T, Inc, on its sale of data center co-location operations and assets to Brookfield Infrastructure for $1.1bn; Eric Winwood in Dallas also worked on this matter.

M&A litigation: defense Tier 3

At Baker Botts L.L.P., which climbs the ranking this year, the practice is 'focused, professional, responsive and results-oriented'. It is led from Houston by Danny David, who is 'unwavering in his dedication to his clients, walking them through every step of the process and achieving good results'. 'I cannot overemphasize how thoughtful, collaborative and effective he has been; he is pleasant, articulate, highly intelligent and a tremendous advocate', according to one client. Also in Houston, former chair of the firmwide litigation practice David Sterling is also recommended. The pair worked together on class and derivative actions arising from the $14bn sale of Westar to Great Plains Energy in which shareholders allege a breach of fiduciary duty by the board of Westar because it did not seek the best possible price, agreed to unreasonable deal protection devices, and did not adequately disclose the terms of the transaction. Sterling and San Francisco-based Jonathan Shapiro also acted for solar energy company 8Point3 Energy in defeating a consolidated class action challenging the proposed merger with affiliates of Capital Dynamics.

Securities litigation - defense Tier 3

The practice at Baker Botts L.L.P., which climbs the ranking this year, operates out of its Houston, Dallas and New York offices, and clients remark that it is 'focused, professional and results-oriented'. Danny David, who is 'articulate, thoughtful, resourceful and determined, achieving great results', leads the practice from Houston. 'He is first class in every way', remarks a client. The firm has roles in some of the largest, most complex and closely watched securities class actions, and has an outstanding track record in securities enforcement actions brought by the SEC, DOJ and FINRA. Its recent work for industrial, energy, pharmaceutical and technology companies includes a 10b5 case for Chicago Bridge & Iron that alleges false and misleading statements regarding the status of contracts to complete construction of nuclear power plants. David Sterling in Houston is the key partner in that matter. Also recommended are Houston-based Rebeca Huddle and Dallas-based Jessica Pulliam.

Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense Tier 4

Andrew Lankler in New York chairs the 'results-oriented' team at Baker Botts L.L.P., which is made up of lawyers who combine 'substantial trial and former prosecutorial experience' with 'tremendous energy'. It is often called upon to handle internal and government investigations, as well as criminal enforcement matters. Names to note in Washington DC include Alex Bourelly and Amy Conway-Hatcher (both of whom are commended as 'outstanding'), Bridget Moore and Kyle Clark, while Lynn Neils is recommended in New York. Randall Turk retired in 2018.

Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: transactional Tier 4

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s employee benefits team is headed by Gail Stewart, who recently advised Rockwater Energy Solutions on the treatment and conversion of employee equity awards in connection with its $1.7bn stock-for-stock merger with Select Energy Services. In addition, Rob Fowler handled the executive compensation aspects (including 280G and 409A compliance issues) of McDermott International’s $6bn cross-border merger with Chicago Bridge & Iron. Eric Winwood and associate Marian Fielding are key contacts in the Dallas office, where recent mandates included advising additives supplier SI Group on its acquisition by private investment firm SK Capital Partners. Further, Mark Bodron handled the equity and incentive awards, 401(k) and pension benefits, welfare benefits and retention issues in relation to Vectren Corporation’s $6bn merger with CenterPoint Energy. Names lawyer are based in Houston unless otherwise stated.

General commercial disputes Tier 4

Trial-ready firm Baker Botts L.L.P. excels in high-stakes, sensitive commercial disputes, where it acts for well-known companies across the financial services, TMT, energy and consumer goods sectors, among others. In a recent highlight, a cross-office team of Dallas and San Francisco-based lawyers led by Van Beckwith acted for longstanding client Keurig Dr Pepper as defendant in putative class actions in Texas, California, Missouri, Massachusetts, Illinois, and New York concerning the labeling of Canada Dry Ginger Ale. Former Solicitor General for the State of Texas Scott Keller joined the Washington DC office in September 2018. Other key names include New York-based Richard Harper, Houston-based Rebecca Huddle and Tom O’Brien in Dallas.

Patents: litigation (full coverage) Tier 4

Baker Botts L.L.P. has 'a great deal of technical and legal expertise' and 'experience in all forums'. Moreover, the practitioners are 'excellent at coordinating litigation where actions take place in multiple forums simultaneously, keeping the ultimate goal in sight'. Technology-related litigation is the group's mainstay, with a recent example being the successful defense of Twilio in a patent infringement case against TeleSign involving four patents with an estimated claim value of approximately $870m; that matter was led by San Francisco duo Wayne Stacy and Sarah Guske. Key practitioners also include practice chairs Barton Showalter and Christa Brown-SanfordKurt Pankratz, 'top-notch attorneysDouglas Kubehl and Houston-based Roger Fulghum, 'masterful tactical thinker' Hopkins Guy in Palo Alto, and 'very experienced litigatorRobert Scheinfeld in New York. Austin's David Weaver is 'a strong negotiator'. Clients also include Genband, Fujifilm and AT&T Mobility. Unless otherwise stated, all practitioners are based in Dallas.

Patents: litigation (International Trade Commission) Tier 4

Baker Botts L.L.P. was especially visible as counsel for Fujifilm, which the group repeatedly defended against investigations filed by competitor Sony alleging patent infringement of magnetic data storage tapes and cartridges. Further, Oxford Nanopore instructed the team in litigation against Illumina regarding DNA sequencing patents in addition to an investigation filed by Pacific Biosciences. Other clients include Western Digital and subsidiary Sandisk, Ericsson and Samsung. Practice head Lisa Kattan in Washington DC, a former senior investigative attorney at the ITC Office of Unfair Import Investigations, and New York's Robert Scheinfeld and Robert Maier are the key contacts.

Trade secrets (litigation and non-contentious matters) Tier 4

The IP team at Baker Botts L.L.P. is led by Bart Showalter, Kevin Meek, Chris Ryan, who are all based in Texas and experienced in trade secret litigation. Highlights included David Wille's advice to Manitowoc Cranes in a trade secrets misappropriation lawsuit against the Chinese company Sany Heavy Industry. Elsewhere, Paul Reilly and Robert Maier defended PepsiCo against ScentSational Technologies in a trade secret misappropriation case involving a scent used for its drinks packaging. Meanwhile, Tim Durst acted for Samsung Electronics in a claim brought by ZeniMax, which alleged that the client obtained trade secrets from the ZeniMax for its virtual reality technology via its partnership with Oculus and Facebook. Katharine Burke is also highly recommended.

US taxes: non-contentious Tier 4

Baker Botts L.L.P.'s tax attorneys are ‘very experienced’ in M&A, SALT and capital markets transactions. The firm has particular strengths in the energy, oil and gas and technology sectors, where Derek Green and Jon Lobb, working with the corporate team in Dallas, advised McDermott International on its combination with Chicago Bridge & Iron Company, which included a three-to-one reverse stock split and a multibillion-dollar credit agreement. Richard Husseini is noted for providing ‘excellent, strategic and thorough advice’; he recently advised Chesapeake Energy Corporation on its agreement to acquire WildHorse Resource Development Corporation for $4bn. In Washington DC, ‘accomplished tax partner’ Tamar Stanley acted for CommerceHub in its cash acquisition by private equity firms GTCR and Sycamore Partners for approximately $1.1bn. Michael Bresson and Robert Phillpott are also of note. Jeff Munk departed for an in-house position at Cellfire. All partners are based in Houston.

M&A: large deals ($1bn+) Tier 5

Baker Botts L.L.P. is further diversifying its M&A practice with further growth in TMT alongside its historical leadership of the power and energy sector. That said, the hire of a four partner team from Vinson & Elkins LLP, including Mike Rosenwasser, Michael Swidler and Adorys Velazquez have given the firm an even greater energy standing in New York. The expanded team is 'very commercial and business focused'. It remains a leader in upstream and midstream energy from its Houston base and power M&A continues to be a source of big engagements, thanks in part to the presence of Bill Lamb. New York partner Renee Wilm is making a considerable impression in the TMT space. She led the team that advised Liberty Interactive on its acquisition of GCI Liberty, and series of transactions that effected the split-off of GCI Liberty. She also headed the group that advised Liberty Latin America on its $9.3bn split-off from Liberty Global. Wilm is 'excellent and knows how to spot and solve the business issues for her clients'. On the energy side, the firm advised BHP Billiton on the $10.8bn sale of its entire interests in the Eagle Ford, Haynesville, Permian and Fayetteville Onshore US oil and gas assets to BP. Joshua Davidson is another leader in energy M&A and Geoffrey Newton is a key figure in Dallas. New York partner Mike Bengtson is chair of the firm-wide corporate department. Former partner David Kirkland sadly died in 2018. All partners are based in Houston unless stated otherwise.

Real estate Tier 5

'Trusted advisor' Baker Botts L.L.P. advises domestic and international clients on commercial real estate developments, joint ventures, acquisitions and sales, financings and leasing transactions. Dallas-based Jeremy Gott recently took a lead role for Hunt Realty on the purchase of more than 2,500 acres of land in Texas for a mixed-use development. Paul Landen, who is based in Houston, advised key client Hines on the redevelopment of The Parks at Walter Reed, a 66-acre land development on the site of a former army medical base. Houston-based Kimberly Schlanger acted for Pinto Realty Partners on the negotiation of a joint venture with Pinpoint Commercial for the development of three multifamily projects in Houston, while San Francisco-based Patricia Stanton advised Hines on a multi-tier joint venture involving the $1.9bn development of a 200-acre site in San Diego, California. New York-based special counsel Brayton Dresser and Dallas-based Stephen Marcus are also recommended.

Latin America: International firms > Projects and energy Tier 4

Baker Botts L.L.P. has outstanding energy credentials in the Latin America energy sector, involving a variety of corporate acquisitions, foreign direct investments, project development and project finance. In recent years it  closely aligned itself  with the previous Mexican government's energy reforms, but a series of lateral hires have enabled it to build market share elsewhere. Clients include Alto Maipo, Costa Norte LNG Terminal, Gas Natural Atlantico, AES Corporation and Petrobras. The team recently advised Petrobras, on the sale of its fuel distribution business in Paraguay to local gas station operator, Grupo Copetrol; and AES Corporation affiliate Alto Maipo on the restructuring of its 531MW, run-of-the-river hydroelectric project in Chile. Houston partner Carlos Solé has achieved prominence in energy project development, particularly in relation to Mexico's energy reforms. Houston's Ned Crady also deserves recognition for his experience in oil, gas and power projects and transactions throughout Latin America. Washington DC's Mark Spivak is noted for project development and finance in the conventional power, renewables and oil-and-gas sectors.

Baker Botts is an international law firm with about 725 lawyers and a network of 14 offices around the globe. Based on its experience and knowledge of its clients’ industries, Baker Botts is recognized as a leading firm in the energy and technology sectors. Throughout its over 175-year history, the firm has provided creative and effective legal solutions for clients, while demonstrating an unrelenting commitment to excellence. For more information, please visit our website.

The Firm: Baker Botts is a globally respected law firm with offices around the world. Since 1840, the firm has used the highest ethical and professional standards, combined with the firm’s reach and depth of understanding of the law, to help it deliver better and more innovative solutions for clients.

Main Areas of Practice: Baker Botts counsels the world’s leading companies in every area of the law, including international and domestic corporate and financial matters, corporate governance, international arbitration, technology, intellectual property, business litigation, appellate matters, white-collar criminal defense, government contracts, federal and state legislative matters, energy and oil and gas matters, real estate, administrative, and regulatory matters involving energy, environmental and international trade.

Austin: This office opened in the late 1970s and now has approximately 75 lawyers serving the legal needs of both Austin-based businesses and Fortune 500 companies in corporate, environmental, intellectual property and litigation matters. Originally established to address client needs during the Texas legislative session, the office has evolved to serve clients nationally and internationally.

Dallas: This office opened in 1985 and has grown to 105 lawyers. The office provides a full range of legal services to public entities, Fortune 500 companies and many other clients with interests throughout the world.

Houston: The firm’s main office has been an integral part of Houston’s business community since 1840. From its earliest days, the firm participated in the evolution of the oil and gas industry and has represented nearly every major domestic oil company in the US, as well as numerous international oil companies. Today, with approximately 200 lawyers, the office encompasses a dynamic group of lawyers who continue to handle landmark cases and deals for clients in a multitude of industries.

New York: This office opened in 1992 to help better serve clients with interests in the financial services, technology, media and energy industries. With approximately 100 lawyers, this office provides clients with superior legal services in the areas of corporate law, intellectual property law, business and securities litigation, global projects, and tax law.

Palo Alto: This office opened in 2008 to provide greater support for clients on the West Coast and Pacific Rim. With approximately 30 lawyers, the office handles complex patent litigation in the California federal courts and intellectual property matters nationwide.

Washington: This office opened in 1973. From the beginning, the office has held a global presence in the energy industry. With approximately 130 lawyers, the office offers a full range of corporate, energy, environmental, intellectual property, litigation and regulatory compliance services for domestic, as well as international, clients.

San Francisco: This office opened in 2016 to provide support to the growing technology sector and our experience in areas such as corporate, intellectual property litigation, patent prosecution,  real estate, life sciences and corporate investigations.

International Work
Saudi Arabia: The firm’s Riyadh office has operated in association with the law office of Mohanned bin Saud Al-Rasheed since 2001. It is acknowledged as one of the leading practices in the region and advises clients in Saudi Arabia and throughout the Middle East on a broad range of commercial, banking, project finance, telecoms, oil and gas matters, as well as litigation and arbitration.

United Arab Emirates: In 2005, the firm expanded its presence in the region by opening an office in Dubai. Baker Botts’ Dubai office provides services to clients in a number of sectors in the energy industry, including oil and gas exploration and development, oil field services, electric power, LNG, petrochemicals, pipelines, and gas-to-liquids. The firm’s energy-related project development and finance work is enhanced by its experience with the complex issues faced in financing these projects under local law, which is largely founded on the shari’ah or Islamic law. In addition to its work across the broad spectrum of the energy sector, the Dubai office serves clients in corporate, banking, finance, capital markets, telecommunications, government contracts and dispute resolution matters.

Europe: The London and Brussels offices play a pivotal role in the firm’s international activity, serving clients in the UK, continental Europe and beyond. The London office handles market-leading energy, finance, corporate/M&A, TMT, chemicals and dispute resolution matters, and has both UK and US law capabilities. The firm’s newest office in Brussels is dedicated to antitrust and competition-related matters. The Brussels team offers authoritative advice for clients on a broad scope of complex antitrust and competition law matters before the European Union and member states, including merger control, cartel investigations, abuse of dominance questions, antitrust litigation, the intersection of intellectual property, and antitrust and antitrust compliance.

Russia: The Moscow office, with its dynamic and versatile team of business lawyers, has played a vital role in providing clients in Russia and the CIS with a strong domestic and seamless international service. The office advises on energy, mining, corporate/M&A, environmental, intellectual property, dispute resolution, real estate, finance and investment funds.

Asia: Baker Botts has represented many of the world’s leading energy companies in major projects in Asia for more than three decades. Lawyers in the firm’s Hong Kong and Beijing offices guide clients through Asia’s rapid economic development and increased demand for energy, resources and finance. In addition, the offices’ capabilities have grown to include intellectual property and dispute resolution experience.

Department Name Email Telephone
Corporate Mike Bengtson (Chair)
Global Projects Jason Bennett (Chair)
Intellectual property Robert Scheinfeld (Chair)
Litigation Bridget Moore (Chair)
Litigation Danny David (Chair)
Tax Richard Husseini (Chair)
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Number of Partners : 291
Number of Other Lawyers : 465
Managing Partner : John Martin