Melissa Davis Quoted in Law360 on Six of the Biggest Texas Supreme Court Cases of 2019

“6 Biggest Texas Supreme Court Cases of 2019”

In its 2018-19 term, the Texas Supreme Court issued a seminal ruling on what it takes for attorneys to prove they can recover fees in litigation and implored state lawmakers to do more to curtail prosecutorial misconduct.

The high court erased a $17.5 million award in favor of General Electric Co. manufacturer Lufkin Industries against IBM Corp., trimmed by $5.3 million a jury award in favor of Houston Astros owner Jim Crane and denied a franchisee’s bid to have reinstated a $115 million award against Mercedes-Benz. In each of those rulings, the court focused on contractual waivers, putting the emphasis on the language of written agreements as they weighed what litigants could recover.

…It gives attorneys guidance on how two methods of calculating fees — the lodestar method and the Arthur Andersen factors — interact, said Melissa M. Davis of Thompson & Knight LLP, who welcomed the clarity from the court.

“Because the court said it’s not requiring billing records but ‘strongly encourages’ them, I think everyone is going to put forth billing records now,” she said.