2015 Year End Review


In January 2015, SKV was named Texas Firm of the Year by Benchmark Litigation.  But we didn’t rest on our laurels, and in the months that followed, SKV’s lawyers:

  • Obtained the dismissal of all felony charges against Robert Kaluza, the BP wellsite leader aboard the Deepwater Horizon charged with 22 counts of felony manslaughter and 1 count of misdemeanor Clean Water Act pollution.
  • Won $12.2 million in jury trial for client Quantlab in the Southern District of Texas against defendants for trade secret misappropriation and conspiracy and were awarded a strict permanent injunction, to add to the $28.5 million in stipulated judgments reached with four defendants who settled prior to trial.
  • Defeated a purported class action in the Western District of Arkansas alleging underpayment of gas royalties on 40,000 Arkansas leases by client BHP Billiton.  After an extended discovery period and multiple depositions, Plaintiffs moved for class certification.  Shortly after SKV filed its opposing brief to the motion, Plaintiffs elected to dismiss their claims against BHP before the class certification hearing.
  • Defeated a purported securities class action against client Nobilis Healthcare in the Southern District of Texas.  After SKV filed its Motion to Dismiss, Plaintiffs elected to dismiss their claims. 
  • Won a significant appellate victory, with the first known holding by an appellate court in Texas applying the doctrine of incorporation by reference to multiple agreements where only one contains an arbitration clause.  As a result, the bulk of the claims at issue were sent to arbitration, and remaining claims against SKV’s client were stayed pending the completion of arbitration.
  • Obtained the summary judgment for BHP/Petrohawk declaring $1 million liquidated damages provision an unenforceable penalty.
  • Obtained complete dismissal of defamation and related claims against individual client through Texas Citizens’ Participation Act.
  • Negotiated favorable settlement of royalty claims by royalty and working interest owner against oil and gas company.
  • Blocked a TRO by a Russian oil company to restrain a $400 million distribution from two Dutch trusts related to the former Yukos Oil.
  • Obtained a TRO against a former employee of Nobilis Healthcare against sharing confidential information in his possession for the benefit of competitors.
  • Obtained a complete victory for a leading energy company in an ICDR arbitration, with the panel resolving all issues in favor of SKV’s client, awarding its full attorneys’ fees and expenses.



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