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SD&M Secures Appellate Win Upholding Final Judgment on Behalf of Lynch, Chappell & Alsup, P.C.
May 21, 2018

Kim BuenoRobyn HargroveSD&M attorneys Kim Bueno and Robyn Hargrove have won an appeal on behalf of the law firm of Lynch, Chappell & Alsup, P.C. 

In the trial court, Lynch Chappell filed suit to recover a contingency fee that its former client owed the firm for its work on her behalf in an estate proceeding. The former client counterclaimed for breach of fiduciary, arguing that the fee was too high. 

In the trial court, the former client refused to turn over her recordings of her conversations with her Lynch Chappell attorneys. SD&M obtained sanctions against the former client for her discovery abuse, ordering that she be prevented from admitting evidence of her communications with Lynch Chappell in the lawsuit. SD&M then won summary judgment, resulting in a final judgment that Lynch Chappell was entitled to its fee, and dismissing the fiduciary duty claims as meritless as a matter of law.

The El Paso Court of Appeals upheld the sanctions order and the final judgment, concluding that the trial court correctly determined that Lynch Chappell was entitled to its fee. The court also noted that Lynch Chappell had obtained a favorable result in the estate proceeding, and that it had voluntarily elected to take less than the full 25% it was entitled to receive under the contingent fee contract. In response to the former client’s claim that the 25% fee was too high, the court concluded:  “We cannot undo a contract that was conscionable at its inception simply because a party later regrets making a deal.”

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SDM Honored at Pro Bono Service Awards Reception
May 18, 2018

Scott Douglass & McConnico is honored to be among a special group of outstanding firms and volunteers who will be recognized for exceptional volunteer service at the Judge Suzanne Covington Pro Bono Service Awards Reception.

Every year, Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas honors attorneys and law firms that exemplify Judge Suzanne Covington’s extraordinary commitment to pro bono legal services.

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Steve McConnico Presents on Legal Legends Panel
May 14, 2018

Steve McConnicoSteve McConnico joins Texas Supreme Court Justice Paul Green, Judge Lora Livingston and former State Bar President Lisa Tatum for the Texas Young Lawyers Association Legal Legends CLE. This panel of esteemed speakers will present about litigation, tips from the bench, and the development of trial practice through the years. Following the panel, guests enjoy dinner and networking that allows time for younger and more senior lawyers to connect. This program gives young attorneys and more experienced attorneys the opportunity to get to know one another, and learn from one another in the hope that they can open the door for future mentor-mentee relationships.

Scott Douglass associate John Ellis has served on the board of TYLA since 2014, where he has helped create and execute a wide variety of public service projects.

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Dan Bitting Presents Fiduciary Litigation CLE
May 2, 2018

Daniel C. BittingDan Bitting will co-present at the Austin Bar Association's May Civil Litigation Section CLE on the topic Navigating the World of Contested Probate Proceedings and Fiduciary Litigation: A Guide for Litigators on the Ins and Outs of Probate Court and Fiduciary Litigation.

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John Ellis Elected District Representative to the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division
April 19, 2018

John EllisScott Douglass & McConnico associate John Ellis was recently elected to serve as the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Representative for District 25, representing South/Central Texas. For this two-year term, John will serve as the liaison between the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (YLD) and the seventeen young lawyer affiliate organizations across south and central Texas. John has served in various leadership roles in public service for many years, and he is currently completing his second term as an elected member of the Texas Young Lawyers Association (TYLA).  He has served on the TYLA board of directors since 2014, where he has helped create and implement a wide variety of service projects benefitting the legal profession and general public.

With over 130,000 members and 300 affiliated groups, the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division is the largest young lawyer organization in the world. The YLD is committed to assuring it is best able to represent the newest members of the profession, ensuring that it reflects the society it serves, and providing young lawyers and young lawyer organizations with the tools and opportunities for professional and personal success.

Scott Douglass & McConnico is a litigation firm representing clients in a wide range of business disputes, oil, gas and other energy disputes, state and local tax disputes, appeals, and administrative law.

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Sara Wilder Clark and Jane Webre Present at VLS Lunch CLE Series
April 19, 2018

Sara ClarkJane WebreSara Wilder Clark and Jane Webre, both regular volunteers for VLS pro bono cases, will present a CLE as part of Volunteer Legal Services' Lunchtime CLE Series.

These trainings provide guidance for lawyers and range in topic from courtroom skills to managing family law cases.

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Kennon Wooten Receives TCWLA Award
April 12, 2018

Kennon WootenKennon Wooten will receive a 2018 Travis County Women Lawyers' Association Attorney Award for her contributions to the legal profession, specifically in Litigation. 

Since 1991, TCWLA has celebrated the contributions of women in the legal profession. These awards are meant to highlight the low-profile contributions made by members of the profession. The award recipients, who are nominated by their peers, show their merit in their work, their volunteer activities and the atmosphere they create in the workplace.

Individuals are recognized in the areas of Pro Bono, Public Interest, Litigation, Transactional, Contribution to Minority Community, President’s Award, and Outstanding Achievement. One of the awards recognizes a firm, organization, or government entity for hiring women or for progressive work-place policies.

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Kennon Wooten Earns Standing Ovation Award from TexasBarCLE
April 2, 2018

Kennon WootenKennon Wooten was honored by the State Bar of Texas for her exceptional contributions in 2017 to the Bar's continuing legal education efforts.

Ms. Wooten was one of seven volunteer lawyers receiving a Standing Ovation award from the staff of TexasBarCLE, the Bar's division for providing continuing legal education and one of the premier providers in the nation.

Hedy Bower, Director of TexasBarCLE, explained the significance of the award. "All of our volunteers deserve our gratitude for contributing to the continuing education of their peers. Nevertheless, some stand out each year for extraordinary dedication and commitment. The staff looks forward to singling out individuals that not only gave enormously to our efforts, but also were gracious, easy to work with, and — oftentimes — helped us out in a real pinch."

"Without volunteers," Bower continued, "CLE from the State Bar couldn't be nearly as high quality, as abundant, or as affordable. Attorney volunteers are the reason TexasBarCLE can claim the slogan, 'Education by the Bar, for the Bar.' "

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Kennon Wooten Appointed to Supreme Court Advisory Committee
March 26, 2018

Kennon WootenThe Supreme Court of Texas appointed Kennon Wooten as a member of the Supreme Court Advisory Committee (SCAC), a group of only fifty lawyers across the state who assist in the continuing study, review, and development of rules of administration and procedure for Texas courts.

This will not be the first time Kennon has worked with the SCAC. She has served as an ex-officio member of the SCAC since 2016 in her capacity as the Chair of the State Bar of Texas Court Rules Committee. And before joining SDM, Kennon was the Rules Attorney for the Supreme Court of Texas and had the privilege of working with the SCAC during that time.

This esteemed appointment puts Kennon in the company of another SDM lawyer, Steve McConnico, who was as a member of the SCAC from 1984-1993. The firm is honored to have our lawyers serve the Court in this way, and we congratulate Kennon on her appointment.

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David Shank Presents "Pushing the Boundaries on Issues Related to Technology Companies & Trade Secrets"
March 26, 2018

David ShankDavid Shank will present on a panel titled “Pushing the Boundaries on Issues Related to Technology Companies & Trade Secrets” at the Austin Bar Association’s 2018 Bench Bar Conference. David will present along with Judge Robert Pitman, of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, and Jonathan Kaplan, Chief Legal Officer for RetailMeNot, Inc. The panel will be moderated by Stefanie Scott Shah, of Scott Shah Law.

The Austin Bar Association and AYLA Foundation’s annual Bench Bar Conference provides local attorneys and judges the opportunity to interact outside the courtroom in a casual, discussion-oriented environment.

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Seven SDM Lawyers Named to Texas Rising StarsĀ®
March 12, 2018

SDM is pleased to announce that Super Lawyers® has selected seven Scott Douglass & McConnico attorneys for inclusion in Texas Rising Stars®  2018 by Thomson and Reuters.  The following firm attorneys were selected for this honor:

Anthony Arguijo - Business Litigation
Kim Gustafson Bueno - Products: Defense
John W. Ellis - Business Litigation
Mark W. Hanna  -  Energy & Resources
Olga Kobzar - Energy & Resources
Bryan Lauer - Business Litigation
David Shank - Business Litigation

Rising Stars are considered the top up-and-coming attorneys in Texas. To be eligible, lawyers must be 40 years old or younger or in practice for 10 years or less. Less than 2.5% of Texas attorneys are chosen for this honor. The complete list will be published in the April 2018 issues of Texas Monthly and Super Lawyers magazines.  We are proud that so many of our attorneys were nominated and selected as Rising Stars again this year. Super Lawyers® is a Thompson Reuters publication.

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Anthony Arguijo Elected as a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation
March 9, 2018

Anthony ArguijoCongratulations to Anthony Arguijo for being elected as a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, an elite group of Texas lawyers.

Election to the Fellows is one of the highest honors that can be bestowed upon a member of the State Bar of Texas.

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Dan Bitting to Speak on Preventing Malpractice Claims
March 7, 2018

Dan BittingDan Bitting will present on Preventing Malpractice Claims at the March meeting of Solos Supporting Solos Austin. Solos Supporting Solos Austin is modeled after a group started in Houston some twenty years ago by noted probate Attorney Jimmy Brill. The format of the group allows lawyers with a solo practice the opportunity for education, networking and sharing ideas for problem-solving.

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Curtis Osterloh Elected as a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation
March 7, 2018

Curtis OsterlohCongratulations to Curtis Osterloh for being elected as a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, an elite group of Texas lawyers.

Election to the Fellows is one of the highest honors that can be bestowed upon a member of the State Bar of Texas.

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Chris Sileo Participates in AYLA Runway for Justice
March 5, 2018

Chris SileoScott Douglass is pleased to support the Fourth Annual AYLA Runway for Justice.

The firm's managing partner, Chris Sileo, will be one of twenty featured attorney models showing his support for the AYLA Foundation and the Women’s Resource Fair.

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Dan Bitting and Olga Kobzar Speak at Aggie Bar Conference
March 1, 2018

Dan BittingOlga Kobzar Dan Bitting and Olga Kobzar will speak on a panel at the Texas Aggie Bar Association’s annual conference. Olga is one of the panelists and Dan will moderate the discussion entitled, “The Texas Oil and Gas Industry: Its Present Shape and Future Outlook.”

The Texas Aggie Bar Association is an association of lawyers and law students who attended Texas A&M University or Texas A&M University School of Law. Additional information about the Association and the annual conference is available here

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Becky Miller Presents at the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation
February 21, 2018

Becky MillerBecky Miller will be a panelist at the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Special Institute on Drafting and Negotiating the Modern Oil and Gas Lease. Becky will be one of 4 panelists comparing various state lease forms and unique state leasing practices of several Rockies states, Texas and Alaska. The Institute will be held May 3-4, 2018, at the Grand Hyatt, Denver, Colorado

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Casey Dobson Serves as Vice Chairman for Opportunity Austin
February 5, 2018

Casey Dobson Casey Dobson has served on the Greater Austin Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors since 2012, and as Vice Chairman of the Board for 2017 and 2018. The Board is the governing body of the Austin Chamber's Opportunity Austin and is made up of representatives from businesses who are Lead Investors.

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Becky Miller and Carroll Martin Present at Annual Oil, Gas and Mineral Law Institute
February 2, 2018

Becky MillerCarroll MartinAt the 2018 Ernest E. Smith Oil, Gas and Mineral Law Institute, presented by the University of Texas School Of Law, Becky Miller will present on Implied Covenants, and Carroll Martin will be interviewing Prof. Smith during the lunch program on Friday.

See the full agenda and details here.

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John Ellis Speaks on the Ethics of Social Media Marketing for Lawyers
January 26, 2018

John EllisJohn Ellis presented to the American Academy of Attorney-CPA’s Southwest Regional Conference held in Austin, Texas on January 19, 2018. John presented a CLE discussion on ethical rules governing attorney advertising and marketing through social media. The AAA-CPA is an organization comprised of individuals who have dually-qualified as attorneys and certified public accountants. Its mission is to provide its members with quality education, opportunities to connect and the professional resources to support and develop their practices.

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City of Allen Wins Reversal of SOAH Order
January 12, 2018

Cathy WebkingStephanie KoverSDM lawyers Cathy Webking and Stephanie Kover received a unanimous decision by the PUC in favor of our client, the City of Allen.  The decision reversed a SOAH order and allows the City of Allen to move forward with some major high-end development plans.

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Curtis Osterloh Presents at the Council on State Taxation (COST) Sales Tax Conference
January 3, 2018

Curtis OsterlohCurtis Osterloh will speak at the COST 2018 Sales Tax Conference & Audit Session to be held February 26 – March 1, 2018 in New Orleans, LA. Curtis will be part of a panel presenting on Issues Brewing in the Western States, specifically providing an update for “K” radio station call number states and discussing important litigation and legislation developments in the states west of the Mississippi.

COST is the premier state tax organization representing taxpayers and a nonprofit trade association consisting of over 600 multistate corporations engaged in interstate and international business.

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Anthony Arguijo and Steve Britt named SDM Partners
January 1, 2018

Anthony ArguijoSteve BrittScott Douglass is pleased to name Anthony Arguijo and Steve Britt as Partners in the firm.

Anthony joined the firm in 2013 after serving as a law clerk for Judge Edward C. Prado on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.  Before that, he was a briefing attorney for Chief Justice Wallace B. Jefferson on the Supreme Court of Texas.  He draws on both of these experiences to help clients navigate litigation and maximize their chance of success at every stage.

Steve practices with the firm's state and local tax litigation group representing large and small companies in administrative protests of tax assessments before various taxing authorities. He also litigates tax assessments in Texas district courts and advises clients concerning the tax implications of business transactions. Prior to joining SD&M in 2009, Steve was a high school teacher and a coach for ten years.

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Kim Bueno Elected as Fellow of Texas Bar Foundation
December 28, 2017

Kim BuenoCongratulations to Kim Bueno for being elected as a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, an elite group of Texas lawyers.

Election to the Fellows is one of the highest honors that can be bestowed upon a member of the State Bar of Texas.