Representative cases

Corporate

When a minority shareholder/employee of a closely held corporation was discharged and the corporation attempted unsuccessfully to purchase back his stock, he sued alleging initially breach of fiduciary duty. After bonuses were paid to employees unaccompanied by the payment of a dividend to shareholders, he amended. When a cash call was made through the sale of additional stock, thereby potentially diluting the stock holdings of the minority shareholder, he amended again, alleging various derivative causes of action as well as shareholder oppression and fraud. The case was tried and taken under advisement where it remains as of this writing.

Our firm's involvement in this practice area extends well beyond litigation, and includes corporate formation and other topics addressed in the section of this website "About You" and the drop down menus related to business issues.


Employment

Employment plaintiff

When two pilots were discharged from a major airline for allegedly flying their plane without clothes, the story received national attention. McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was retained by the pilots to address the alleged wrongful termination of the pilots. By combining civil process with a strategy incorporating the benefits of the pilots' collective bargaining agreement, all matters were resolved and the pilots retained their employment with restoration of full benefits including back pay.

Employment defendant

When a Houston employer extended a job offer to a candidate it understood to be a woman, only to later learn that the applicant was a transgender, the employer withdrew its offer of employment and was sued. Challenging the concept that transgenders fall within a protected class of employee, and much to the dissatisfaction of commentators on "The View" television program, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was able to make the withdrawal of the offer of employment stick and exonerate the employer.


Environmental

Environmental plaintiff

When an alumina company changed its source of bauxite, the quality deteriorated, creating a tremendously greater quantity of "red mud", thereby increasing the utilization of drying beds beyond their capacity. Red mud dries into a very fine particulate size, causing problems such as dust contamination, corrosive property damage, and personal injury ranging from burning skin to respiratory issues. McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was retained to address the property damage and personal injuries to nearby homeowners. The suit against the polluter ultimately resulted in the relocation of the residents to safer locations and for damages to compensate them for their losses.

Environmental defendant

When TCE contaminated the water supply of thousands of residents of Wharton County, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was retained to represent the defense contractor who had used TCE in its alumina process decades before. By combining the expertise of experts in the disciplines of hydrogeology, environmental history, toxicology, and environmental engineering with strong factual investigation from witnesses employed over the decades, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was able to present a case that proved that the pollution plume had occurred in a way that defeated the theory that its client could have possibly caused the contamination of the water supply.

Fire

When a commercial building and its contents were completely destroyed by fire, with a total property loss aggregating well into seven figures, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was retained by the electrical contractor to investigate and determine cause and origin, examine the scope of work by the contractor, eliminate other causes of the fire such as arson and defend the electrician from exposure to the damages resulting from the blaze. The issues litigated included whether the cause of the fire was electrical and therefore the fault of our client, who had been actively engaged in electrical work on the premises immediately before the fire, or whether the fire was the result of arson. Thorough investigation revealed evidence of motive and opportunity for an intentionally set fire and witness accounts placed at issue the "accidental" and "negligent" characterization of the cause of the fire being urged by the plaintiff. Despite the lack of positive chemistry on debris samples where accelerant sniffing dogs had alerted, and despite an "undetermined" causal determination by one fire marshal and an "electrical" causal determination by another, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm persuaded a Liberty County jury to find the electrical contractor defendant to be completely without fault.

Oilfield

In the process of a natural gas recompletion project, problems were encountered when retrieving the perforation guns, causing the remaining perforations to be postponed until the following day. Failures of the blowout preventer necessitated the employment of a subcontractor to bleed pressure off the well over night until the perforations could be completed. The subcontractor toiled through inclement weather to assemble the testing apparatus and inadvertently connected a 10,000 psi union to a 15,000 psi union. When the equipment was pressurized, an explosion ensued, killing the contractor, who was survived by a wife and two children. Marathon Oil retained McCormick and Boyd Law Firm to defend it against allegations that it was pressuring its subcontractors to work more quickly, failing to provide a safe place to work by not providing adequate lighting and failing to provide adequate assistance from other contractors. McCormick and Boyd Law Firm presented a defense sufficient to overcome all allegations of wrongdoing and exonerate Marathon and its other subcontractors.


General Tort Claims

Defamation, Lanham Act , RICO, Product Disparagement, Negligence:

When a group of successful businessmen from across the country were identified as parties responsible for disparaging the name and products of a century-old corporation, conspiring to cause it financial harm and negligently or intentionally contributing to a preexisting public relations problem, the well-financed corporate giant sued, seeking $1.8 billion in damages. McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was hired to defend the case, which remains pending, awaiting the 5th Circuit's review of the dismissal of plaintiff's claims.

Our firm handles a wide variety of general tort cases from premises liability to medical or professional negligence to defamation to fraud to trespass to attractive nuisance to simple negligence, all involving factual settings to numerous to mention. McCormick and Boyd Law Firm has handled nearly every tort claim available to be pursued under Texas law. If it is tort exposure you face or wish to pursue, chances are we have handled one similar to yours.


Insurance

Insurance Plaintiff

When an insurance company denied benefits to the owner of a cabin cruiser that sank in the aftermath of a gulf hurricane, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was retained to represent the owner of the boat in a suit against the insurance company and the broker. After investigation into renewal language, binding authority of the agent, tropical storm and weather disturbance exclusions and the relationships between the broker and the underwriters of the London carrier, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was able to achieve recovery for the boat owner.

Insurance Defendant

When insurance companies were sued for denying benefits to insureds who had allegedly committed fraud in the application process, fraud in the presentation of claims, and allegedly engineered their claimed losses through arson, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm successfully defended the carriers and prevented the attempts at insurance fraud.


Multi-level Marketing

Multi-level Marketing Defendant

When disgruntled competitors brought suit against successful businessmen engaged in a network marketing business and alleging civil RICO violations, fraud, unfair trade practices, illegal pyramid operation, defamation, business disparagement and violations of the Sherman Act, the Texas Bribery Statute, and the Texas Business Opportunity Statute, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was hired to defend the claims. The plaintiffs sought recovery of nearly $200 million and the case was successfully tried through arbitration and awaits retrial through the district courts for remaining plaintiffs not subject to the arbitration agreement.

Our work in this practice area extends well beyond litigation and features efforts to resolve conflicts at the conciliation or mediation stage, through seminars and preventive advice and through general corporate or distributor counseling. We also assist in the: start-up of multilevel marketing companies; drafting of compensation plans and policies and procedures; creation of effective compliance departments; and giving of general advice to both distributors and corporations.

Multi-level Marketing Plaintiff

When distributors of a network marketing company wished to diversify and participate concurrently in another, unrelated, network marketing company, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was hired to challenge the policies and procedures that allegedly precluded the participation of the distributors even in two unrelated companies. Relying on the law governing non-competition clauses, certain antitrust statutes and FTC rulings, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm obtained injunctive relief and ultimately resolved the dispute before a final trial on the merits.

Our work in this practice area extends well beyond litigation and features efforts to resolve conflicts at the conciliation or mediation stage, through seminars and preventive advice and through general corporate or distributor counseling. We also assist in the: start-up of multilevel marketing companies; drafting of compensation plans and policies and procedures; creation of effective compliance departments; and giving of general advice to both distributors and corporations.


Personal Injury

Personal Injury Plaintiff

The death of a mentally handicapped woman who had been mistreated, improperly medicated and neglected while in the care of workers at an assisted living center chain for the mentally challenged resulted in the retention of McCormick and Boyd Law Firm to investigate and redress the perceived injustice. Factual investigation revealed that workers were working 8 hours at one franchise of the chain then going immediately to their "night job" at the subject location, where those same workers would put in an additional 10 to 12 hours. The workers were obviously doubling their pay and being compensated for sleeping. Further investigation challenged the effectiveness of the medication program and the financial incentive of such assisted living facilities to diminish medication toward the end of the calendar month as Medicaid funds for prescriptions ran low, then resume regular dosages at the first of the month. By working with forensic physicians and toxicologists and coupling the science with testimony from undertrained and overworked employees, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm obtained a favorable monetary result and the chain is no longer in business.

Personal Injury Defendant

When an electrician and his company were involved in the electrocution of a completely innocent plaintiff who was working beneath a double-wide trailer being held for sale on a mobile home retail lot, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm was retained to defend the electrician, investigate the facts surrounding the work performed and compare it to the forensic evidence of the electrocution. The primary challenge was to overcome the natural sympathy a jury would feel toward the surviving wife and child of the deceased. While attempting to connect the duct work from one side of the trailer to the other side, the worker, a 37-year-old wage earner who was survived by a 4-year-old son, a wife and an adult son, came in contact with the Freon line which was unexpectedly energized, resulting in his electrocution and consequent death. Representing the electrician and his co-workers who had together allegedly performed the work that caused the frame of the trailer and everything that came in contact with it to be energized, including the Freon line, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm set out to disprove negligence, gross negligence, breach of contract and various violations of the Uniform Building Code and NEC standards. Overcoming documents indicating that the defendants had in fact performed the substandard work, the firm convinced a Fort Bend county jury to find no negligence, no gross negligence and no breach of contract, resulting in complete exoneration of the client.


Products Liability

Products Liability Plaintiff

A tread and belt separation tragedy in west Texas resulted in the death of a devoted wife and mother of two and personal injury of other passengers in the vehicle. McCormick and Boyd Law Firm brought the wrongful death, survivor and bystander claims of her sons and husband and the personal injury claims of the passengers. The suit challenged the design and manufacturing of a tire manufactured in Oklahoma. Factual investigation uncovered witnesses who testified that the manufacturer, in its zeal to produce tires more quickly, forced workers to ignore safety considerations in favor of higher production. From a design standpoint, patents obtained by the defendants revealed that nylon cap plies had been touted as a remedy for tread and belt separation but had not been used on tires produced in the United States for economic reasons (the cost would have increased by $.03 to $.10 per tire). The manufacturing defect, combined with the design defect resulted in a seven-figure verdict unparalleled in the federal court in San Angelo before then.

Products Liability Defendant

A products liability suit over the manufacture and design of an extruder that pushed cookie dough through funnels that would decrease in diameter to the point of producing "chubs" of slice-and-bake cookies dough resulted in McCormick and Boyd Law Firm being retained to investigate and defend the manufacturer. The material used to manufacture the funnels was alleged to be too brittle and the method in which it was seated in the cylinder of the extruder was alleged to be improper, causing the material to flake off and contaminate several hundred thousand chubs of cookies, resulting in damages of more than $1,000,000.00. Through interviews with employees and investigation into the product runs and maintenance schedules of the subject extruder, and working with material scientists and metallurgists, as well as the design engineers and supervisors involved in the manufacturing process, McCormick and Boyd Law Firm overcame a well-financed opponent and convinced a jury in federal court in Sherman, Texas that there were no design manufacturing or marketing defects, no deceptive trade practice violations and no negligence.


Trucking Accidents

Handling major accident cases since 1985, McCormick and Boyd bring common sense solutions to catastrophic circumstances. This year alone, McCormick and Boyd have negotiated multiple settlements in advance of even filing suit and others that have resolved early on in the process. It’s been said that, “Justice delayed is justice denied,” and the lawyers and staff at McCormick and Boyd work efficiently and diligently to ensure the best possible result in the minimum amount of time. But if justice cannot be obtained without court involvement, our lawyers have a depth of trial experienced unmatched by most of our competitors and results that instill confidence in our clients that they have made the right selection in choosing McCormick and Boyd.