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Carlos' Profile

Carlos is a Shareholder in the Firm’s Litigation Section. With over 25 years of experience, he has tried a wide range of cases throughout Texas and other states. As a trusted attorney among his colleagues, Carlos is frequently recruited to assist in trial or injunction proceeding efforts as case leader or as co-counsel. He represents other attorneys and assists them in numerous professional and personal litigation matters. Carlos has also published and lectured in various areas relating to trial and pretrial practice, including jury selection, expert challenges, attorneys’ fees, discovery, choice of law in private international litigation, and employment discrimination.

As a Board-Certified Personal Injury Trial Law attorney, Carlos focuses his practice on serving clients in courtroom disputes ranging from commercial, intellectual property, and technology, to landowner rights, personal injury, wrongful death, and other tort matters. In conjunction with his trial competence, Carlos has represented parties for over two decades in appeals, including oral arguments before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and Texas intermediate courts of appeals. He is bilingual and a native Spanish speaker.

Carlos earned his J.D. from Yale Law School and his B.A. from Yale University.

Carlos's Experience

Commercial Litigation

  • Obtained summary judgment for client in defense of alleged oral agreement where plaintiff sought over $150 million in alleged damages.
  • Obtained summary judgment and denial of plea to the jurisdiction in Travis County for plaintiff health plan client in ultra vires action against Health and Human Services Commissioner for breaching mandatory law pertaining to Medicaid contracting that was later affirmed by The Austin Court of Appeals.
  • Assisted in obtaining a defense verdict in jury trial in Travis County dispute involving allegation of pre-MSA investment by former spouse seeking $60 million.
  • Recovered substantial assets on behalf of clients defrauded $26 million as part of a Ponzi scheme.
  • Obtained judgment for the full amount of a construction debt dispute (including jury-awarded attorneys’ fees), which was affirmed on appeal.
  • Obtained summary judgment in favor of land mineral rights’ owners against EP Energy in excess of $40 million which is currently on appeal at the Supreme Court of Texas and in bankruptcy proceedings.
  • Obtained judgment in a bench trial for client in defense of alleged breach of contract and fraud allegations in real estate transactions.
  • Obtained a take-nothing judgment in the defense of a Mexican customs broker in a federal court bench trial.
  • Obtained a favorable, case-changing, choice-of-law ruling in an arbitration between a pump manufacturer and a Puerto Rican distributor.
  • Represented a health insurer plaintiff in an unfair competition case arising from a conversion campaign between a competing health plan, agents, and a physicians’ group and involving allegations of misusing confidential information.
  • Assisted in obtaining summary judgment against a challenge to the validity of a family mineral trust based on the rule against perpetuities in dispute.
  • Assisted in obtaining settlement for convention event client in suit against hotel that failed to provide agreed-upon convention facilities.
  • Successfully represented several clients in defeating invasive Rule 202 requests for pre-suit depositions and other requested discovery.
  • Assisted in representation of landowners in pipeline condemnation, nuisance, and trespass cases.

Insurance

  • Obtained Fifth Circuit opinion in 2016 affirming summary judgment for an insurer in a dispute over applicability of narcotics exclusion to insurance coverage.
  • Obtained summary judgment for health insurer in ERISA dispute in the Southern District of Texas which was affirmed by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and which the United States Supreme Court denied a petition for writ of certiorari.
  • Obtained dismissal of breach of life insurance claim for insurer client in face of pending hearing on summary judgment.
  • Obtained favorable opinion denying request for appellate attorney’s fees at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Privacy, First Amendment, & The Constitution

  • Obtained judgment including attorney’s fees award in bench trial for plaintiff in “revenge porn” and invasion of privacy case.
  • Obtained confidential settlements for clients in invasion of privacy disputes involving illicit video recordings in workplace bathroom and hospitality settings.
  • Represented landowner in nuisance dispute arising from the placement of a cell tower on adjacent property which interfered with client’s pre-existing use of a private airstrip.

Trade Secrets/Employment

  • Obtained 12(b)(6) dismissal of all claims against employer of new employee in trade secrets/non-compete dispute in the Western District of Texas after preliminary injunction hearing.
  • Obtained dismissal with prejudice in defense of national origin discrimination and retaliation suit in response to filing summary judgment.
  • Obtained dismissal of defamation claim against client seeking $2.5 million in damages in federal court.
  • Obtained summary judgment based on TUTSA preemption in for client accused of various torts in trade secret/competition case.
  • Assisted in the defense of a client in an oil and gas dispute where plaintiffs sought damages in excess of $100 million.
  • Assisted in prosecuting the counterclaims for misappropriation of trade secret seismic data in the Louisiana bench trial.
  • Defended software engineers from claims of misappropriation and breach of covenants in from suit brought by former employer.
  • Assisted in obtaining a summary judgment in federal court on behalf of an employer in an FLSA case filed as a collective action. The judgment was affirmed by the Fifth Circuit.
  • Obtained temporary injunction in federal court in a matter arising from the violation of a noncompete agreement by a trucking-broker employee.
  • Argued appeal to the Fifth Circuit that resulted in the reversal of an improperly granted summary judgment and directed verdict in a race and age discrimination case.
  • Obtained a no-liability ruling in bench trial of former employee tried on YouTube during COVID-19 pandemic resulting in dissolution of injunction and ruling in his favor on all claims against him.
  • Obtained Rule 12(b)(6) dismissal with prejudice of claims against former employee accused of various causes of action in trade secrets/competition case in Western District of Texas in a federal MDL dispute pending in Missouri.

Personal Injury & Wrongful Death

  • Represented family members in a landmark wrongful death and survival action in which he obtained a jury verdict and settlement for the widow and child of a man shot, killed, and abandoned by the employees of a ranch company.
  • Represented family in obtaining substantial pre-suit settlement in a multi-death case against a trucking company.
  • Assisted in the representation of a family in a wrongful death case against a trucking company and a road construction company in a case that settled during trial.
  • Assisted family members of a man who died in a vehicular accident in Texas defeat attempts to apply foreign law in wrongful death case.
  • Obtained a no-negligence verdict in the defense of a nurse and hospital in a malpractice jury trial.
  • Obtained a case-altering favorable ruling on choice of law in defense of a trucking company in a wrongful death case arising from an accident in Mexico.
  • Assisted in the defense of a law firm in a legal malpractice action in a federal court jury trial involving claims arising from patent matters and seeking in excess of $100 million.
  • Assisted in obtaining the dismissal of a case that was later affirmed on appeal of a law firm client in a securities suit alleging misrepresentations.

Carlos's Accolades

  • Texas Board of Legal Specialization, Board Certified Personal Injury Trial Law
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), Member, Austin Chapter
  • Benchmark Local Litigation Star (2017)
  • Texas Super Lawyer (2012-2021)
  • Texas Super Lawyer Rising Star (2004-2009)

Carlos's Affiliations and Civic Involvement

  • State Bar of Texas, Court Rules Committee Chair (2014-2016
  • Pattern Jury Charge (PJC) Committee, Vice Chair for Business, Consumer, Insurance, and Employment Volume (2001-2007, 2016-present)
  • Texas Board of Law Examiners, Director (2018-present
  • Joint Commission on Information Technology, Member
  • Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) Board Member

Carlos's Publications

Speaker and Author, Attorneys’ Fees 2022, 45th Advanced Civil Trial Course 2022, State Bar of Texas, Houston, Texas, July 2022, Dallas, Texas, (August 2022(

Speaker with Tom Nesbitt and Co-Author with Ken Hughes, Trade Secret and Non-Compete Update, 29th Annual Labor & Employment Law Conference 2021, UT CLE, (May 2022)

Speaker and Lead Author, Vanessa A. Suarez (contributing) English-Only Rules and Accent Discrimination in Texas Workplaces, UT CLE (May 21, 2021)

Author, Latinos and American Law, Univ. of Texas Press (2006)

Co-Author with Amy Clark-Meachum, The Common Law of Mexican Law in Texas Courts, 26 U. Hou. J. Int’l L. 119 (Fall 2003)

Carlos's Speaking Engagements

Speaker and Author, Attorneys’ Fees 2022, 45th Advanced Civil Trial Course 2022, State Bar of Texas, Houston, Texas, July 2022, Dallas, Texas, August 2022

Speaker with Tom Nesbitt and Co-Author with Ken Hughes, Trade Secret and Non-Compete Update, 29th Annual Labor & Employment Law Conference 2021, UT CLE, May 2022

Speaker and Lead Author, Vanessa A. Suarez (contributing) English-Only Rules and Accent Discrimination in Texas Workplaces, UT CLE May 21, 2021


Admissions

State Bar: Colorado, Texas

U.S. District Court: Texas (Eastern, Northern, Southern, Western)

U.S. Court of Appeals: Fifth Circuit

Education
  • Yale Law School
    • (1994, J.D.)

  • Yale University
    • (1991, B.A., History & Political Science)