Business and Corporate Matters
The Firm handles business and corporate matters from start to finish for both for-profit and nonprofit corporations, in addition to sole proprietors. From forming business entities, developing complex business agreements, negotiating terms of purchases of businesses, handling commercial leases, and finally, everything involving dissolution of business entities whether handled through or outside the litigation process. Contracts are the key to business matters, and the firm has drafted contracts addressing real estate, commercial development, employment, partnership, litigation settlement, professional services, technical services, management services, franchises, licensing, environmental remediation, acquisitions and much more.
The Firm has provided legal services involving insurance matters including the following:
- Declaratory Judgment Actions To Determine Coverage
- Insurance Agency Defense
- Complex Insurance Litigation, Including Bad Faith
- Long-Haul Truckers Insurance Liability
- Texas Insurance Code Litigation
- Insurance Coverage
- Negligence As It Relates To Coverage
- Contribution & Indemnity
- Trust Fund Litigation
- Intervention Actions On Behalf Of Claimants
- Death Case Defense
- Coverage Opinions
- Representation of Defendant Insurance Companies
- Traffic Accident Litigation, Including Fatalities
- Property Claims
The Firm has handled a variety of matters in the energy arena. Representative matters include personal injury defense, including a case involving a heater treater explosion. Other matters included representing a pipeline inspection company on an OSHA death case, contract disputes, and development of MSAs and other contracts. William J. Brotherton of the Firm was personally involved in attempting to resolve the Dakota Access protest in North Dakota and worked closely with environmental engineering firms in an effort to address concerns about pipeline spills with the Standing Rock Sioux. Brotherton also led negotiation efforts with tribal leadership and traveled throughout the reservation to meet with leaders, tribal organizations, and members. Brotherton has also represented his tribe, the Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi, in regards to the sale and decommissioning of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant.
William also knows the energy business by firsthand experience. He worked as a roughneck in the Williston oil basin for over nine months in 1980, and also drove a Mack 20 speed tractor-trailer hauling water to the drilling mud makeup tanks.
The Firm has litigated highly complex transportation disputes. William J. Brotherton is very familiar with the transportation industry, having worked for nearly four years in the operating department of the Burlington Northern Railroad as a brakeman, conductor, and trainmaster. Further, he is a frequent contributor to Trains Magazine, the premier publication addressing national/international rail and transit issues. Besides writing frequently for Trains Magazine, he has also consulted with Trains Magazine on various legal issues associated with transit operations. In addition to rail transportation issues, the Brotherton Law Firm has handled transportation issues associated with trucking. The Brotherton Law Firm recently represented a client who over a four-year period, was a defendant in 32 separate lawsuits concerning insurance coverage for long-haul truckers involved in major accidents. This required a high level of detail in handling these very complicated lawsuits, involving regulations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the US Department of Transportation, and similar federal agencies.
The Firm provides environmental defense for businesses and individuals. William J. Brotherton of the Firm taught environmental law at Texas Christian University for over 12 years in the graduate environmental sciences program and has also taught environmental law programs at Texas Wesleyan University School of Law, The Center For Environmental Research And Training at the University of Texas at Arlington, the University of Texas at Dallas, and Lamar University. The Firm has provided representation related to the Clean Water Act, Superfund, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the Clean Air Act, and many other environmental regulatory arenas.
The Firm handles all construction matters, including contracts, disputes, mechanic's liens, and litigation. The Firm has represented general contractors, owners, subcontractors, and vendors in a variety of transactional issues and litigation, including cases where a death occurred. The Firm has also represented clients cited by OSHA and other federal or state agencies.
Labor and Employment
More and more, employers are being sued by their employees over hiring, firing, promotion, and discipline decisions. We will defend you if you are sued and advise and guide you through the maze of employment laws and regulations to help prevent lawsuits. Preparing employee handbooks, drafting employment agreements, protecting trade secrets, enforcing covenants not to compete, and dealing with federal and state regulatory administrative agencies are all part of the services provided by the Firm.
Every practice area the Firm engages in has the potential to become embroiled in litigation. The Firm believes in offering its clients the opportunity, through proactive measures, to avoid litigation if at all possible. Many times, that is not possible. In those cases, the Firm utilizes its significant experience in litigation to work towards achieving a prompt resolution of the issues, either through early motion practice, summary judgment, mediation, or final adjudication.
Real Estate/Land Use
The Firm handles all real estate matters, including sales, leasing, title issues and insurance, and all zoning matters, including special use permits. On many occasions, the purchase of a business involves the acquisition of real estate, and this provides just one example of where multiple disciplines work together within the Firm. William J. Brotherton served as a Flower Mound, Texas planning & zoning commissioner for over six years, and is very familiar with the intricacies of land development and zoning issues. The Firm also was affiliated with Fidelity National Title, Inc., for nine years as fee attorneys, and can handle all land title issues for both commercial and residential properties, developed or undeveloped.
The Firm handles all estate planning matters, including the development of wills, trusts, including living trusts and all documents necessary to provide peace of mind for the family. When a loved one dies, it is often necessary to probate or administer the estate planning documents, and this sometimes, unfortunately, leads to litigation when family members cannot agree on matters such as distribution. The probate section works closely with the civil litigation group in this regard.
The Firm has successfully defended a variety of administrative law cases involving OSHA and EEOC. Most recently the Firm successfully defended an oilfield services company that was given a “serious” citation when an employee suffered a broken leg. The company could not obtain new work with the citation being sustained so the Firm went to work, ultimately obtaining the dismissal of the citation with no fine. In its most recent EEOC case, a female employee alleged discriminatory actions against a pipeline company and the Firm was able to obtain a dismissal after a full hearing.
Both William J. Brotherton and John Neuhoff of the Firm are accomplished and experienced mediators with Mr. Neuhoff well-versed in mediating complex family law cases, having run for District Court judge in Dallas County and being formally board-certified in family law. Mr. Brotherton has mediated a variety of cases including contract disputes, business partitions and property damage/personal injury cases.