Castañeda Firm’s $145 Million Verdict Named to Texas Verdicts Hall of Fame

Chrysta Castañeda named to 2018 Texas Super Lawyers

Chrysta Castañeda

Mesa Petroleum Partners LP v. Baytech LLP, et al. is #2 Contracts Verdict, According to VerdictSearch

The $145 million verdict in Mesa Petroleum Partners LP v. Baytech LP, et al., handed down by a Pecos jury in November 2016 has been named to Texas Lawyer’s Texas Verdicts Hall of Fame, which recognizes the Lone Star State’s largest verdicts from 2014-2018, as reported by VerdictSearch.

The jury’s award was the second largest contracts verdict in the state during that time, according to VerdictSearch. Read more

Super Lawyers Selects Chrysta Castañeda

Super Lawyers 2019In the latest in a series of recognitions for litigator Chrysta Castañeda, the founder of The Castañeda Firm has been recognized on the annual list of Super Lawyers.

“This has been a wonderful year for me and my firm, and I’m grateful to my colleagues, clients and peers for making it possible,” said Ms. Castañeda. Read more

Chrysta Castañeda Honored at DBJ’s Women in Business Awards Luncheon

DBJ Women in Business BadgeThe Castañeda Firm founder Chrysta Castañeda was honored at the Dallas Business Journal’s 2019 Women in Business Awards on Aug. 21 at Dallas’ Fairmont Hotel. The award recognizes women for their outstanding professional achievements and contributions to the Dallas business community.

In addition to the luncheon, Ms. Castañeda and the other honorees were profiled in a special edition of the Dallas Business Journal. Her firm is also featured in a Digital Spotlight on the DBJ website. Read more

‘Chernobyl’ Finale was Great TV, and a Master Class in Presenting Complex Evidence

'Chernobyl' evidence presentation

Jared Harris as Valery Legasov in HBO’s “Chernobyl”

There was recently a smallish but nonetheless startling fire at the Castañeda household. There’s no use pointing fingers, but suffice it to say, mistakes were made. Fortunately, it was quickly doused and there was little damage. And, most importantly, nobody was hurt.

I have new a new perspective on such mishaps these days, after having watched HBO’s “Chernobyl,” a five-part miniseries that dramatically re-enacts the 1986 explosion of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor in the former Soviet Union, as well as the trial of those accused of causing it.

Watching the miniseries yields important lessons on how to present scientific evidence at trial. Read more

D Magazine Selects Chrysta Castañeda for 2019 ‘Best Lawyers in Dallas’

D Magazine Best Lawyers in Dallas 2019D Magazine has again named Chrysta Castañeda to its annual list of the Best Lawyers in Dallas for her work in commercial litigation.

Since launching her own firm in 2014, Ms. Castañeda has been honored with numerous awards, including a prestigious Elite Trial Lawyers recognition from The National Law Journal, as well as winning one of the country’s largest jury verdicts of 2016 in Mesa Petroleum Partners v. Baytech et al. She has also been previously recognized by D Magazine, named as one of the country’s top lawyers by Super Lawyers, and received the “Women in Energy” Award from Texas Lawyer in 2016. Read more

SCOTX May Look for New Evidence to Rewrite Your Contract

Oilfield ContractsLitigators – and probably most non-litigators – believe that a case is tried and decided on the evidence introduced at trial. But what about the evidence that is introduced after the appellate court gets the case? What about new evidence that the Texas Supreme Court allows into the record – evidence you had no opportunity to rebut and never even thought about?

Never heard of this phenomenon? Don’t know about this risk? The issue has flipped several recent cases in the oil and gas industry.

Read more

National Law Journal Names Chrysta Castañeda to 2018 Elite Trial Lawyers List

Chrysta Castañeda has been awarded The National Law Journal’s Elite Trial Lawyers Award for 2018.

The Elite Trial Lawyers award recognizes exemplary performance in the courtroom, according to NLJ. The publication’s editors and reporters reviewed about 300 submissions across 23 categories to select the winners. Ms. Castañeda’s profile is available here (subscription required).

One of Ms. Castañeda’s most notable recent victories was a $146 million verdict on behalf of T. Boone Pickens and Mesa Petroleum, which was recognized as one of the largest in the nation in 2016 by NLJ and one of the largest in Texas by Texas Lawyer.

Read more

New Courts: New Legal Landscape?

Blue Wave VoterOn November 6, the Blue Wave hit Texas like a tsunami. You didn’t hear? Perhaps you are not a close follower of the Texas courts of appeals. Democrats took control of the Houston, Dallas, Austin and San Antonio courts of appeal. The change is historic: these courts have been controlled by Republicans for the past two decades.

What impact could this have for businesses involved in litigation? Among other things, court watchers expect the following: Read more

Texas Super Lawyers Recognizes Chrysta Castañeda on 2018 List of Outstanding Lawyers

Chrysta Castañeda named to 2018 Texas Super Lawyers

Chrysta Castañeda

Congratulations to Chrysta Castañeda for being selected to the 2018 Texas Super Lawyers list of outstanding Texas attorneys.

Ms. Castañeda, the founding partner of The Castañeda Firm, focuses on oil and gas litigation in the upstream sector, as well as commercial litigation and products liability disputes involving technical evidence. A former engineer, she frequently represents operators, working interest owners, mineral owners and investors on contract and operational questions. She has also served as national coordinating counsel for products manufacturers in products liability and toxic tort claims. Read more

How to Beat the Pros in Court

David vs. GoliathYou’ve probably had your share of “Best Lawyers” and “Super Lawyers” tell you about their selection in the past several months. While I’m pleased to be recognized on several such lists, what I really want to convey to my up-and-coming colleagues is this: Don’t be intimidated by those who have a lot of accolades, or even decades in the chair. There is no head-to-head matchup behind these marketing awards that determines who is the “best” lawyer.

While experience and expertise cannot be bought, information is free. Here are a few free tips to help the less experienced or less-connected attorney out-do the opposition in a courtroom battle. Read more