Brannon believes strongly that lawyers are advocates for their clients. Fighting for a client requires that an attorney understand their needs and wishes. And to do that, they have to be a good listener. Lawyers perform many functions, , but really listening to clients and understanding their goals is among the most important.
After spending more than 15 years at an international 800-lawyer firm, Brannon joined Fernelius Simon in 2015. He believed that Fernelius Simon’s boutique environment would give him the opportunity to work more closely with his clients and better serve their needs. He’s happy to say that’s exactly what it’s done. “Winning a lawsuit is just one step in a process,” he says. “Close contact with my clients helps me determine how the lawsuit fits into their overall needs.”
Working with both plaintiffs and defendants, Brannon keeps a wide practice in matters related to business disputes, personal injuries, environmental litigation, construction disputes, toxic torts, arbitration, and product liability. Regardless of the area, Brannon has developed a reputation for quickly learning the facts of a case, and devising a strategy to accomplish client goals as efficiently as he can. Those who have worked with Brannon all agree that he’s an attorney you want on your team.
Brannon was recognized by Thomson Reuters as a Texas Super Lawyer in 2017 and 2018, as well as a Texas Rising Star in 2005, 2007-2008 and 2011, as published in Texas Monthly.
Representative Commercial Matters
Represented an oil & gas exploration and production company in an arbitration against an international bank concerning its lending practices. Recovered a high seven-figure settlement for the client.
Assisted an oilfield-services company in recovering millions from high-level employees who engaged in a sophisticated and wide-ranging effort to steal the company’s assets and drive business to a competing company, which the employees secretly owned.
Represented a specialty-chemical maker that was sued for allegedly breaching contractual and fiduciary duties related to various shared-facility agreements. Served as lead lawyer at the AAA arbitration. The panel denied any recovery to the claimant and awarded $4 million to the client on its counterclaim.
Represented Texas and Louisiana gas-storage facility owners in multiple construction defect lawsuits.
Represented a large German real estate holding company in various U.S. real estate disputes, recovering approximately $10 million for the client.
Represented a foreign investment bank in a dispute regarding the sale of its $500 million gas-storage facility. Claims were brought against it by both the purchaser and the bank’s minority shareholders.
Represented a Malaysian E&P company that was refurbishing a drilling rig in a Galveston shipyard when it chose to cease work on the project. Numerous vendors providing services to the rig brought suit, claiming millions in damages. Represented the client in numerous lawsuits and arbitrations stemming from the claims, which resulted in the client successfully exiting its obligations for a fraction of the value of the outstanding claims.
Represented two Norwegian banks in a lawsuit involving a drilling rig on which the banks held a $30 million note. Won a summary judgment establishing that the banks were the superior lien holders on the vessel.
Representative Tort Matters
Won a summary judgment in a Kentucky mass-tort case involving more than 1,000 individuals claiming personal injury from groundwater, soil, and air contamination. The motion ended more than a decade of litigation for an international manufacturing company.
Represented a multinational petroleum company in a lawsuit brought by hundreds of minors who lived near refineries in Port Arthur, Texas. The plaintiffs claimed that the emissions from plant operations impaired their health and constituted a permanent nuisance. A Beaumont trial court dismissed the case on summary judgment.
Represented a major oil company whose crude-oil pipeline ruptured and spilled thousands of barrels of oil into the coastal waters of Louisiana. The case was tried in New Orleans federal court.
Represented a major oil company in multiple suits stemming from allegations that naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM) related to E&P activities had damaged the plaintiffs’ health and property. Was part of two trial teams in Mississippi state court.
Represented a multinational oil and gas company in property-damage lawsuits related to one of its legacy refineries in Montana.
Represented a multinational corporation in groundwater-contamination litigation in California stemming from its agricultural chemicals business.
Represented numerous petrochemical clients in premises-liability lawsuits stemming from asbestos, benzene, and vinyl-chloride exposure.
Defended energy clients in numerous wrongful-death and serious-injury cases stemming from refinery and oilfield accidents.
Represented numerous pharmaceutical clients and medical-device manufacturers in product-liability cases.
Secured a significant judgment in Brazoria County, Texas, in a wrongful-death lawsuit for the parents of a woman who was killed by her estranged husband.
Recovered a high-value settlement for the mother of a girl killed in a boating accident.
All Texas state courts
Texas Supreme Court
United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas
United States District Court for the Western District of Texas
United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
Professional Activities and Memberships
Texas Bar Foundation, Fellow
Houston Bar Foundation, Fellow
Serves in numerous capacities for the United Way and other charities
Honors and Awards
Best Law Firms – U.S. News – 2018, Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions-Defense
Texas Super Lawyer by Thomson Reuters, 2017, 2018
Texas Rising Stars by Thomson Reuters, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2011
Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Member
Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Member
1997-1999 – Law Clerk, the Honorable Nancy Johnson, United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas
1997 – Juris Doctor, The University of Texas at Austin School of Law
1994 – Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, Baylor University