MILLARD A. JOHNSON
Phone: (713) 652-2525
Fax: (713) 652-5130
Protection and Defense of Trade Secrets/Intellectual Property/Unfair Competition
Electronic Data Security and Privacy Rights
Merchant Processing and Electronic Payments
Land Use and Eminent Domain
Developers and Real Estate Lending Litigation
Insurance Coverage Litigation/Bad Faith
Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
Mass Tort Actions
Common Carrier and Transportation
A native of Texas, Millard has been practicing law for almost 39 years. While the focus of his practice is commercial litigation, he has recognized subject matter competence in land use and commercial real estate litigation, insurance coverage disputes, and complex payment systems litigation. But, to be sure, there is no type of civil litigation matter Millard hasn’t handled successfully. He has experience in First Amendment defense cases, oil and gas litigation, including Joint Operating Agreements, pipe and pipeline disputes, banking and financial institution litigation, he has handled cases involving Delaware law on indemnification of officers and directors, as well as disputes involving litigation funding. He has experience in condemnation matters on behalf of both condemnor and condemnee. He also has handled probate litigation, administrative and regulatory agency claims, and even criminal and divorce proceedings. Finally, he represented large banks and financial services companies in a wide variety of litigation matters.
Because of the breadth of his litigation experience, he has also acted as counselor to a variety of business clients seeking business advice and development of strategy, and has been called upon to assist with the purchase and sale of businesses.
Millard is recognized for his capability to handle complex litigation and develop strategies for success. He has the knowledge and experience to not only work within the complex, inter-linked moving parts that make up the landscape of legal disputes. He is routinely sought out by other attorneys, both inside and outside of the firm, for his counsel on all types of cases.
In fact, a substantial portion of Millard’s practice is in the representation of other attorneys who seek his assistance.
Millard’s substantial jury trial experience provides him with a major advantage in litigation, as well as to help his clients proactively avoid litigation. With an outstanding record, including numerous successful jury trials, Millard is a recognized face in the broader Houston area’s courthouses. He is well respected as an attorney who maintains productive professional relationships with many of the judges, and comes to court well prepared with solid, defendable arguments.
Millard also has considerable experience arguing appellate matters in Texas courts having argues in most of the Texas Courts of Appeals, as well as the Texas Supreme Court. He also has had several appellate arguments before the United States Court of Appeals, and while he did not get to argue the case (because no oral argument was scheduled) he has successfully defended a case in the United States Supreme Court of which is his proudly a member of the Bar.
Millard has been named one of Texas’ Super Lawyers® by Key Professional Media, as published in Texas Monthly magazine on ten occasions – most recently in 2021. He was selected based upon stringent nomination criteria and a rigorous vetting process, placing him in the top 5% of lawyers in the state of Texas. He has been AV rated for more than 25 years by Martindale-Hubbell. He has also been awarded the distinction of being a Top Rated Lawyer in Texas by Martindale-Hubble
Highlights since 2012
– Top 15 Jury Verdict in Texas – 2020
– Top 100 Jury Verdict in the United States – 2020
– Oral Argument in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
– Oral Argument in the Texas Supreme Court
– Oral Argument in the First Court of Appeals
– Oral Argument in the Second Court of Appeals
– Oral Argument in the Third Court of Appeals
– Oral Argument in the Fourteenth Court of Appeals (in two separate cases)
– Appeal without argument in the Sixth Court of Appeals
– Appeal without argument in the Ninth Court of Appeals
– Multiple multi-million dollar verdicts and judgments in cases tried to conclusion:
Specifically as lead counsel,
– Successfully defended against a $32 million dollar claim and obtained a $4 plus million dollar verdict and judgment in 2020 in favor of an Operator in a dispute with non-operators involving joint interest billings in an oil and gas project and for breaches of fourteen Joint Operating Agreements following a two week trial
– Successfully argued in 2019 before the 2nd Court of Appeals in Fort Worth an appeal to reverse the lower court on the issue of deemed determinative admissions relating to a case where the attorney in question was suffering from health disability
– Obtained 12(b)(1) dismissal of fraud-based claims in franchisor-franchisee action in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division.
– Successfully defended a litigation funding company against claims by a nationally renowned plaintiff’s firm and obtained multi-million dollar judgment involving complex payment issues related to electronic lending transactions after 29 trial days over 6 months
– Successful trial and defense of appeal on behalf of Appellee affirming trial court’s decision confirming grant of indemnification under Delaware law to former officer of company. Sandt v. Energy Maint. Servs. Grp. I, LLC, 534 S.W.3d 626, 637 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 2017, pet. denied).
– Obtained 12(b)(6) dismissal in 2018 for attorney client in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi, Greenville Division
– Successfully represented a major payment systems provider in a private arbitration proceeding to protect its website integrity and to prevent prohibited use by unscrupulous payments aggregators
– Successfully tried to a jury a large attorneys’ fee award in which the fees sought were also part of the damages claim. Then, defended the jury verdict in a successful appeal on behalf of Appellee affirming trial court’s decision confirming grant of indemnification to officer of company
– Obtained a directed verdict in Federal Court in the Rio Grande Valley on behalf of a major local utility company defendant after two weeks in trial before a jury
– Appeared and presented before the Hidalgo County Commissioners’ Court on behalf of a major local utility in connection with the Court’s improper abandonment of an easement
– Negotiated and documented the sale of a local utility company to a major competitor
– Obtained dismissal for lack of personal jurisdiction in California Superior Court for a local Texas client
– Successfully obtained a disqualification of a prominent Oklahoma law firm on the basis of a conflict of interest
– As special counsel for Debtor, successfully challenged multiple substantial claims in assisting obtaining a confirmed Chapter 11 plan of reorganization
– Successfully tried to a jury verdict a multi-million dollar dispute between the operator of the iconic Flagship Hotel against Landry’s, Inc.
– Successfully obtained a dismissal of a FINRA arbitration for the institution’s failure to comply with arbitrator’s orders
– Successfully negotiated a settlement in a complex multi-party franchise dispute with a national franchisor, the SBA lender, purported partners, the predecessor franchisor and third party claimants resulting in a multi-million dollar benefit to client
* Prudential Insurance Company of America, Petitioner, v. Billy W. Brown, Respondent; No. 90-1844; In the Supreme Court of the United States, October Term, 1991.
* Texaco Inc. vs. Pennzoil Company; No. 01-86-00216-CV; In the Court of Appeals for the First Supreme Judicial District of Texas; On Appeal from the 151st District Court of Harris County, Texas.
* SpeedPay, Inc. v. BillGo, Inc.; Civil Action No. 2:19-cv-20274-CCC-ESK; In the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey.
* David H. Berg & Associates, PC d/b/a Berg & Androphy v. Virage Capital Partners SPC et al., Cause No. 2016-58408; In the 295th District Court of Harris County, Texas.
* Sandt v. Energy Maint. Servs. Grp. I, LLC, 534 S.W.3d 626, 637 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 2017, pet. denied).
* Landry’s Restaurants, Inc. and Willie G’s Post Oak, Inc. v. The Flagship Hotel, Ltd,; No. 08CV1286; In the 405th District Court of Galveston County, Texas.
* In the Matter of: Bristol Resources 1994 Acquisition Limited Partnership; Bristol Resources Corporation; Bristol Production Corporation, L.L.C., Stephen E. Jackson, et al., Appellants, v. Nifuel Company, Inc. formerly known as Nipsco Fuel Company, Inc.; Case No. 02-40994; In the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit; On Appeal from the United States District Court, Southern District of Texas, Corpus Christi Division.
* The Houston Business Journal, Inc. and Dee Gill v. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency; No 93-2842; In the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
* Transamerica Occidental Life Insurance Company v. Jimmy W. Grider; No. 91-6288; In the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit;; On Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division.
* Texas Gulf Trust Company v. Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America; In the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, No. CV-87-6111; On Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas.
* Tesoro Marine Services, Inc., and Coastwide Marine Services, Inc. v. Four Brothers Boat Works, Inc., Columbia Star, Inc. and Billy B, Inc; No. 07-0231; In the Supreme Court of Texas; On petition from the Court of Appeals for the Fourteenth District of Texas, Houston, Texas.
* Marist College v. William Nicklin and Alex, Brown & Sons, Incorporated; No. 95-0772; In the Supreme Court of Texas; On Appeal from the First Court of Appeals, No. 01-94-0849-CV and From the 234th Judicial District Court of Harris County, Texas, Cause No. 93-08661.
* California Insurance Guarantee Association and Wisconsin Insurance Security Fund v. Honorable James W. Mehaffy; Cause No. 94-1201; In the Supreme Court for the State of Texas;.
* Wendell Watson v. TeleCheck Services, Inc. and TRS Recovery Services, Inc.; No. 06-08-00018-CV; In the Sixth Court of Appeals at Texarkana; Appealed from the 123rd Judicial District Court of Panola County, Texas.
* F. Alan “Bud” Frick, Butler & Cook, Inc. d/b/a Butler and Cook, Inc. et al. v. Total Separation Solutions, LLC; No. 14-07-00290-CV; In the Court of Appeals, Fourteenth District of Texas at Houston On Appeal from the 215th Judicial District Court of Harris County, Texas.
* City of Hedwig Village Planning and Zoning Commission and S. Frank White v. Howeth Investments, Inc. and Jack Howeth as Trustee for the 881 Brogden Trust and the 901 Brogden Trust, Assignees of Howeth Investments, Inc.; No. 01-01-00631-CV; In the Court of Appeals for the First Judicial District at Houston, Texas; On Appeal from the 189th Judicial District Court, Harris County, Texas.
U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas
University of Houston Law Center, Houston, Texas, J.D. 1983, cum laude
University of Houston, Houston, Texas, B.A. 1980, magna cum laude
Honors and Awards
Texas’ Super Lawyers® 2008-11, 2017-2021
25 years AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell
Top Lawyer – Martindale Hubble – 2010-2021
Texas Mortgage Lending Institute Annual Seminar – Speaker 2007
Felton F. Waggoner Award, Deer Park ISD Foundation – Recipient 2006
Profiled in Texas Bar Journal, “I Love My Lawyer,” April 2003
Houston Bar Association Lunch CLE Program – Speaker, “Strategies and Pitfalls in
the Jury Charge Conference”
Board of Advocates – Associate Justice 1983
Admissions Committee of the UH Law School – Student Member
International Academy of Trial Attorneys Award, 1983
Region 8, National Trial Competition – Coordinator
Deer Park High School Hall of Honor – Member
Order of the Barons
Phi Delta Phi
Phi Kappa Phi
Professional Associations and Memberships
State Bar of Texas – Member
Houston Bar Association – Member
University of Houston Alumni Organization – Life Member
University of Houston Law Foundation Board of Directors – Member
University of Houston Law Alumni Organization Board of Directors – Member
Committee to Design New Harris County Civil Courts Building – HBA Representative 2002-2004
Timbergrove National Baseball League – Longtime baseball coach