Kelli M. Hinson
Ms. Hinson is the hiring partner at Carrington Coleman and leads the firm's professional liability practice group. She works primarily in the area of business litigation and has extensive experience in professional liability matters, including legal malpractice defense, attorney sanctions, medical malpractice defense, director and officer liability, and disputes concerning non-compete covenants, misappropriation, and other issues relating to the hiring, dismissal, or departure of employees.
Ms. Hinson has successfully represented commercial clients on a number of significant matters, including representing officers and directors of public companies against claims including fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and conspiracy; obtaining a reversal of an $88 million judgment based on alleged shareholder oppression and breach of contract; and winning take-nothing summary judgments for defendants in numerous cases including a legal malpractice action against a major international law firm in which the plaintiffs sought up to $54.3 million in damages, and a federal Oil Pollution Act case in which the plaintiff sought over $38 million in cleanup costs.
Ms. Hinson also has represented her clients at the appellate level, submitting briefs and presenting oral argument before numerous courts, including the Dallas and Fort Worth Courts of Appeals and the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
From 2005 through 2011, Ms. Hinson was named by Texas Monthly magazine as a "Rising Star" in Texas law in the area of business litigation, and in 2012 she was named as one of the state’s “Super Lawyers.”
“We work on really interesting cases that require novel and creative thought. I get to debate complex legal issues with other smart lawyers. I am always learning things…every new case, new client, or new area of the law.”
Legal Malpractice Defense
Obtained summary judgment in bankruptcy court on a legal malpractice claim against a large international law firm arising out of alleged malpractice in connection with out-of-court restructuring negotiations and bankruptcy. The court found that plaintiff’s fraud claims were an impermissible attempt to fracture its malpractice claims and held that the rest of plaintiff’s claims were barred by the doctrines of res judicata and judicial estoppel. The summary judgment was affirmed on appeal to the district court.
Represented two attorneys in federal court in a case alleging RICO violations, fraud, and other causes of action arising out of an alleged conspiracy between certain lawyers and chiropractors to defraud the plaintiff insurance company in connection with personal injury claims. Plaintiff dismissed our two attorney clients before it was required to respond to the attorneys’ motion to dismiss.
Defended lawyers and law firms against potential claims by bankruptcy trustees after the law firms’ clients filed for bankruptcy.
Represented a large Texas law firm in a case involving alleged malpractice by the firm’s estate planning attorneys. Plaintiff alleged that the attorneys failed to recommend that his mother form a Family Limited Partnership to reduce her estate taxes. The parties reached a confidential settlement.
Medical Malpractice Defense
Obtained dismissal for the Chairman of the Board of a national hospital organization in a medical malpractice case. The jury later awarded over $22 million against the remaining defendant.
Obtained dismissal for hospital defendant (affirmed on appeal) in a medical malpractice case alleging that the doctor’s and the hospital’s negligence during patient’s labor resulted in injury to a newborn baby.
In a case alleging sexual assault by a healthcare provider, obtained a partial summary judgment for the hospital on the basis that the sexual assault, if it occurred, was not within the course and scope of the healthcare provider’s employment with the hospital.
Non-Compete and Trade Secret Litigation
Represented an insurance brokerage company in an “employee raiding” case in which the leading producer and regional manager left the company with ten other employees to form the Dallas office of a competing company. The parties reached a confidential settlement after we obtained a temporary restraining order against the former employees.
Represented three consultants who were sued by their former employer for breach of fiduciary duty and usurpation of corporate opportunities. The Court entered a take-nothing judgment against the plaintiff after a bench trial.
Other Commercial Cases
Obtained reversal of an $88 million judgment in a case brought by a minority shareholder alleging shareholder oppression, malicious suppression of dividends, breach of contract, and derivative claims against the majority shareholder. The Dallas Court of Appeals reversed and rendered, ordering that plaintiff take nothing.
Obtained reversal of a class certification in Fort Worth in a case involving an alleged agreement to pay bonuses for the execution of oil and gas leases.
Represented a major airline in a construction dispute in which the contractor alleged over $17 million in damages. The parties reached a confidential settlement after the airline prevailed on numerous pre-trial motions.
Represented officers and directors against claims for breach of fiduciary duty, negligence, fraud, fraudulent transfers, and other claims arising out of the bankruptcy of a large food distribution company. The plaintiff sued 26 defendants, asserted 27 causes of action, and sought in excess of $300 million in alleged damages. The parties reached a confidential settlement.
Represented a publicly-traded oil and gas company in an oil pollution case filed by a land-owner seeking over $38 million in alleged clean up costs under the federal Oil Pollution Act. The district court granted summary judgment, which was affirmed on appeal to the Fifth Circuit, on the grounds that the discharges of oil and salt water about which the plaintiff complained were not discharges into “navigable waters” and, therefore, were not covered by the Oil Pollution Act.