Brice Wilkinson focuses his practice on complex commercial litigation. He has successfully represented clients in various industries, including oil and gas, computer software, healthcare, private equity, and automotive. Brice has experience in breach of contract, trade secrets, antitrust, fiduciary duty, products liability, class actions, federal computer statutes (including the CFAA, DMCA, and Copyright Act), and other business tort matters. Brice also has appellate experience in state and federal courts.
Following law school, Brice was a law clerk to Judge Raymond M. Kethledge, United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, from 2010 to 2011.
In college, Brice was a three-year starting offensive lineman on the Yale football team.
Ongoing Matter: Oil & Gas Trade Secrets Case
Sanchez Oil & Gas et al. v. Terra Energy Partners et al.
Representing Sanchez in a trade secret and breach of fiduciary duty case against Terra and three individuals. Sanchez obtained a temporary restraining order and temporary injunction. The matter is pending. Obtained two favorable interlocutory appellate rulings to date:
In re Terra Energy Partners, LLC, 01-17-00137-CV, 2017 WL 4782533 (Tex. App.—
Houston [1st Dist.] Oct. 24, 2017)
Reynolds v. Sanchez Oil & Gas Corp., 617 S.W.3d 30 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.]
2020, pet. filed)
Ongoing Matter: Federal Multidistrict Litigation Involving Antitrust, Intellectual Property, and Computer Trespass Claims and Counterclaims
In re Dealer Management Systems Antitrust Litigation
Representing The Reynolds & Reynolds Company in ongoing MDL involving competing claims among and between various stakeholders regarding access to data and computer systems in the automotive industry. The lead plaintiff, Authenticom, has asserted that our client engaged in anticompetitive “blocking” that prevented Authenticom from accessing our client’s computer systems on behalf of dealers and other software providers. Our client has asserted counterclaims against Authenticom under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Copyright Act, and various related state-law claims. Various related claims have also been asserted in the MDL, which involves a number of other parties and several putative classes. The matter currently remains pending in the Northern District of Illinois.
Jury Trial Win in High-Dollar Trade Secrets Case
FMC Technologies vs. Richard Murphy and Dril-Quip
Represented Richard Murphy, a subsea tree engineer, in a misappropriation of trade secrets case brought by FMC Technologies, his former employer, against Mr. Murphy and Mr. Murphy’s new employer, Dril-Quip. FMC Technologies sought almost $40 million in damages and an injunction against both Mr. Murphy and Dril-Quip. After a three-week trial, the jury ruled entirely in favor of Mr. Murphy and Dril-Quip, finding that FMC did not prove the existence of any alleged trade secrets. The First Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court victory, August 2023.
Successful Motion to Dismiss in High-Profile Defamation Case
Michael Feinberg v. KIPP, Inc. et al.
Represented KIPP, Inc., a charter school network, and the KIPP Foundation, a nonprofit organization that raises funds for KIPP schools, in a defamation suit brought by Michael Feinberg, a co-founder and former executive of KIPP. Mr. Feinberg was terminated from both organizations following an independent investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct, and he alleged that KIPP made defamatory statements in connection with his termination. KIPP moved to dismiss pursuant to the Texas Citizens Participation Act (“TCPA”), and the trial court granted the motion and dismissed all claims.
Dispositive Motion Victories in Automotive Class Actions
Verde v. FTE Automotive USA, Inc. et al.
Royal v. FTE Automotive USA, Inc. et al.
Represented FTE, a tier-one automotive supplier, in a series of putative class actions in Texas and Oklahoma federal court alleging breach of warranty and other product liability theories. We successfully moved to dismiss the Oklahoma action (based primarily on timeliness issues), and we successfully moved for an early summary judgment in the Texas action (based primarily on successor liability issues related to the Chrysler bankruptcy).
Partial Summary Judgment in Breach of Contract Case for Oil and Gas Leases and Pipeline Assets
SM Energy Company, et al. v. Endeavour Operating Corporation
Represented SM Energy Company, Potato Creek LLC, Open Flow Gas Supply Corporation, and SJ Exploration LLC in an action against Endeavour Operating Corporation. The case arose from Endeavour Operating Corporation’s breach of two purchase and sale agreements to purchase our clients’ interests in oil and gas leases, a pipeline, and related facilities in the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania for a total purchase price of $110 million. After winning a significant partial summary judgment establishing the validity of the challenged leases, the case settled shortly before trial for a total value of $19.25M to our clients.
Successful Defense of Investors and Former Board Chair Following Medical Device Company Acquisition
Abbott Laboratories and Abbott Vascular, Inc. v. Christopher M. Owens, et al.
Represented three private equity healthcare funds and their managing director in a fraud case brought by Abbott Laboratories and Abbott Vascular, Inc. related to Abbott’s acquisition of IDEV, Inc., a medical device company specializing in vascular stents. The private equity funds had been the largest shareholder of the company and the managing director had been the chairman of the IDEV board prior to Abbott’s acquisition. Shortly after closing, Abbott learned that a letter from the FDA potentially affecting the company’s key stent technology had not been disclosed by IDEV’s former CEO. Abbott sued the CEO and our clients in Delaware Superior Court, alleging that they had committed fraud and conspired to commit fraud by concealing the FDA letter. IDEV’s CEO had never disclosed the FDA letter to our clients either. We successfully moved to dismiss all of Abbott’s claims against our clients on that ground. The Delaware court held that Abbott failed to allege any plausible basis to conclude that our clients had any pre-closing knowledge of the letter. Abbott declined to appeal the dismissal of its claims against our clients.
Successful Motion to Dismiss on Antitrust Claims for Automotive Software Provider
The Reynolds & Reynolds Company v. Superior Integrated Solutions, Inc.
Represented a major provider of automotive dealership management systems in federal litigation involving claims of copyright infringement, complex antitrust issues, tortious interference with contracts and other issues. We successfully moved to dismiss the antitrust and other counterclaims alleged against its client and the case later settled amicably.
Successful Arbitration Defense of Healthcare Private Equity Organization
Represented several managing partners and directors of several private equity funds in an arbitration against another managing director with whom they had fallen out. Following roughly 8 months of discovery and a week-long arbitration, the arbitrator denied every claim against our clients and ruled in our favor on nearly all of our counterclaims. Among other things, the final award found that the opposing partner should be retroactively terminated for cause due to his willful misconduct, ordered that the partner pay back all compensation he had received during that period, and awarded our clients nearly all of their attorneys’ fees in the matter.
Favorable Settlement for Natural Gas Pipeline Client
Peregrine Pipeline Company, L.P. v. ETC Texas Pipeline, Ltd.
Represented the Texas subsidiary of a large natural gas pipeline company in an arbitration dispute brought by the seller of a pipeline against our client. At the end of a four-day arbitration hearing, the matter settled for a small fraction of the amount claimed on terms favorable to our client.
Summary Judgment Victory in Defense of Former Officers and Directors
Atrex, Inc. v. Balun et al.
Served as lead counsel representing several former officers and directors of a cable company, TVMAX. A service provider attempted to sue them, claiming that the company had forfeited its corporate charter due to failure to pay franchise taxes, rendering them individually liable for the debt. Expedited discovery established that the forfeiture and tax delinquency had occurred some time after our clients’ departure from the company, and we successfully moved for summary judgment on that basis.
University of Texas, J.D., with highest honors, 2010
Order of the Coif
Editor in Chief, Texas Law Review
The University of Edinburgh, MTh, with distinction, 2007
Yale University, B.A., cum laude, 2006
Listed in The Best Lawyers in America
Litigation – Antitrust, 2024
Named in Benchmark Litigation, 2022-2024
”40 & Under” List, 2022-2024
Named to Lawdragon Guides
“500 Leading Litigators in America,” 2023-2024
“500 Leading Energy Lawyers,” 2024
Named in Legal 500 US, Recommended in Energy Litigation – Oil & Gas, 2019
Named a “Texas Rising Star” by Thomson Reuters’ Texas Super Lawyers, 2018-2020
State Bar of Texas
United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Houston Bar Association, Member
Texas Law Review Association, Board Member (2020-2021)