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Steve is widely respected throughout the Southwest for his background and expertise in construction law. With a background as a licensed architect and a practice that spans construction, real-estate related transactions, and litigation, Steve is first and foremost a problem-solver. He guides clients – general contractors, subcontractors, architects, engineers, developers, and owners – through critical decisions, whether in contract negotiation or litigation. As a neutral on the American Arbitration Association’s list of construction arbitrators, Steve is sought out by third parties to serve as the final decision-maker in construction disputes.

Steve is a trusted advisor to clients in construction contract disputes, mechanic’s and materialman’s liens, payment bond claims, and insurance coverage issues. An authority on Texas mechanic’s and materialman’s lien law, he has co-authored two of the leading books on the topic.

Steve is named to the Texas Super Lawyers list by Thomson Reuters as published in Texas Monthly, as well as Best Lawyers in America. He is rated AV Preeminent by LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell. In addition, he was in the inaugural class of lawyers to obtain board certification in construction law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

  • Obtained reversal of judgment against general contractor for $1.4 million in connection with subcontractor claim for concealed conditions.; reported case: Millgard Corp. v. McKee/Mays,49 F3d 1070 (5th Circuit 1995)
  • Acted as local counsel for international construction company in insurance coverage dispute involving multi-million-dollar claim for thousands of personal injury claims related to mold in an elementary school
  • Represented national engineering firm in defense of multi-million dollar engineering negligence claim, resulting in settlement by client to payment of a nominal amount
  • Provided pro bono legal services to Dallas Bar Association in connection with architectural and construction contract negotiations and contract administration for $11 million addition to Dallas Bar Association headquarters and conference facility.
  • Worked with state Rep. Burt Solomons on substantial revisions to the Texas Property Code mechanic’s and materialman’s lien law passed by Texas 75th Legislature
  • Represented national telecom and cable company in defense of subcontractor claim in excess of $700,000, obtaining settlement after commencement of trial by payment of only nominal damages
  • Represented general contractor in defense of claims in excess of $20 million by condominium HOA for alleged defective construction, obtaining a favorable settlement
  • J.D., Southern Methodist University, 1987
  • B.Arch., University of Arkansas, 1980
  • State Bar of Texas
    • Construction Law Section
  • American Bar Association
    • ABA Construction Law Forum
  • Dallas Bar Association
    • Dallas Bar Construction Law Section – Governing Counsel, Vice Chair 2013, Chair 2014, 2015
  • College of the State Bar of Texas
  • Member, American Arbitration Association Construction Panel of Neutrals
  • Texas Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, published in Texas Monthly, 2013 – 2023
  • Rated AV Preeminent by LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell
  • Legal Leaders/Top Rated Lawyers, ALM and Martindale-Hubbell
  • Best Lawyers in America, Lawyer of the Year – Construction Litigation, 2022
  • Best Lawyers in America, Construction Law, 2016 – 2024
  • Best Lawyers in America, Litigation – Construction, 2018 -2024
  • Board Certified in construction law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization
  • Co-author, Texas Lien and Bond Claims Handbook, published by the Dallas Bar Construction Law Section.
  • Co-author, O’Connor’s Property Code Plus, published by Jones McClure Publishing
  • Speaker, “Perfecting a Public Bond Claim: State and Federal” and “Recent Developments in Construction Lien Law,” presented annually for Lorman Education Services since 1996
  • Speaker, “Mechanic’s and Materialman’s Liens, an Overview and Guide to Recent Changes,” 13th Annual Construction Law Conference, Feb. 17, 2000
  • Speaker, “Indemnity and Insurance for Contractors,” Lorman Education Services, Nov. 2, 2000
  • Speaker, “Texas Mechanic’s Lien Law – Beyond the Basics,” 15th Annual Construction Law Conference, Feb. 15, 2002
  • Speaker, “Sources of Payment for Contract Claims and Third-Party Liability,” Lorman Education Services, Feb. 28, 2003
  • Speaker, “Texas Mechanic’s Lien Law Update,” 18th Annual Construction Law Conference, March 2005
  • Speaker, “AIA A201 General Conditions – Comments, Tips and Traps,” 2005 Advanced Real Estate Drafting Course, March 2005
  • Speaker, “Texas Mechanic’s Lien Law – The Basics,” Texas Institute for Continuing Legal Education, Basic Course in Texas Construction Law, October 6, 2005 and Oct. 17, 2008
  • Speaker, “The Basics and Beyond: Drafting and Negotiating Key Clauses in Construction Contracts,” The University of Texas School of Law Construction Law Conference, Sept. 2010
  • Speaker, “Theories of Liability Against Architects & Engineers,” The Basics Course in Texas Construction Law, Nov. 2011
  • Speaker, “Construction Liens: What’s New, What Can Hurt You,” The University of Texas School of Law Construction Law Conference, Sept. 2012
  • Speaker, “Mechanic’s Liens: Safe Harbors and Good Practices,” The University of Texas School of Law, Mortgage Lending Institute, Sept. 2013
  • Speaker, “Recent Revisions to the Mechanic’s Liens Statutes,” Dallas Bar Association Real Property Section, Sept. 2013