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Clients laud Marie as a 'rare talent.' - Chambers USA 2012  
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Marie R. Yeates

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Yeates, Marie R.

Marie is a practice group leader of the firm-wide Appellate practice. The firm’s Appellate practice group was formed in 1991 and is acknowledged to be “one of the largest and strongest appellate groups in the state” by Chambers USA America’s Leading Lawyer for Business in 2006.

Marie has presented 100 appellate oral arguments in federal and state appellate courts across the country. Regarding Marie’s “ability to pull together the many strands of an argument,” clients report that “[w]atching the firm’s appellate star, Marie Yeates in action is ‘like watching someone conducting an orchestra.’Chambers USA 2005. Marie has been involved in the appeal of various types of litigation, including commercial disputes, business torts, oil and gas, securities law, class actions, tax, trade secrets, labor law, and condemnation.

Marie is recognized as a top-tier appellate lawyer with a reputation for thoroughness, perfectionism, and unparalleled preparation. According to Chambers USA 2009, Marie “is noted for her impressive advocacy and rapid grasp of the most complex issues.” Also, Marie “is a ‘go-to appellate expert,’ affirm clients, who value her ‘high level of excellence and hard-working approach.’Chambers USA 2008. In 2007, Chambers USA reported that clients view Marie as “‘incredibly tenacious and intensely focused,’ praising her reputation as a long-standing appellate lawyer with the accompanying experience. ‘She is a major force to be reckoned with.’” And, in Chambers USA 2006, “clients admired ‘the extremely smart’ Marie Yeates for her ‘intense dedication’ to her national appellate practice.” Chambers USA 2012 lauds Marie as a 'rare talent'  and according to one source, Marie is an 'outstanding appellate lawyer; very bright, very hard-working and known in particular for being meticulous.' This reputation is clearly widespread, with Marie described elsewhere as 'truly amazing' and someone who 'can take very complicated things and bring them together to form strong arguments.'

Since Chambers instituted its ranking for appellate lawyers in 2005, Marie has consistently been recognized, each year, in the top category (Band 1) of appellate litigators in Texas. From 2009 to 2012, Marie was also given a national ranking by Chambers in recognition of the nationwide breadth of her appellate practice. Further, The National Law Journal (December 17, 2001) named Marie as one of America's Top 50 Women Litigators.

Marie served as the Managing Partner of the Houston office from 2007 to 2014.

Representative Experience

Case Citations | View All
  • Obtained reversal, in the Texas Court of Appeals in Beaumont, of a $100 million judgment based on claims of business disparagement and tortious interference with prospective business relations
  • Obtained affirmance, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, of the district court’s judgment dismissing RICO claims brought by a county government which sought, as damages, its alleged increased cost for providing government services purportedly caused by the presence in the county of illegal aliens
  • Obtained ruling from the Texas Supreme Court unanimously striking down procedure used by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission that improperly lowered the rates at which Texas hospitals are reimbursed for providing Medicaid services
Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Education and Professional Background
  • Louisiana State University School of Law, J.D. first in class, 1980 (Order of the Coif; Editor-in-Chief, Louisiana Law Review)
  • Louisiana State University, B.S. Accounting summa cum laude, 1977 (Phi Kappa Phi; Alpha Beta Psi; Beta Gamma Sigma)
  • Judicial clerk to The Honorable Alvin B. Rubin, U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, 1980 - 1981
  • Admitted to practice: Louisiana, 1980; Texas, 1982; The United States Supreme Court; Texas Supreme Court; Louisiana Supreme Court; Fifth, Seventh, Eighth Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal; U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Northern Districts of Texas
Professional Recognition
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  • Houston Business Journal, Who’s Who in Energy, 2014
  • Named one of America's Top 250 women in litigation by Euromoney’s Benchmark Litigation, 2012 - 2014
  • Named one of the top 20 "Winning Women" litigation and appellate attorneys in Texas by Texas Lawyer, August 2011
Activities and Affiliations
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  • President-elect: Texas Supreme Court Historical Society, June 2013 - June 2014
  • Fellow: Trial Lawyer Honor Society, Litigation Counsel of America
  • American Academy of Appellate Lawyers (since 1997); Board Certified (since 1987) in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization; The Council of Appellate Lawyers; Texas Association of Civil Trial and Appellate Specialists; American Law Institute; Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation; American Bar Foundation; Houston Bar Foundation; American Bar Association
Publications and Presentations
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Solicitors and Registered Foreign Lawyers.  A list of partner names is available for inspection at CityPoint, One Ropemaker Street, London EC2Y 9UE.  Vinson & Elkins RLLP is a limited liability partnership formed under the laws of New York authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (No. 0079019). 

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Marie R. Yeates
1001 Fannin Street
Suite 2500
Houston, TX 77002-6760

Tel  +1.713.758.4576
Fax  +1.713.615.5544


Commercial and Business Litigation

Energy/Oil and Gas

Securities Litigation and Enforcement

Clients laud Marie as a 'rare talent.' - Chambers USA 2012