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Robert Schick

Robert M. Schick Partner, Commercial & Business Litigation

With more than 35 years of experience, Bob Schick is an accomplished litigator who has represented major corporations at the trial and appellate levels in jurisdictions across the country. His diverse practice includes clients from such industries as energy, chemicals, manufacturing and pharmaceuticals.

Bob has extensive experience in products liability, complex toxic torts and environmental litigation. He has taken on key roles in numerous high-profile cases, serving as a regional counsel for a global chemical company in an historic air pollution lawsuit involving more than 6,000 plaintiffs and representing an international mining company in a CERCLA Superfund case and an associated toxic tort class action. 

His products liability experience includes serving as the primary trial lawyer for a major pharmaceutical manufacturer in suits related to the use of prescription and over-the-counter drugs and as the lead national defense counsel for a building component manufacturer in eight statewide and two nationwide class actions.

For energy clients such as oil, gas and utility companies, Bob has tackled toxic exposure cases, contract disputes, down-hole equipment failure claims, partnership disputes, offshore personal injury and wrongful death suits, royalty disputes and landowner litigation.

His work has earned him glowing reviews, with clients telling Chambers USA that Bob is "an outstanding trial lawyer with great flair" and has "a comfortable style and easy way of relating to juries" (2019).

As one of the leading attorneys in his field, Bob is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, an honor awarded to the top one percent of lawyers in each state. He is also certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in civil trial law and personal injury trial law.

Experience Highlights

Energy-Related Cases

  • Represented clients in the oil and gas industry in a wide variety of cases including ones related to hydraulic fracturing, contract and partnership disputes as well as toxic exposure claims
  • (Tex. Dist. – Nueces Cnty.) – Represented working interest owners in a suit brought by landowners against the operator and interest owners alleging failure to drill and develop, royalty underpayment, and reservoir damage 
  • (Tex. Dist. – Potter Cnty.) – Represented a manufacturer of tubular products in a suit to recover damages from a massive well blowout 
  • (Tex. Dist. – Harris Cnty.) – Represented a general partner accused by limited partners of usurping partnership opportunities and self-dealing
  • (Colo. Dist. – Denver Cnty.) – Represented an E&P company in defense of claims of personal injury and property damage allegedly related to hydraulic fracturing 
  • Defended numerous cases involving allegations of breach of gas supply contracts, both onshore and offshore 

Product Liability Cases

  • Served as primary firm trial lawyer for a major pharmaceutical manufacturer in suits arising from the use of prescription and over-the-counter drugs 
  • (D. Or.) – Served as lead national counsel and trial lawyer for a company whose building component product was the subject of litigation asserted as statewide class actions in eight states and as two nationwide class actions; the nationwide suits were combined for settlement, seven of the statewide suits were dismissed, and one statewide suit was certified solely for settlement purposes; representation included defending three state attorney general inquiries 
  • Represented tire manufacturer in wrongful death and personal injury suits filed in multiple counties in Texas relating to rollover accidents and product recall; represented same client in similar litigation filed in Texas by residents of Mexico and Venezuela concerning accidents alleged to have occurred in their home countries
  • (Tex. Dist. – Starr Cnty.) – Defended a major truck manufacturer in the largest personal injury suit ever filed against the company, in which damages of more than $6 billion were sought for the deaths of nine people; received take-nothing verdict was rendered after a 2-month jury trial
  • (Tex. Dist. – Harris Cnty.) – Represented Italian valve manufacturer in lawsuit brought by American distributor in Harris County, Texas; claims and counterclaims involved DTPA and breach of contract, with both sides seeking damages and declaratory relief; after preliminary discovery and exchange of expert reports; case settled on favorable terms 

Environmental/Toxic Tort Cases

  • (Tex. Dist. – Harris Cnty.) – Served as regional counsel for a global chemical company in a lawsuit by over 6,000 plaintiffs alleging historic continuing air pollution; obtained a summary judgment for our client on approximately 3,000 claims, whereupon the remaining claims were settled on very favorable terms
  • (N.D. Ala.) – Represented a major international mining company in toxic tort cases, filed in federal court in Alabama, involving CERCLA contribution claims and involving property damage claims asserted as a class action 
  • (D. Colo.) – Served as lead trial lawyer for the primary potentially responsible party in a “Superfund” case 
  • (S.D. Tex.); (Tex. Dist. – Galveston Cnty.); (Tex. Dist. – Harris Cnty.) – Jointly defended a major agrichemical company in eight lawsuits filed in three Texas state and federal courts; these claims, arising out of a toxic release alleged to have spanned 40 years, were brought as a class action and individually by more than 200 plaintiffs opting out of the class 

Constitutional Law-Related Cases

  • Represents two worldwide Churches on a local and state level in matters usually giving rise to First Amendment issues 

Other Trial Work

  • (Tex. Dist. – Harris Cnty.) – Served as lead trial lawyer for an insurance company in several state and federal court cases in Texas arising from allegations by a plaintiff attorney and hundreds of his former clients that the insurance company had committed extortion and fraud in connection with a global settlement; the case settled during the second week of trial

Appellate

  • Over a decade of experience representing clients on appeal; in recent years has argued twice in the Texas Supreme Court and four times in the state Courts of Appeals


Contact Details

Houston

T +1.713.758.4582
F +1.713.615.5976
rschick@velaw.com
1001 Fannin Street
Suite 2500
Houston, TX 77002
Local time: 12:43 AM
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Bob's Practices

  • University of Houston Law Center, J.D., 1981 (Order of the Barons; Order of the Barristers)
  • Princeton University, A.B., 1976
  • Bob began his legal career at Vinson & Elkins upon graduating from law school in 1981. He was admitted to the Partnership in 1989 and served in various leadership positions, including 12 years on the firm’s Management Committee and several years as co-head of the firm’s Litigation Department. From 2014 until June 2017, Bob continued his litigation practice at Schick & Copeland. He is delighted and grateful to have returned to his roots.
  • The Best Lawyers in America© (Woodward/White, Inc.), "Lawyer of the Year" in Product Liability Litigation Defense (Houston), 2016 and 2020
  • The Best Lawyers in America© (Woodward/White, Inc.), Personal Injury Litigation, 2003–2006, 2008–2020; Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions, 2008–2020; Product Liability Litigation, 2008–2020; Commercial Litigation, 2019 and 2020
  • Selected to Thomson Reuters Texas Super Lawyers, 2003–2015, 2018 and 2019
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Business Lawyers in general commercial litigation, 2006 – 2014; in environmental law, 2010 – 2014
  • The International Who’s Who of Product Liability Defense Lawyers, 2013; The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers in product liability, 2009 (published by Law Business Research Ltd.)
  • The Legal 500 US: Volume III (Litigation) in product liability and mass tort defense: automotive/transport, 2007; in environmental litigation, 2010 – 2013
  • Euromoney’s Benchmark Litigation – Local Litigation Star: Texas, 2012 and 2013; 2017
  • Who’s Who Legal: Texas in product liability law, 2007 and 2008
  • Legal Media Group’s (Euromoney’s) Guide to the World’s Leading United States Litigation Lawyers, 2005
  • Recipient of the “Private Sector Achievement Award” by University of Houston Law Center Alumni Association, 2015
  • Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law and Civil Trial Law by Texas Board of Legal Specialization
  • Member: State Bar of Texas
  • Member: Texas State Courts
  • Member: U.S. District Courts for the Southern, Eastern, Western and Northern Districts of Texas
  • Affiliated: Defense Research Institute; Texas Association of Defense Counsel; International Association of Defense Counsel
  • Sustaining member of Product Liability Advisory Council
  • Fellow: Texas Bar Foundation; Houston Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers
  • Associate, American Board of Trial Advocacy
  • Member of Texas Association of Civil Trial and Appellate Specialists