Attorneys

Paul H. Sanderford

Paul H. Sanderford | Senior Partner

Paul is the senior partner. He brings 29 years of construction litigation experience to his clients. In addition to his considerable state construction law practice, Paul frequently represents clients in litigation against federal agencies before the Armed Services & Civilian Board of Contract Appeals. Paul has handled many federal bid protests and frequently advises clients and industry groups concerning compliance with small business administration programs including those designed to assist small, disadvantaged, service disabled and veteran owned businesses. He is Board Certified in Construction Law and is an adjunct professor at Baylor Law School where he has taught Construction Law since 2012. Paul is also a certified mediator.

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Brian K. Carroll

Brian K. Carroll | Managing Partner

Brian is the managing partner. Licensed since 2002, the primary focus of Brian's practice is upon representing contractors and subcontractors in the construction industry. In addition to earning a law degree, he holds a Bachelor's of Science in Architectural Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to pursuing a law degree, Brian worked as a design engineer for two of the preeminent civil engineering firms in the nation. He uses his knowledge of TxDOT design and highway engineering to represent highway contractors and assist them in evaluating, preparing and litigating claims arising out of TxDOT projects. In addition to serving as an advocate, Brian is also a certified mediator.

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Calvin L. Cowan

Calvin L. Cowan | Partner

Calvin is a partner with the firm. Licensed since 2003, the primary focus of his practice is upon representing professionals in the construction industry. In addition to earning a law degree, he holds a Bachelor's degree from the Texas A&M University. Prior to pursuing a law degree, Calvin worked as a congressional staff member. He represents both plaintiffs and defendants involved in litigation before state and federal courts and in complex multi-party arbitrations.

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Allen V. Wilson

Allen V. Wilson | Senior Associate

Allen is a senior associate with the firm. Licensed in 2013, Allen’s entire practice is devoted to construction litigation. In addition to his law degree, Allen holds a Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of the Incarnate Word, in San Antonio. While in law school, Allen specialized in Administrative Practice, which gives him insight into the administrative claims process. Additionally, Allen served as a technical editor on the Baylor Law Review, and participated in the 2011 National Pretrial Competition. Further, Allen interned with Federal Judge Walter Smith at the United Statesof District Court for the Western District of Texas, Waco Division and with the State Office of Administrative Hearings, in Austin.

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Steve  M. Burton

Steve M. Burton | Senior Counsel

Steve joined the firm in January 2017 in the position of Senior Counsel. Historically, he has focused his practice in the areas of construction law, banking law/credit’s rights and serving as general counsel to small and mid-sized businesses. Prior to entering the practice of law in 1998, Steve spent eighteen years in commercial banking as a commercial and real estate lender. Experience gained as a banker has proven to be very beneficial to his law practice.

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Shaina M. H. Swanson

Shaina M. H. Swanson | Associate

Shaina is an associate with the firm licensed in 2019. In addition to earning a law degree, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in History from the University of South Dakota. While in law school, Shaina served as executive editor on the Baylor Law Review and graduated as the highest-ranking student in her class. Prior to pursuing a law degree, Shaina served an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Officer in the United States Army.

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Bethany F. Beck

Bethany F. Beck | Partner

As a litigator Board Certified in Construction Law, Bethany enjoys advocating on behalf of clients both inside and outside the courtroom. Her practice focuses on drafting, reviewing, and negotiating contract terms; lien and bond claims, and other non-payment claims; construction project disputes regarding scheduling claims, termination, defective work, and other complex matters. Bethany represents clients in both state and federal courts, as well as arbitration proceedings. She is a regular presenter at large conferences for other construction lawyers, and also does pro bono work teaching those in the industry through trade organizations.

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Michael  Ratliff

Michael Ratliff | Of Counsel

Michael joined the firm in an Of Counsel role in October 2019 following his retirement from the Office of the Attorney General. After eighteen years of private practice in New Orleans, La. and Sweetwater, Tx., Michael served twenty-four years in the Transportation Division of the OAG, the last few years as Senior Attorney for the Tort and Contract Litigation Section. In his career, he tried over fifty cases to jury verdict and several contract cases before the State Office of Administrative Hearings. In addition, he handled twenty appeals. Michael is Board Certified in Civil Trial Law.

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Thomas J. Walthall

Thomas J. Walthall | Partner

Tom has practiced construction law since 1980 and is Board Certified in Construction Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. His practice consists of construction litigation of all types, including court trials and arbitration involving construction defects, claims for payment, change order disputes, delay, interference and loss of efficiency claims, bond and lien claims, Prompt Pay Act claims, and Texas Construction Trust Fund cases. His practice regularly includes state court and arbitration cases, federal Miller Act litigation, and bankruptcy discharge litigation. Tom’s practice also includes counseling clients in the negotiation and preparation of subcontracts, construction contracts, purchase and supply orders, and related construction documents

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R. Annie Banks

R. Annie Banks | Associate

Annie is an associate with the firm licensed in 2020. In addition to earning a law degree, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Texas at Austin. Annie has held a number of research-intensive jobs, including performing research on American slave trade routes for the University of Texas, and locating and returning art and antiquities stolen by Nazis during WWII for the Holocaust Art Restitution Project.

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