Mr. Stodghill is National Director of Business Litigation Development for Fish & Richardson.
Mr. Stodghill was profiled in the Texas Super Lawyers 2003 magazine published by Texas Monthly in an article entitled “The Dark Knight: Holy Transactions and Litigation! Steve Stodghill comes to the rescue for all his famous clients.” As Mark Cuban, owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks and Mr. Stodghill’s long-time client, stated in that article: “Steve’s mind is always working on your case, and I like that … I’m not an expert in litigation, but Steve has one quality I really like: He wins.”
In 2016, BTI Litigation Outlook 2017 named Fish one of the “Most Feared Firms in Litigation,” ranking the firm in the top 15 firms nationally and rated Mr. Stodghill’s litigation group as either a “Standout” or “Honor Roll” for complex commercial litigation, class actions, product liability litigation, securities and finance litigation and complex employment litigation.
- Stodghill has been named a Texas Super Lawyer by Texas Monthly for each of the 14 years in which the publication has been in existence.
- Stodghill was named one of the top 500 lawyers in the nation by Lawdragon.com.
- Stodghill was recognized among the country’s top business litigators in the nation by Super Lawyers Corporate Counsel Edition.
- Stodghill has been named to the national litigation section of the Super Lawyers Business Edition.
- Stodghill has been named one of the top 15 business defense attorneys in North Texas by the Dallas Business Journal.
- For the last twenty years Mr. Stodghill has had an AV Rating by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest rating for ethics and ability.
- The Dallas Observer “Best of Dallas” issue described Mr. Stodghill as a “pit bull of a lawyer.”
- Corporate Counsel and The American Lawyer have nationally rated Mr. Stodghill as a “Top Rated Lawyer in Commercial Litigation.”
Mr. Stodghill is a Principal in the Dallas office of Fish & Richardson P.C. His practice emphasizes all aspects of complex litigation. Mr. Stodghill served as Team Counsel for the Dallas Mavericks from 2000 to 2002. He was a Founding Partner at Lynn, Stodghill, Melsheimer & Tillotson (which the Texas Monthly described in a 1998 article “Top Guns” as the “Navy Seals” of litigation), working with the firm from 1993 to 2000. He also served as an associate with Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld from 1987 to 1993 and as a Legislative Assistant for Congressman Ralph M. Hall in 1985.
Mr. Stodghill possesses a broad range of experience in complex commercial litigation representing both plaintiffs and defendants in contractual disputes, breach of fiduciary duty cases, securities litigation and arbitration, shareholder derivative actions and shareholder oppression cases, TRO and injunctive relief proceedings, insurance coverage disputes, class actions, employment litigation, catastrophic injury and medical malpractice cases, intellectual property/trade secret theft cases, lawyer/accountant malpractice cases and post trial/appellate practice. In addition to being chief litigation counsel to Mark Cuban and The Dallas Mavericks, Mr. Stodghill has also represented numerous prominent companies including Yahoo!, Bank One, Zurich Financial, Mary Kay Cosmetics, Alcatel, Guaranty Federal Bank, Trammell Crow, Texaco, Xerox, Sabre, Eljer Industries, Qwest, Hunt Asset Management, Callaway Golf, Dean Foods, Fossil, broadcast.com, Richmont, U.S. Risk, Generation Partners and Driscoll Children’s Hospital in significant litigation matters. In addition to Mark Cuban, Mr. Stodghill has represented interests of twelve billionaires and other high net worth individuals including Todd Wagner, Tom Hicks, Lamar Hunt, Trammell Crow, Phil Romano, Tim Headington, and multiple members of the Al Rajhi family. Mr. Stodghill has also represented Carrie Prejean (former Miss California and first runner up Miss USA) and her husband, Kyle Boller (quarterback Baltimore Ravens, Oakland Raiders), as well as Vince Young (quarterback, Tennessee Titans, Philadelphia Eagles).
The firm’s representation of Mark Cuban and the Dallas Mavericks has drawn numerous media accolades:
- The Dallas Observer called the motion: “The Greatest Legal Brief in the History of Jurisprudence”
- The Fort Worth Star-Telegram said the motion: “ . . . extended the Mavericks victory parade another week.”
- The American Lawyer described Stodghill as “. . . a longtime Cuban confidant . . . ” and said Cuban is “. . . no stranger to high-powered defense lawyers.”
- The San Antonio Express-News described the motion as “. . . the ultimate legal defense . . .”
- The Wall Street Journal described Cuban’s argument as “The Dallas Mavericks are world champions, so go pound sand.”
- Deadspin.com referred to Tom Melsheimer as: “The Brilliant Legal Mind Behind Mark Cuban’s … Brief”
- Entertainment website ology.com said: “Even Mark Cuban’s legal team is the best in the world.”
- GackSports.com said “Mark Cuban’s Legal Document RULES!”
- CBSSports.com: “Mark Cuban files classic legal brief . . .probably the greatest legal brief in the history of legal briefs . . .”
- A high-profile legal website labeled Cuban’s legal team as “. . . the best lawyers around.”
Working with high-profile clients, Mr. Stodghill has drawn many media accolades and mentions. TMZ.com called his work for Mark Cuban and The Dallas Mavericks: “The Most Badass Legal Doc Ever.”
Terdema Ussery, President and CEO, Dallas Mavericks:
I like to call Steve ‘The Dark Knight.’ When he focuses on the litigation and believes his client has been wronged, he has this laser-like focus to come in, find what’s not right, and blow up stuff.
They’ve done everything for us. They’ve run the gamut of legal work for us over the years.
I remember walking in there when there was no one in the office but Steve and his Batman costume.
We feel like we’re client no. 1, and I’m sure all their clients feel the same way.
You get the feeling that after they agree to do something, the problem is already resolved.
He goes into dark situations, and takes them on. That’s why I call him The Dark Knight.
Steve and Tom are intellectual black belts. They know it, but they don’t flaunt it.
2909 Taylor Street
Dallas, TX 75226
Sterling Miller, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, Sabre Holdings
I have recommended Steve and Fish & Richardson to a number of general counsel around the country.
I think very highly of Steve, Tom and their team for litigation expertise and patent litigation expertise.
We have worked with Steve on commercial litigation matters, and other attorneys at the firm on patent litigation, employment litigation, copyright matters, practically everything.
In every case, we’ve been very pleased with the result.
If we have to go to trial, I can’t think of a better team to bring to trial.
They have the best client relationship skills of any firm I’ve dealt with. I’m not talking about dinners or tickets to a Maverick’s game. On their own time and their own dime – they’ll do a whole presentation on what the case is about.
They are so thoughtful on the front end in terms of what you need to know about a case.
They return phone calls right away. They don’t nickel and dime you for five minutes, or even 20 minutes. Those types of things go a long way.
I sent an email about my case, and got an email from Tom in five minutes.
I’m a big fan of Tom and Steve.
You find that same attitude to solve problems with everyone at the firm.
3150 Sabre Drive
Southlake, TX 76092
Nathan Moore, Chief Legal Officer and Secretary, Mary Kay
Steve and the firm have helped us with patent litigation and high-stakes commercial litigation.
Steve truly understands the role of general counsel – the intricacies and the details.
To be a good outside counsel and add value, you must have a keen understanding of your client’s business.
One of Steve’s strengths is understanding our business.
If it’s a patent litigation matter, then by definition it’s a very serious litigation matter.
Something that we would get Fish and Steve involved in.
They’ve delivered again and again.
At the end of the day, they deliver results.
We’ve recommended them on several occasions.
16251 Dallas Parkway
Addison, TX 75001
Rick W. Merrill, CEO & President, Cook Children’s Health Care System
I was introduced to the fine attorneys at FR when I was working in Corpus Christi at Driscoll Children’s Hospital where they handled a couple of qui tam lawsuits.
We had a lot on our plate to deal with, obviously, and Steve and Tom did great work for us.
We settled with the federal government for pennies on the dollar.
The team at Fish & Richardson did a remarkable job at helping position Driscoll Children’s in the best way possible.
They are on my speed dial. If we ever have to punch that button, they’re on the top of my list
These are good guys and they know their stuff. This is a firm that clearly understands the law and they do a great job of working through the issues with an organization in order to drive a favorable outcome.
Cook Children’s Healthcare System
801 Seventh Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76104
Ross Gatlin, CEO/Managing Partner, Prophet Equity LLC
We found something rare at Fish & Richardson.
Fish & Richardson and Steve were recommended to me by a lot of folks who I respect.
Steve is obviously a litigator.
When we first talked, I outlined a decision I was facing, and his advice was counterintuitive for a litigator. He told me, ‘Ross a lawsuit is like cancer; you want to avoid it in every possible way.’ That gave me enormous confidence in this guy. For him to recommend something so opposite of what you would expect from a lawyer is why he earned my trust immediately.
I don’t think you can ask an attorney to be more thoughtful and practical than Steve Stodghill.
He uses wisdom, judgment and experience to make calculated decisions on how to handle things.
He is the best form of warrior. There’s nothing more that Steve Stodghill wants than a good fight. He loves the battle. He loves the taste of blood. But years of wisdom have taught him when not draw the sword. That’s rare, and that’s what impresses me most about Stodghill.
He’ll say ‘I could get you another five or ten million, but you have to decide if that’s a good use of your time.’ I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked away from situations that others would view as an opportunity because Steve knew it was a bad situation.
He has enough experience to get really involved in the important parts of a case, and to delegate the rest to a great team and let them stand on their own.
These guys are focused on the right priority issues. They don’t lose the forest for the trees, and they don’t try to boil the ocean.
Steve is a Renaissance man among lawyers. I don’t think of him as a lawyer, he’s a business advisor.
Prophet Equity LLC
1460 Main Street, Suite 200
Southlake, TX 76092
Dr. Greg Pearl, Chief of the Division of Vascular Surgery, Baylor University Medical Center
We were involved with a physician practice management company that was underperforming, and things went from bad to worse. We had an ironclad contract not to complete that would have prevented us from practicing vascular surgery in Texas.
They showed and proved that it would have been a true hardship for the community to lose our the vascular services provided by our group.
We got a summary judgment. We kicked their butt.
I’ve referred them to several other clients.
Steve is a fantastic communicator. We had a great experience with them.
They explained everything that was going on in our case.
Steve and I have become great friends.
Dr. Greg Pearl
Baylor University Medical Center
621 N. Hall Street, Suite 100
Dallas, TX 75226
Randy Hyne, Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Fossil Partners, L.P.
I’ve been very satisfied with the work they’ve done for us. Over the years, we’ve had to fight off several patent trolls, and they’ve done a good job for us.
A lot of law firms rely on email, but we have lot of phone calls and in person meetings.
I’ve referred cases to them. In fact, an attorney who used to work for me is now with another company and he also works with Fish & Richardson.
Fossil Partners, L.P.
2280 N. Greenville Ave.
Richardson, TX 75082
David Kiger, President and CEO, Worldwide Express
We’ve worked with them for the whole 10 years they’ve been at Fish & Richardson, and worked with them before then.
The core group of Stodghill, Melsheimer and Harper are who we’ve worked with the most.
I have taken any and all litigation to them, and they have handled all of those cases to our complete satisfaction.
As a large franchise-based company, we’ve had quite a few legal matters arise over the years, and we always call on Steve and Tom. They’re just the best.
I refer to him as the ‘Wizard of Stodg.’ He’s always been able to handle the work, no matter that I’ve brought to him. He will find a way to work through everything. No matter has ever confounded him or left us in a position where we didn’t think we were completely protected.
They’ve handled our contract matters, large and small.
When we started working with Steve and Tom, we were a $40 million company. Now we’re in excess of $300 million. I guess you can say we’ve grown along with them over the years.
Litigation for a business can be very unsettling, but they have a great way of making you feel comfortable and explaining the issues in a way that lets you know they understand your case.
2828 Routh Street, Suite 400
Dallas, TX 75201
Mark Jennings, Managing Partner, Generation Partners
As long as I was able to avoid litigation professionally, I didn’t need Steve. When I did, he was the first person I called.
Steve is our first phone call. It doesn’t matter what the topic is.
Steve is a quarterback; he knows how to lead. He’s just so trustworthy and loyal.
He’s someone who’s kept every friend he’s had.
He’ll drop everything he’s doing, jump on a plane and do whatever it takes to help us out.
Steve has the biggest brain of anyone I’ve ever met.
What’s so interesting about Steve is that he can just remember everything he’s ever learned. He’s the closest I’ve ever known to someone with a photographic memory. In litigation it’s priceless. He devours information.
I’ve recommended him and other attorneys at the firm on many, many occasions.
Maybe Steve is Batman, who knows?
One Greenwhich Office Park
Greenwhich, CT 06831-5156
Fish Litigation Blog
January 9, 2017
Arbitration Risks, Part Two: Inside the Arbitration Process
Authors: Mike Gaddis, Ph.D., Taj Clayton, Steven H. Stodghill
June 3, 2016
Fish & Richardson:
The Agent of Change
Fish Litigation Blog
November 30, 2016
Arbitration Risks: Why Arbitration is Not Necessarily Better, Faster, or Cheaper Than Litigation.
Authors: Mike Gaddis, Ph.D., Taj Clayton, Steven H. Stodghill
October 9, 2014
Texas Vascular Associates Cleared of Fraud Allegations by Dallas Jury
June 23, 2011
Dallas Mavericks Motion Goes Viral
June 3, 2011
Fish & Richardson Wins Fraud Verdict Worth $35 Million for Worldwide Express In Texas Contract Lawsuit Against DHL Express
May 14, 2010
The Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America
July 30, 2009
Fish Successfully Defends Dallas Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban Against SEC Insider-Trading Charges