Biography

Lawrence E. Henke

Larry’s expertise is the representation and counseling of business clients. Capitalizing on his experience as an in-house counsel for two publicly traded companies, one a Fortune 500 manufacturing conglomerate, Larry has guided businesses through multiple types of commercial transactions and litigated disputes in the U.S., Europe, South America and the Asia Pacific region. He regularly advises boards of directors on SEC issues, has managed SEC and DOJ investigations, and performed multiple internal employee misconduct investigations and FCPA inquiries for companies.¬†Larry also represents individuals with business litigation, commercial disputes, HOA litigation and property disputes.¬† His experience with construction clients and manufacturing entities extends over the universe of real property litigation, including residential construction, commercial projects and individual matters arising out of contract disputes, performance issues, HOA regulation enforcement and interpretation and nearly every facet of construction law.

Larry handles all types of litigation matters, including international disputes, class action defense, securities fraud actions, mass tort and environmental litigation, products liability, insurance coverage litigation, contract disputes, HOA litigation, employment law, and corporate and business law matters.

Larry brings to his clients actual trial experience coupled with the background and insight of an in-house counsel which uniquely positions him to provide value added legal advice and services to his business clients.

Major Litigation

  • First chair trials to verdict of multiple defense matters and plaintiff’s cases in Dallas, Collin, Harris and Smith counties.
  • National coordinating counsel for manufacturing company managing a toxic tort docket of over 100,000 matters pending in 27 states.
  • National counsel for domestic subsidiary of international manufacturing company defending company in diacetyl mass tort litigation (popcorn lung disease) matters currently
    pending in 11 states.
  • Management of 47 heritage product lines’ involvement in mass tort products liability litigation. Involved 11 different lines of coverage and management
    of over 100,000 cases in 34 states, plus the supervision of 8 National Coordinating Counsel teams and over 200 lawyers nationwide.
  • Carrier declaratory action and dispute involving $1.4 billion in insurance coverage. Successfully established coverage in disputed time periods and obtained fullest amount
    of coverage for company.
  • Investigated an internal leak of non-public information and a hostile take-over bid by a former officer and group of current employees from U.S. and France. Obtained TRO
    and successfully protected company’s interests in multi-national litigation.
  • Suit for indemnification of environmental and products liability against heritage brand seller involving interpretation of LBO transaction, partnership formation and
    letter agreements establishing indemnity and ownership of policies.

Labor & Employment

  • Negotiation of non-compete agreement and modification of multiple limited partnership agreements related to oil and gas leases and operating agreements in multiple
    states.
  • Defended lawsuit related to the enforcement of a non-compete agreement against a former employee and his new employer.
  • Defended injunction obtained against a potential employer of an engineering employee allegedly covered by a non-compete agreement.
  • NLRB labor arbitration involving training requirements and seeking pay adjustment for employee group for 2 years.
  • NLRB arbitration demand for review of shift assignments and discipline action taken against employee.
  • Dispute and lawsuit involving administration of company benefits plan and eligibility for coverage. Alleged damages exceeded $1 million due to improper plan administration
    by vendor.
  • Dispute over application of life insurance policy exclusions and policy holder notification.
  • Lawsuit involving violation of severance agreement and claw back provision of severance agreement.
  • Claim by company against former employee for breach of duty of loyalty, breach of confidentiality agreement and computer fraud.
  • Negotiation of severance agreement between pharmacist and health care insurance provider related to relocation benefits and discrimination claims.

Securities and Compliance

  • Defended a consolidated shareholder class action merging four separate shareholder suits and involving allegations against the company, officers, underwriters and
    auditors.
  • Managed formal investigation by SEC into 2004 accounting restatement and announced 2005 restatement, resulting in a no-prosecution finding from SEC.
  • Defended shareholder derivative action against the Board of Directors and CEO regarding allegations of mismanagement resulting in a financial restatement of earnings.
  • SEC investigation into REG FD violation by company CEO and Investor Relations director.
  • Investigated an internal leak of non-public information and a take-over bid by a former officer and group of current employees from U.S. and France. Obtained TRO and
    successfully protected company’s interests in multi-national litigation.
  • Conducted multiple internal employee investigations resulting from Code of Conduct reports and Sarbanes Oxley hotline reports.

Intellectual Property

  • Defense of a TRO and Injunction brought against Dutch manufacturing company by Chinese manufacturer of competing product.
  • Theft of trade secret case involving former employees misappropriating trade secrets. Judgment obtained against defendants as well as post judgment sanctions for violating
    court order.
  • Lanham Act trademark infringement and trade secret case involving former distributor employees who misappropriated trade secrets and manufactured a counterfeit product.
    Injunction obtained and judgment received in settlement.
  • Breach of duty of loyalty and trade secret misappropriation case involving core group of employees who started competing business. Case is pending.
  • Negotiated the acquisition of product IP for component supplier to be utilized in a new product introduction.
  • Negotiated intellectual property rights and licenses for IP in jointly developed component part technology.
  • Trademark infringement matter against a company unlawfully using a registered trademark in commerce without a license.
  • Trademark infringement matter against Internet based company using American Standard trademarks in sales website.

Environmental

  • Defense of manufacturing company alleged to be a responsible party in the largest environmental action filed by the NJDEP in the State of New Jersey.
  • Defense of company alleged to have been a discharger onto municipal property from a manufacturing facility that was closed decades before suit.
  • Defended company against allegations of unlawful disposal of harmful chemicals into a landfill site which was later sold to the school district for a high school building
    project.

International

  • Litigated a product dispute between the French Transportation Authority and a German company related to tank car valve performance.
  • Foreclosure of Mexican property due to a German judicial determination of judgment involving a German contract between a German company and Mexican vendor.
  • Investigation of a Thai government gas line project involving a contract dispute between an Italian company and UK company with a catastrophic line failure in
    Thailand.
  • Litigated dispute involving several contracts for a Canadian subsidiary with vendors in Quebec, British Columbia and the U.S. for various services provided to
    manufacturing facilities.
  • Defended claim from former Argentine employee of Argentine subsidiary for commission due in South American transaction.
  • Shareholder dispute in Germany by owners of stock in German GmbH company.
  • Coordinated the response to an investigation inquiry from the Moscow police regarding an abuse of power investigation related to a water facility construction project in
    Russia.

Admissions

  • State of Texas
  • State of Montana
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas

Professional Affiliations

  • American Corporate Counsel Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Dallas Bar Association
  • Defense Research Institute
  • State Bar of Texas
  • State Bar of Montana

Education

  • Southern Methodist University School of Law, J.D., magna cum laude, 1999
  • University of Great Falls (Criminal Justice), BS, 1996

Publications

Author, Reductions in Force, Can they be done legally and humanely, In-House Defense Quarterly Fall 2009

Author, It’s a Rough World Out There, DRI for the Defense, August 2009

Associate Editor, TADC Products Liability Newsletter, 1999-2000

Author, Is the Fair Labor Standards Act Really Fair?, SMU Law Review 1999

Personal

Larry is a Montana native and former State Trooper who moved to Texas in 1996 to begin his legal education. He is married to his high school sweetheart, Patricia, and has two daughters and three grand-children. He enjoys living on a farm and catering to his pigmy goats, ducks, geese and the family dogs. In his spare time, Larry likes to play golf, and wishes he was better at it than he is. Larry and Patricia are members of Grace Community Church.