Kelly Sandill

experienced

Straight Talk® is good business
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Contact Information

Houston

600 Travis
Suite 4200
Houston, TX 77002
P: +1.713.220.4181
F: +1.713.220.4285
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Kelly Sandill

Partner

Houston Office
600 Travis
Suite 4200
Houston, TX 77002
P: +1.713.220.4181
F: +1.713.220.4285

Kelly is a partner in the firm’s public law and trial groups. She has extensive experience representing governmental entities and private businesses in high-stakes court proceedings at the trial and appellate levels. Her cases often involve claims for emergency and injunctive relief and attract media attention. In more than 16 years of trial practice, Kelly has successfully handled merger challenges, conspiracy and commercial fraud actions, white collar criminal proceedings, fiduciary duty and partnership cases, bidder and contractor disputes, public ordinance and election challenges, Voting Rights Act cases, public bond validation proceedings, contract-with-the-voters cases, ultra vires claims, whistleblower suits, and constitutional litigation. Kelly also has extensive experience handing internal investigations for private and public sector clients relating to major accidents, ethics and regulatory compliance. She has been recognized as a Texas Rising Star and a Texas Super Lawyer, and she routinely writes and speaks on new developments in the law.

In addition to her active trial practice, Kelly is an involved member of the Houston community. She is a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation and the Houston Bar Foundation and has been a member of the Alexis De Tocqueville Society of the United Way of Greater Houston for many years. She is a supporter of numerous local initiatives and philanthropic causes and is married to Judge R.K. Sandill of Texas’s 127th Civil District Court.

Representative Experience

Public Sector Litigation

  • Trial counsel for tax-increment-funded local development association in action challenging constitutionality of entity and supporting tax increment, as well as subsequent bond validation suit to validate entity's existence and authority to issue public bonds. Obtained trial court victory on all claims.
  • Trial counsel for Texas municipality in action alleging violations of the Voting Rights Act in connection with change from single-member city council districts to mixed single-member and at-large system. 
  • Trial counsel for Texas county in Section 1983 action alleging termination of contract in retaliation for constitutionally protected speech.
  • Trial counsel for Texas school district in election contest relating to school bond election. Obtained dismissal of suit.
  • Trial counsel for metropolitan transit system in action alleging violation of contract with voters over building of light rail. Obtained trial court dismissal of all claims.
  • Trial and appellate counsel for largest public school system in Texas (7th largest in the nation) in action by community activists seeking to enjoin new school construction based on allegations of improper use of public bond funds. Obtained trial victory on all claims.
  • Trial and appellate counsel for third largest county in the United States in action alleging violations of the Voting Rights Act in connection with redistricting of electoral maps for County Commissioners Court. Obtained trial court judgment in favor of county on all claims. Argued matter before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Judgment affirmed in all respects.
  • Trial counsel for Houston area sports and community venue district in action by bond insurer to compel increase in rate of taxes imposed as revenue source for outstanding public bonds. Obtained trial court dismissal of all claims.
  • Trial and appellate counsel for major Texas city in action under Texas Expedited Declaratory Judgment Act to validate city ordinance adopting increase in water and sewer service rates. Obtained trial court judgment in favor of city; judgment affirmed on appeal.

Internal Investigations

  • Counsel for community college district in internal investigation of campus shooting incident.
  • Counsel for local governmental entity in internal investigation of sexual harassment claims against government contractor.
  • Counsel for school district in internal investigation of ethics and procurement matters.
  • Counsel for local governmental entity in internal investigation of suspected employee theft of governmental property.
  • Counsel for pipeline manufacturer in internal investigation of fatality accident.

Securities Litigation

  • Trial counsel for master limited partnership in Texas lawsuit over all-stock acquisition of affiliated entity in consolidation transaction resulting in combined partnership worth $7.5 billion.
  • Trial counsel for the special committee of a publicly traded master limited partnership in a nationwide class action over a proposed merger transaction.
  • Trial counsel for the acquirer of a Texas corporation in shareholder derivative litigation alleging breaches of fiduciary duty by the corporation’s board of directors in connection with a $203 million tender offer.

Private Business Disputes

  • Trial counsel for banking institution in action against former executives for usurpation of corporate opportunities.
  • Trial counsel for investment fund manager in action alleging breach of fiduciary duty and negligence in management of Texas limited partnership.
  • Trial counsel for helicopter manufacturer in products liability suit relating to Army helicopter crash at Texas A&M University.
  • Trial counsel for oil refiner and marketer in federal court action by the production subsidiary of the national oil company of Mexico alleging conversion and conspiracy in connection with the import, purchase, and sale of natural gas condensate allegedly stolen by Mexican drug cartels.
  • Trial and appellate counsel for oil and gas company in federal court action by Ukrainian company relating to dispute over joint development of natural gas fields in Ukraine. Obtained stay of case, pending arbitration in Stockholm, Sweden.

Criminal Defense

  • Counsel for mortgage broker indicted by United States on fourteen counts of criminal conspiracy and wire fraud. Obtained favorable plea agreement under superseding indictment and sentence of five months, plus probation.
  • Counsel for energy sector services company in connection with government investigation relating to federal export and trade regulations.

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