The Lanier Law Firm is changing the approach to client care. Founded in 1990 by Mark Lanier, The Lanier Law Firm is committed to addressing client concerns with effective and often untraditional solutions.
The diverse clients represented by our firm share one common trait: the need for serious and sound legal representation; it's what we refer to as Legal Care. Firm attorneys provide individual attention to clients with serious injuries, grievances and other concerns. In addition, we are regularly called on as a "go to" resource for corporations when unique legal situations need immediate resolution. Our vast trial experience includes substantial verdicts in cases involving asbestos exposure, business fraud, serious personal injuries, product liability, pharmaceutical litigation, oil and gas litigation and other civil litigation. For example, in 2016, Mr. Lanier won two federal trial jury verdicts that together totaled more than $1.5 billion in litigation over metal-on-metal hip implants manufactured by DePuy Orthopaedics Inc., a subsidiary of New Brunswick, New Jersey-based Johnson & Johnson. In April 2014, Mr. Lanier and our firm won a record verdict against pharmaceutical giants Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. and Eli Lilly & Co. over the dangerous side effects of the diabetes medication Actos, which ranked as the 7th largest verdict in U.S. history. We also are known for our work defending some of the country's largest companies. One Fortune 500 company chose The Lanier Law Firm to help overturn a $1.6 billion default judgment. In that case, our client had been sued for failure to warn customers about the dangers of its asbestos-containing product. It was actually quite an interesting case study. The default judgment was entered after the company failed to answer the lawsuit in a timely manner. After The Lanier Law Firm was hired, the default judgment was overturned and the matter was resolved. In our view, this case was remarkable not only for the size of the default judgment, but also because The Lanier Law Firm was hired by a company that it had also sued. Because the default judgment endangered the solvency of a corporation that had agreed to provide financial compensation to thousands of asbestos claimants, our firm felt that it was in the best interests of our clients to represent the asbestos manufacturer. Although tremendous legal victories are a firm trademark, the primary focus remains with Mr. Lanier's original vision to provide "the highest quality Legal Care delivered in an honest, professional manner to enrich the lives or businesses of our clients." Because of this vision, the attorney/client relationship at The Lanier Law Firm begins with the initial consultation. Economic, legal and professional relationships are established at the first meeting. Our attorneys and staff insure that each client knows their attorney, their financial obligations and most importantly that their case is being handled with a solution in mind. Solutions to legal problems cover the entire case, not just courtroom trials. Our stellar track record enables many clients to resolve their legal matters out of court. When trials are necessary, our in-house attorney/psychologist provides unique insight into trial psychology and jury selection. The firm's appellate team stays one step ahead, preparing clients' cases for appeal even before an appeal is filed. Business leaders and individual clients of The Lanier Law Firm are people, not just case numbers. Our team works on each client's case with the needs of the people behind it in mind.
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The Lanier Law Firm is one of the most experienced asbestos litigation law firms in the world. Our expertise and reputation in these cases derive from a long, successfultrack record that spans more than two decades.
The Lanier Law Firm is very diverse in the types of cases it represents but it is no secret that Mark Lanier and his firm made their name initially representing victims of asbestos exposure. The Lanier Law Firm has significant experience working on behalf of families and victims of chemical exposures. Since 1998, Mark Lanier has won substantial recoveries on behalf those affected by asbestos exposure and those suffering from mesothelioma. Just one of those cases centered around 21 steelworkers who contracted asbestos disease at an Alabama steel mill (Aaron, et al. v. Abex, et al, February 1998). The workers were exposed to asbestos while using a grinding wheel. The jury found the defendants liable for marketing and design defects, negligence, gross negligence and malice. Our attorneys have a wealth of experience dealing with the specialized scientific and medical issues that are common in asbestos and toxic exposure lawsuits. Our reputation for courtroom excellence gives us the added leverage to negotiate significant settlements on behalf of clients who would rather be spending time with their families than sitting through a trial. Just a few examples of substantial recoveries on behalf of our clients include: A 22-year-old woman with mesothelioma who was exposed to asbestos as a child while attending school in an aging school building; A 67-year-old refinery worker diagnosed with mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer caused by years of asbestos exposure in his workplace; A 39-year-old brake mechanic with mesothelioma caused by exposure to asbestos found in automotive friction products; A 48-year-old woman diagnosed with mesothelioma who was exposed to asbestos as a child by dangerous fibers her father unknowingly brought home on his work clothes. A 78-year-old railroad worker with mesothelioma who was exposed to asbestos over years on the job; A 38-year-old man with brain cancer caused by exposure to vinyl chloride through his job in a PVC plant. We are also pursuing claims for other workers in high risk occupations, including: Vinyl chloride plant workers, polyvinyl chloride fabricators, beauticians and barbers. Vinyl chloride can cause angiosarcoma of the liver and, in some cases, glioblastoma of the brain. The Lanier Law Firm understands the emotional and financial stress caused by chemical-induced illnesses, and our lawyers receive a tremendous amount of satisfaction knowing that they're helping families in their time of greatest need.
M. Clay Fostel is the Managing Attorney for Asbestos Litigation at The Lanier Law Firm. A native of Kermit, Texas, Mr. Fostel attended Southern Methodist University and earned his undergraduate degree in psychology in 1996. He then earned his law degree from the South Texas College of Law in Houston, and has been licensed to practice law in the State of Texas since 2001.
Mr. Fostel's vast years of trial experience includes work on a case that resulted in one of the nation's largest verdicts in 2004, as reported by The National Law Journal. His efforts in the asbestos and toxic torts arena have earned him an incredibly strong reputation among both plaintiffs and defense counsel as fair, knowledgeable and results oriented. He concentrates his litigation practice on representing plaintiffs in the areas of personal injury, products liability, toxic torts, wrongful death and asbestos litigation.
Mr. Fostel is a member of the State Bar of Texas, Texas Trial Lawyers Association, American Bar Association, and The Texas District and County Attorneys Association.
Mr. Fostel lives in Houston with his wife, Lauren, and children, Sophia, Michael and Ava where they are members of Memorial Drive Methodist Church. Mr. Fostel is an avid sports fan and loves to cook.
Attorney, author, teacher, pastor and expert story teller, Mark Lanier is no stranger to the public platform. Since he founded The Lanier Law Firm in 1990, Mark has earned international recognition as one of the top trial attorneys in the United States, with firm offices in Houston, New York and Los Angeles supporting his work for clients across the country.
Mark's courtroom experience is significant and diverse, including:
In November 2017, Mark helped secure a $247 million verdict against DePuy Orthopaedics Inc., a subsidiary of health care giant Johnson & Johnson, over Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip implants. The verdict was won on behalf of six New York residents who claim they were injured by the faulty medical devices. This verdict comes on the heels of two others won in March and December of 2016, both against DePuy and Johnson & Johnson. The March verdict was recognized by the National Law Journal as the Outstanding Medical Device Award for 2016, and as one of the Top 50 Verdicts of the Year. In the December verdict, Mark won over $1 billion, which ranked as the fourth largest verdict in the nation for that year. Together, the two consecutive verdicts were ranked as the first and second largest products liability verdicts of 2016.
Mark scored another headline-grabbing verdict in April 2014 against Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. and Eli Lilly & Co. over the diabetes drug Actos.
From the very beginning of his career, Mark has proved again and again that he is not one to slow down or rest on the laurels of his recent victories. Early in 1993, he made a huge impact in the world of courtroom litigation by winning a then-record verdict for a small oil company in a business fraud case against one of the nation's largest oil providers.
His winning verdict in the nation's first trial over the painkiller Vioxx, Ernst v. Merck, set the tone for similar cases nationally.
Mark followed up the record Vioxx verdict with two wins totalling more than $50 million over the same drug.
He obtained a precedent-setting settlement for a national sugar association trade group and several of the largest U.S. sugar manufacturers regarding a false promotion lawsuit against one of the world's leading distributors of artificial sweeteners.
He also was responsible for reaching a sizeable settlement for syringe manufacturer Retractable Technologies in an antitrust case against Becton Dickinson & Company, which served as the basis for the movie Puncture, starring Chris Evans.
His verdict on behalf of 21 asbestos victims is considered one of the largest asbestos liability awards in U.S. history.
Mark also secured a settlement for 130 Ingersoll Rand Plc employees in a lawsuit over unpaid bonuses related to the sale of an Ingersoll Rand subsidiary.
Mark's courtroom work has resulted in feature articles in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, Bloomberg News and the Houston Chronicle, among many others. He also is a frequent guest on news shows such as CNBC's Squawk Box and Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto. Mark also is a regular co-host and contributor to Fox Business News' highly rated Varney and Company with Stuart Varney.
Mark is enthusiastically involved in government and community activities outside the practice of law. Chairmen, company presidents and senior executives from major American corporations and universities often call on him for his respected business views on national and international issues. In 2011, Mark was also bestowed the distinguished Ambassador of Peace award by the Guatemalan government.
Mark also is the founder of the Lanier Theological Library (www.LanierTheologicalLibrary.org), one of the nation's largest private theological collections. He teaches a weekly, 700-plus-member Sunday school class focusing on Biblical Literacy at Champion Forest Baptist Church in Houston. Mark is the founder of the Christian Trial Lawyers Association, a non-profit organization whose goal is to create a network of principled attorneys to minister to others through civic-minded endeavors. He serves on the boards of the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) and the Albright Institute. An accomplished author, Mark recently published the book, Christianity on Trial (IVP 2014) and a daily devotional book entitled, Psalms for Living: Daily Prayers, Wisdom, and Guidance (Baylor University Press 2016).
Mark is the father of five wonderful children and lives in Houston with his wife, Becky.
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