Chris Dodson

Partner, Houston



Chris Dodson focuses his diverse trial practice on high-risk and high-value business disputes and environmental matters. Chris' clients range from Fortune 500 businesses to high net-worth individuals. He has extensive first-chair trial experience across a variety of subject matters.

Chris' courtroom skills and approach have been widely recognized and honored. Chambers USA (2019) ranks Chris among the leading commercial litigators in Texas, noting that he is "very impressive," and describing him as "an incredibly hard worker who thinks very well on his feet and is very effective in court." He is also nationally recognized in The Legal 500 United States for Energy Litigation (2016-2019), Environment: Litigation (2017-2020), and General Commercial Disputes (2018-2019, 2022). Chris has also been recognized by the Texas Lawyer, Benchmark Litigation, Lawdragon's Leading 500 Lawyers in America, Best Lawyers, and Texas Super Lawyers.

His recent trial victories have attracted media attention, as well as peer recognition. In 2022, Chris tried in federal court a case on behalf of KKR-owned BMC Software against IBM, obtaining a $1.6 billion judgment on behalf of BMC Software. In 2021, Chris tried and won in federal court a complete take-nothing judgment in a $30 million trade-secrets and breach-of-contract case regarding offshore equipment on behalf of Foro Energy. In 2015, he was named the Texas "Litigator of the Week" by Texas Lawyer for his take-nothing judgment on behalf of Royal Vopak. In 2014, his participation in the defense of an environmental enforcement action was called "one of the greatest defense victories in Texas history" by The Texas Lawbook. In 2013, Chris obtained a take-nothing judgment in West Virginia rejecting—for the first time—a causal link between fracking and groundwater contamination.

Bars and Courts
Texas State Bar
US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
US District Court for the Northern District of Texas
US District Court for the Southern District of Texas
US District Court for the Western District of Texas
US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
The University of Texas

School of Law

Southern Methodist University


Representative matters:

  • BMC Software — following a federal trial, obtained a $1.6 billion breach of contract and fraud judgment against IBM;*
  • Foro Energy — following a federal trial, obtained a complete take-nothing judgment in lawsuit brought by an engineering and manufacturing firm alleging misappropriation of trade secrets and breach of a non-disclosure agreement;*
  • Vopak — Successfully defended Vopak Americas in arbitration concerning construction of 10 storage tanks and associated pipelines. Case settled favorably after discovery;*
  • Vopak — representing Vopak in lawsuit brought against Intercontinental Terminals Company (ITC) for damages arising from a massive fire at ITC's facility and resulting chemical spill;*
  • Distressed Debt Investors — Representing group of distressed debt investors as lenders to entities owned by World Class Realty. Representation includes bankruptcy and adversary proceedings, foreclosure litigation, defaulted debt proceedings, suits on guarantee, and collection litigations;*
  • Great-West Healthcare of Texas — Following a two-week jury trial, obtained favorable judgment in lawsuit brought by Kelsey-Seybold. Case settled during pendency of appeal;*
  • Houston hospital — Obtained complete dismissal of federal class-action brought by consumers seeking in excess of $100 million against a Houston hospital for violations of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act;*
  • Post Oak Clean Green, Inc. — as lead attorney, obtained complete dismissal of lawsuit brought by local groundwater district against a landfill developer;*
  • Vopak — Obtained complete dismissal of $25 million breach of contract and fraud lawsuit on eve of trial;*
  • Waste Management — Led the team defending company in a multi-billion dollar environmental enforcement action and attendant mass tort lawsuits. The actions were settled favorably during trial in Harris County, Texas;*

*Matters prior to joining White & Case

Awards and Recognition

2023 Lawdragon 500 Leading U.S. Environmental Lawyers 

Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC
Benchmark Litigation US National Future Star, 2023; Texas Future Star, 2023

Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC
Benchmark Litigation 40 & Under Hot List, 2016 - 2020; Top Litigator Under 40, US National, 2018 - 2019
BL Rankings Best Lawyers
Commercial Litigation, 2020 - 2023; Litigation - Environmental, 2023

Lawdragon Leading 500 Lawyers in America 2021 Awards

Chambers USA
Texas Litigation: General Commercial, 2019

The Legal 500 United States
General Commercial Disputes, 2018 - 2019, 2022; Environment: Litigation, 2017 - 2020; Energy Litigation: Oil and Gas, 2017 - 2019; Energy Litigation: Conventional Power, 2019; Energy: Litigation, 2016; Environment: Regulatory, 2018 – 2019

Thomson Reuters
Texas Super Lawyers
Rising Star, 2014 - 2019

ALM Texas Lawyer
Professional Excellence Awards, Texas Lawyer On the Rise, 2018