Nowak & Stauch, PLLC chosen as one of the top real estate law firms in north Texas. Read the article here.
March 2020 – Tom Stauch successfully defended a national homebuilder in an arbitration filed by the claimant homeowners claims of negligence, DTPA violations, and breach of the structural and habitability warranties filed by the second owners of the home. As the second owners of the home, the claimants resisted arbitration as non-signatories to the sales contract and warranty, but after two trips to the Austin Court of Appeals, they were compelled to arbitrate. Because the home experienced multiple episodes of water penetration, particularly in the basement, the homeowners claimed these defects were caused by the homebuilder’s original inadequate installation of waterproofing and French drains. However, Tom uncovered evidence to prove the original homeowner substantially altered the home shortly after closing in order to finish out and make the basement into a habitable space. In doing so, the remodel contractor altered or damaged some of Toll’s original waterproofing and French drains. Further, even though the first owner failed to make adequate and truthful disclosures, the claimants knew about the water penetration and mold in the basement at the time of their purchase, and even negotiated for a discounted purchase price. After rejecting a pre-arbitration offer of $75,000, and presenting a claim for damages of $597,698 at the hearing, the claimants were awarded a total of only $28,908.
February 2020 – After successfully defending the firm’s HOA client at trial against a seven-figure claim brought by the former developer gone bankrupt, Tom Stauch partnered with co-counsel Dusty Fillmore and Bryan Bruner to defeat the developer’s appeal at the Fort Worth Court of Appeals and preserve the victory for the firm’s client. Read the opinion HERE
November 2019 – Tom Stauch settled a construction defect claim filed by a homeowners association for $5.9 million in connection with a 39-unit condominium project. After joining the responsible subcontractors to the case, the claim was settled for a fraction of the demand, and the settlement was funded almost entirely by subcontractors as opposed to the firm’s client.
January 2019 – Matt Nowak, Ryan Gentry, and Wes Davis scored a victory in the Texas Supreme Court on behalf of our client. Not only did this victory vindicate the client’s long-held position, it will likely pave the way for the client to recover a substantial amount of attorneys’ fees from the opposing party under Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 91a. In addition to securing a solid victory for our client, the firm is proud to have been involved in a case that allowed the Texas Supreme Court to clarify a murky area of the law that has been abused by unscrupulous lawyers to rob injured parties of their rightful choice of venue. The Court’s ruling effectively shuts the door on such underhanded litigation tactics and protects the rights of Texans and Texas companies to choose when, where, and even whether to file suit to recover for their injuries. Read the Texas Supreme Court’s decision here.
June 2018 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry secured a victory for the firm’s clients in a breach of contract case stemming from a failed business purchase agreement. The lawsuit was filed seeking to a lawsuit seeking to force the sale of the fencing company our clients have owned and operated for more than 40 years. After the threat of a forced sale was defeated by establishing the contract was invalid and unenforceable, Tom was able to establish the would-be purchaser had misrepresented himself, his company, and his financial commitment to the purchase, leading to a favorable resolution for a mere fraction of the original demand.
January 2018 – Tom Stauch secured a final judgment based on the 2017 arbitration award in favor of his client against her former divorce lawyers and their law firm. The defendants were Board Certified Family Lawyers in Dallas and serve as officers of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, but were found to be negligent in connection with their representation, including their failure to disclose potential conflicts of interest based upon their own prior work on the client’s marital property agreement. Some of the damages awarded were disgorged legal fees originally charged by the lawyers during the divorce trial, based upon a breach of their fiduciary duties to the client.
December 2017 – Tom Stauch assisted the firm’s assisted care facility client with the resignation of a troublesome employee, and TWCC claim for unemployment benefits.
December 2017 – After a detailed investigation, Tom Stauch negotiated a release of all claims from a disgruntled former sales manager who asserted dubious claims of wrongful termination and sexual harassment against one of the firm’s builder clients and its project manager. The specific terms of the settlement are confidential, but no consideration beyond the employee’s earned commissions and benefits were paid.
October 2017 – Tom Stauch orchestrated the settlement of construction defect claims related to roofing, framing, window and door flashing, and stucco installation in a 64-unit condominium regime with claimed damages exceeding $2.5 million.
September 2017 – Tom Stauch, fraud and breach of fiduciary duty asserted by a corporation against its former President. The client was accused of self-dealing and failure to repay a note, and those claims were resolved by summary judgment in the client’s favor.
August 2017 – Tom Stauch represented an elderly couple of retired missionaries who were getting nowhere with their homebuilder in response to warranty claims concerning foundation defects and a failed retaining wall. Following a pre-suit mediation, the homebuilder agreed to buy back the home, allowing the clients to relocate to assisted living for the next phase of life.
June 2017 – In a three-week trial in Tarrant County, Tom Stauch defended his HOA client against claims for breach of loan agreements made by former officers and directors of the HOA. Of the more than $1 million in claimed damages, approximately $75,000 was awarded, which was further offset by findings of breach of fiduciary duty against two of the three former directors and a recovery of $18,000 in damages on the HOA’s own claims.
April 2017 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry secured a settlement with their client’s former business partner and IP lawyer, who conspired to obtain and utilize the client’s intellectual property. After suit in state court, improper removal to federal court and remand, the case was settled for a confidential sum plus ongoing business considerations.
December 2016 – Before having to file an answer to the lawsuit, Tom Stauch secured a voluntary dismissal of all claims against his clients after a single meeting with the general contractor and its counsel to discuss the cause and potential remedies of ongoing building envelope and water intrusion issues in a physician’s building.
October 2016 – Tom Stauch was instrumental in resolving a multi-party litigation related to roofing and framing defects at condominium community in Austin, Texas. The settlement was primarily funded with contributions from insurance carriers for the subcontractors, as opposed to the firm’s developer and general contractor clients.
March 2016 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry filed suit on behalf of a Texas railroad contractor against a local general contractor that refused to pay for $188,000 of the completed work on a public improvement project in Bryan, Texas. Following suit, the general contractor stubbornly refused to pay, choosing instead to aggressively litigate with local counsel from College Station. After more than two years of litigation, the firm won summary judgment on its contract claims, resulting in a judgment of more than $350,000. The judgment has since been settled and paid in full.
July 2015 – Tom Stauch won summary judgment on behalf of his roofing contractor client accused of negligence when the employee of an independent contractor fell and was severely injured.
May 2015 – When a national roofing material supplier refused to honor its warranty on one of Dallas’ iconic commercial showrooms, Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry filed suit for the building owner against the supplier of the roof and the contractor who installed it. N&S was able to negotiate a settlement with the now bankrupt roofing contractor’s insurance carrier, but was forced to continue with protracted litigation against the stubborn manufacturer and the two firms hired to defend the claims. The firm’s client ultimately settled before trial for more than 75 times the manufacturer’s final offer at mediation.
April 2015 – Tom Stauch negotiated a contract for the construction and purchase of a building for a new dental practice in Richardson, Texas.
June 2014 – Ryan Gentry successfully brokered a mediated settlement agreement in a suit seeking partition of family lands.
May 2014 – Ryan Gentry and Matt Nowak represented a public adjusting company after the property owner declared bankruptcy. Matt and Ryan were able to successfully negotiate a settlement from the Estate’s funds with the bankruptcy trustee.
April 2014 – Ryan Gentry obtained a dismissal without payment of all claims lodged against a local apartment community relating to a slip-and-fall claim by a visitor.
March 2014 – Ryan Gentry defended a small contractor from the claims of an over-zealous collection agency and obtained a full dismissal without payment.
February 2014 – As part of his growing employment practice, Ryan Gentry represented two North Texas companies in connection with Wage and Hour Audits by the United States Department of Labor.
January 2014 – Ryan Gentry defended a local small business in Federal Court against allegations of unpaid overtime wages.
January 2014 – Ryan Gentry represented the purchaser in complex stock and asset purchase transaction with a seven-figure total deal value.
September 2013 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry successfully defended a homeowner wrongfully targeted for foreclosure by his bank.
July 2013 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry obtained summary judgment on behalf of a large custom home builder against a claim by a home owner’s association that sought indemnity from the home builder.
August 2012 – Ryan Gentry successfully represented a local veterinarian in a legal malpractice case against his prior counsel. Ryan succeeded in negotiating a favorable settlement of the client’s claim without the necessity of filing a lawsuit.
August 2012 – After victory in the trial court, Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry defended and won the appeal of a deed restriction dispute involving the construction of a two-story home in Austin. See the full story here.
July 2012 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry recovered a substantial settlement in a legal malpractice dispute over the client’s former lawyers’ failure to adequately investigate and prosecute the client’s personal injury claim, failure to respond to a motion for summary judgment resulting in the dismissal of the majority of his causes of action, and subsequent attempts to mislead the client regarding these failures.
December 2011 – Tom Stauch argued before the Fifth Court of Appeals in Dallas to defend the summary judgment granted in favor of a custom homebuilder client in June 2010. The Court of Appeals took less than one month to render its opinion affirming the decision of the trial court and awarding court costs. The opinion is scheduled for publication.
October 2011 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry successfully defended a well-known Dallas and Collin County Realtor in litigation over her role in the sale of a new home damaged by flood waters in East Dallas. In addition to defending the action and negotiating a favorable settlement, lawyers for Nowak & Stauch filed suit against the home builder’s insurance carrier to obtain coverage for the client based upon her dual role as owner and officer of the company that sold the home. Mr. Stauch and Mr. Gentry won summary judgment against the insurance carrier that refused to provide a defense for the firm’s client, resulting in payment of the firm’s fees incurred in defending the underlying case, as well as those fees incurred in pursuing the client’s claim for defense costs against the carrier.
September 2011 – Tom Stauch obtained insurance coverage for a homebuilder client sued by the purchasers of a new home for construction defects and misrepresentations following flooding of the property. Even after insurance counsel was appointed to defend the suit, Mr. Stauch continued to participate in the defense of his client, helping to negotiate a confidential settlement of the homeowners’ claims with no out-of-pocket contribution from the homebuilder.
June 2011 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry represented a young man wrongfully accused of stealing trade secrets and violating a non-compete by his former employer. Tom and Ryan executed an aggressive defense strategy, deposing their client’s former supervisor and the key client at issue, utterly disproving the claims and creating exposure for the employer for tortious interference. As a result of their decisive actions, the employer’s claims were dismissed in less than sixty days. The client paid nothing to his former employer for the dismissal, and the swift resolution minimized his legal expenses.
March 2011 – Tom Stauch and Ryan Gentry defended Lake Travis homeowners sued by their neighbors for violating a deed restriction prohibiting the construction of a two-story home. The firm successfully defended the claims and established that the deed restriction in question was invalid and unenforceable, allowing its clients to continue building their dream home.
February 2011 – Tom Stauch won an arbitration for a homebuilder in Austin against a former buyer whose contract was terminated for failure to close when the buyer could not obtain financing. In arbitration, the buyer was found to have breached the contract, which was determined not to be contingent upon financing, and was ordered to pay the homebuilder the remaining deposits due, plus interest and attorney’s fees.
October 2010 – Tom Stauch resolved a multi-party lawsuit and arbitration filed by homeowners over construction and design defects, including recovery of defense and indemnity claims against multiple subcontractors.
June 2010 – Tom Stauch obtained a summary judgment in favor of a custom homebuilder client sued for negligent construction practices in connection with a slip and fall and injury to a social guest of the owners approximately two years after closing.
April 2009 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a subcontractor in a commercial construction dispute before a Bell County jury involving a local general contractor. Although the general contractor sued for breach of contract, demanding more than $350,000, Nowak and Bouchér obtained a verdict in favor of the subcontractor in excess of $400,000 in damages and attorney’s fees.
January 2009 – Tom Stauch successfully defended a homebuilder against claims of breach of contract, construction defect, fraud and violations of the DTPA filed in connection with separate but related million dollar (plus) build jobs in McKinney, Texas. After the favorable settlement of both cases, Mr. Stauch was retained by one of the homeowners to pursue a claim against the concrete subcontractor responsible for substantial defects in the insulate concrete forms foundation system and water penetration problems resulting from same. That claim was ultimately settled for an amount in excess of $100,000.
December 2008 – Tom Stauch successfully defended a national homebuilder and its affiliated mortgage company against claims of fraud, DTPA violations and breach of contract, and secured a judgment in the amount of $76,934 on a counterclaim for breach of contract against the defaulting buyers. The buyers subsequently attempted to vacate the award in the district court. Mr. Stauch successfully defended the award, which was then confirmed in a final judgment that included an additional award of attorneys’ fees based upon the buyers’ unjustified refusal to abide by the arbitration award.
November 2008 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a large East Texas employer before a Titus County jury in a nonsubscriber on-the-job injury case in which the plaintiff was injured from a pallet jack. Judgment was rendered for the firm’s client even though the Court excluded all evidence relating to drug use within 48-hours of the accident.
August 2008 – Tom Stauch filed suit in Denton County and obtained a temporary injunction against multiple defendants, including a local oil and gas exploration and operating company accused of fraud in a real estate transaction, breach of contract, and tortious interference with contract.
May 2008 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a national processing company against claims of negligence and leveraged a settlement from the third party manufacturer for half the judgment.
April 2008 – Tom Stauch defended a local homebuilder on claims of contract and deceptive trade practices arising from a defective slab. Homeowners’ recovery was limited to return of deposits and attorney’s fees, without any findings of misrepresentation or fraud.
March 2008 – Matt Nowak successfully argued a motion to disqualify opposing counsel as tribunal counsel in a case involving an ex-officer and board of director of an S-corporation suing the company for breach of contract, fraud, and breaches of fiduciary duties.
March 2008 – Tom Stauch successfully defended a national homebuilder accused of breach of contract, construction defects and deceptive trade practices, and obtained a judgment that cancelled the claimants’ lis pendens, and awarded $177,456 in damages to the homebuilder.
February 2008 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a national manufacturer and distributor of building materials before a Hays County jury in a “road rage” incident involving one of its salesmen. The plaintiff was forced to settle the case for a nominal amount after voir dire and the defendant’s expert testified.
February 2008 – Tom Stauch filed suit and obtained a temporary injunction against a former salesman / installer to prevent him from tortious interference with existing customers of the firm’s client – a local home theater company.
December 2007 – Matt Nowak successfully collected money owed for a national food distributor in a collection action by forcing defendant to settle with agreed upon judgment to be filed.
November 2007 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a national processing company before a Dallas County jury in a trucking accident case in which the truck driver (the firm’s client) rear-ended the plaintiff. The jury only awarded past medical expenses of $750.00, which was only 10% of the plaintiff’s last demand.
September 2007 – Matt Nowak successfully represented a commercial subcontractor in protest / appeal in bid process selection of government construction contract.
May 2007 – Tom Stauch settled a builder client’s claims against multiple subcontractors for a confidential sum.
May 2007 – Tom Stauch went to trial to enforce a prior settlement between his client, an Austin real estate developer, and multiple landowners. After a judgment and permanent injunction was rendered in favor of the developer, Nowak & Stauch successfully defended a mandamus appeal and restricted appeal to the Third Court of Appeals in Austin.
April 2007 – Tom Stauch won a summary judgment on behalf of a real estate developer, declaring an implied easement exists where a subterranean propane tank system was installed without a properly recorded express easement.
March 2007 – Tom Stauch won a summary judgment for a high profile Dallas realtor accused of breach of contract, DTPA violations, fraud, and breach of contract. Nowak & Stauch then successfully defended the plaintiff’s appeals to the Dallas Court of Appeals and twice before the Texas Supreme Court.
March 2007 – Tom Stauch successfully defended a Fortune 500 food processing company and its Mexican subsidiary in a $58 million breach of contract and fraud claim filed by a North Texas grain supplier in Hidalgo County, Texas – routinely rated as one of the most dangerous venues for corporate defendants in America. Nowak & Stauch not only returned a zero verdict in favor of their clients, but successfully proved fraud against the grain supplier and its testing agency, and recovered $1.1 million in damages and attorney’s fees.
January 2007 – Tom Stauch completed the successful defense of a multi-million dollar claim for breach of a lot option contract and specific performance against his client – a national real estate developer and homebuilder. The claims were dismissed without a trial.
November 2006 – Matt Nowak filed suit in Tarrant County and obtained a temporary injunction on behalf of a Fortune 500 client against multiple defendants accused of violating their covenants not to compete. The case was resolved when the defendants agreed not to engage in similar business for a period of one year.
November 2006 – Matt Nowak negotiated a favorable settlement in a dispute between a commercial subcontractor and its insurance company over additional premiums claimed after audit of the client’s records.
October 2006 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a commercial subcontractor in Galveston County, in which the County withheld retainage on contract due to illegal wage violations. The claim was settled favorably for the firm’s client.
August 2006 – Matt Nowak argued a motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction in Dallas County on behalf of a Fortune 500 poultry producer. The Court dismissed the case and awarded attorneys’ fees in favor of the firm’s client against the plaintiff.
August 2006 – Matt Nowak negotiated a favorable settlement on behalf of a defendant in which the defendant only paid property damage in a trucking accident case.
August 2006 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a national processing company before a Titus County jury in a nonsubscriber on-the-job injury case, forcing the plaintiff to settle the case for less than what the defendant offered at mediation.
July 2006 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a national processing company before a Rockwall County jury in a trucking accident case. The plaintiffs settled for a nominal amount during voir dire.
December 2005 – Matt Nowak defended a national food processing company before an El Paso County Jury in a non-subscriber on-the-job injury case. The firm negotiated a post-judgment resolution whereby the client’s insurance company paid the entire settlement on behalf of the client.
December 2004 – Matt Nowak successfully defended a Fortune 500 company’s trucking operation before a Dallas County jury. In this trucking accident case, 30% contributory negligence was found against the plaintiff even though the defendant company’s truck driver ran a red light. The jury only rendered judgment for past medical expenses and pain and suffering, which was a mere 25% of plaintiff’s last demand.