Martin E. ThornthwaiteMartin Thornthwaite Clark Hill
Martin E. Thornthwaite
Martin E. Thornthwaite primarily represents business clients in the areas of employment law and commercial litigation. He specializes in representing clients in noncompetition and trade secrets litigation. Martin also represents clients in complex business litigation and arbitration matters, including contract, deceptive trade practice, fraud, fiduciary duty, financial suitability, and tortious interference claims.
Martin prepares and reviews employment agreements, separation agreements, waivers of liability, and company policies and procedures including employee handbooks. He represents both businesses and individuals including C-level executives, doctors, and salespeople regarding contract preparation, negotiation, and review. In addition, Martin defends clients against discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wage and hour, and unemployment benefit claims. Martin conducts internal client investigations regarding discrimination and sexual harassment and assault allegations. He has also assisted clients with cybercrime investigations and training.
He has extensive experience defending against claims involving the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). He has successful jury trial and appellate experience in consumer litigation matters.
Martin also serves as outside counsel for an oilfield services company and its subsidiaries in oilfield services disputes and with respect to employment matters.
- Obtained judgment on behalf of oilfield services client against oil company in litigation over services provided and garnished oil company's bank account in subsequent garnishment action in the 380th Judicial District Court in Collin County, Texas (Cause No. 380-04492-2015; Cause No. 380-00547-2016).
- Obtained judgment against oilfield contractor and payment in complete satisfaction of judgment including principal amount due, attorneys' fees and costs in litigation regarding nonpayment for services provided by oilfield services client in the County Court at Law No. 2 in Midland County, Texas (Cause No. CC18061).
- Obtained judgment on behalf of oilfield services client for the principal amount due, attorneys' fees, and costs against oilfield operator in the 98th Judicial District Court in Travis County, Texas (Cause No. D-1-GN-15-003469).
- Obtained judgment on behalf of oilfield services client for the principal amount due, attorneys' fees, and costs against oilfield operator in the 29th Judicial District Court in Palo Pinto County, Texas (Cause No. C46715).
- Obtained liens against mineral property in various counties in Texas on behalf of oilfield services clients to secure payment for services and material provided.
- Served as second chair in Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration hearing and successfully obtained a finding of liability and rescission damages against global investment bank and securities firm in auction rate securities matter. See FINRA Award no. 09-01485.
- Obtained summary judgment on behalf of real estate company against an architectural firm for breach of commercial lease in the 193rd Judicial District Court in Dallas.
- Obtained summary judgment on breach of contract claims asserted by engineering and design firm client against the defendant company and obtained summary judgment and dismissal of defendant's counterclaim for breach of contract in the 116th Judicial District Court in Dallas.
- Obtained a temporary injunction following a contested hearing in the 193rd Judicial District Court in Dallas related to the client's conversion claim for the return of property wrongfully held by the defendant.
- Obtained a post-judgment writ of garnishment and successfully garnished defendant's corporate bank account to satisfy client's judgment.
- Served as lead associate in a FINRA arbitration matter regarding suitability and breach of fiduciary duty claims and negotiated a complete dismissal with prejudice on behalf of two Brokers/Registered Investment Advisors (RIA) without payment of any funds to Claimant.
- Served as lead associate in a FINRA arbitration matter regarding suitability and breach of fiduciary duty claims and obtained a favorable settlement following mediation below the Form U4 reporting threshold on behalf of two Brokers/RIA.
- Successfully represented a major insurance company as subrogee of insured and obtained a judgment for the entire amount of damages sought in Dallas District Court following a bench trial in a negligence action against an auto repair business.
- Worked with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation to suspend a towing company's license, obtained a Cease and Desist Order against the towing company, and recovered funds to fully satisfy pro bono client's Judgment against the towing company for illegally towing and selling his vehicle.
Labor & Employment
- Secured a permanent injunction against the defendants, including a former employee and a competing company, in a non-competition lawsuit which prohibits defendants from competing as detailed in the judgment through October 31, 2020, and also acknowledges the parties’ agreement that the defendant competing company will cease marketing, selling, or servicing all personal lines insurance through October 31, 2020, in the 348th Judicial District Court of Tarrant County, Texas (Cause No. 348-301298-18).
- Obtained a temporary injunction against defendants, a former manager/office head and an insurance business competitor, after a contested multi-day injunction hearing that, among other restrictions, prohibited competition with respect to writing insurance policies within 75 miles of the client insurance company's Fort Worth corporate office. A Final Judgment and Permanent Injunction was later secured against the defendants including an award of $350,000 and a permanent injunction through March 31, 2019, in the 67th Judicial District Court of Tarrant County, Texas (Cause No. 067-291420-17).
- Obtained a temporary restraining order and an agreed temporary injunction against a client's former branch manager consistent with the non-compete and non-solicitation covenants of the former branch manager's employment agreement after the employee attempted to gain employment with a competitor in the 79th Judicial District Court in Jim Wells County, Texas (Cause No. 16-05-55994-CV).
- Obtained a temporary injunction against a former branch manager after a multi-day hearing and later secured permanent injunctions against former manager and competitor prohibiting competition with oilfield services client within 150 miles of client's branch location in Andrews, Texas and a six-figure monetary judgment against the former manager (claims against the competitor were confidentially settled) in the 244th Judicial District Court in Ector County, Texas (Cause No. C-139, 425).
- Rejected settlement offers and secured a complete dismissal of a lawsuit brought by a former branch manager against oilfield services client for alleged breach of an employment agreement and wrongful termination in the 161st Judicial District Court in Ector County, Texas (Cause No. B-138, 802).
- Secured a Final Judgment and Permanent Injunction against a former employee of an internal medicine professional association in the 16th Judicial District Court in Denton County, Texas.
- Represent a national ready-mix concrete and aggregate products company in nonsubscriber cases by employees against the company in Texas.
- Preparation of client's Affirmative Action Plan (AAP) for government contractors for submission to the Department of Labor's Employment Standards Administration's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP).
- Secured a temporary restraining order in Denton County district court on behalf of client against a former employee for violating his non-compete and confidentiality agreement.
- Won a reversal on appeal in a Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) Appeal Tribunal hearing on behalf of client regarding a Determination on Payment of Unemployment Benefits.
- Obtained a Final Judgment and Permanent Injunction in Dallas County district court on behalf of a global dental products company against a former sales representative for theft of confidential information and other company property.
- Review and analysis of manager and executive employment agreements for oilfield services client.
- Internal Investigations:
- Conducted an internal client investigation into employees' claims of racial discrimination.
- Conducted an internal client investigation into employee's claims regarding alleged discrimination on the basis of past military service and retaliation for reporting of alleged illegal activity.
- Conducted an internal client investigation into alleged assaults by employee against another employee.
Consumer Financial Litigation
- Represent mulitple finanical services provider clients in Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) litigation and arbitrations in Texas and nationally.
- Successfully represented national credit reporting agency on appeal and oral argument before the Tenth Circuit after obtaining summary judgment including dismissal of Plaintiff's claims under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and the Colorado Consumer Credit Reporting Act (CCCRA). Wright v. Experian Information Solutions, Inc. et al., No. 12-cv-03268-CMA-CBS, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 112876 (D. Col. August 14, 2014), aff'd, 805 F.3d 1232 (10th Cir. 2015).
- Served as second chair in a jury trial in federal court in the District of Colorado and obtained a complete defense verdict on behalf of national credit reporting agency. See Case No. 1:09-cv-00040-WJM-KMT; 10/15/12 Final Judgment (Dkt. No. 236).
- Obtained a complete dismissal of all claims against credit reporting agency with no recovery to plaintiffs in a FCRA/CCCRA lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado.
- Obtained a judgment and damages against the plaintiff on client's counterclaim in an FCRA lawsuit in the Northern District of Texas.
- Obtained a complete dismissal of all claims against credit reporting agency with no recovery to plaintiff in an FCRA lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.
- Obtained a complete dismissal of all claims against credit reporting agency with no recovery to plaintiff in an FCRA lawsuit in the Southern District of Texas.
- Obtained a complete dismissal of all claims against credit reporting agency in a lawsuit in federal court in the Southern District of Florida in which the plaintiff alleged violations of the FCRA.
- Successfully negotiated with plaintiff's counsel and secured a complete dismissal of all claims against credit reporting agency with no recovery to plaintiff in an FCRA lawsuit in the Southern District of Florida.
- The Four Horsemen of the Employment Industry, Strasburger's Employment Breakfast Series (May 2017)
- Non-Competition Agreements: Drafting, Litigating and Related Issues, Collin County Bar Association (September 2016)
- Non-Competes, Theft-of-Trade Secrets and Confidential Information, Strasburger's Business & Law Forum (May 2016)
- Take a Byte Out of Cybercrime, Strasburger's Employment Law Breakfast Series (December 2015)
- Horrible Bosses and the Workplace Bully, Strasburger's Employment Law Breakfast Series (May 2015)
- Civil Case Law Update, Collin County Bench Bar Conference (May 2015)
- Holiday Cheer and Plans for Next Year, Strasburger's Employment Law Breakfast Series (December 2013)
- BYOD BEWARE: Likes, Tweets, Tags, and Other Things That Aren't Private at Work, Strasburger's Employment Law Breakfast Series (May 2013)
- Summertime Hiring and Firing: Don't Get Burned, Strasburger's Employment Law Breakfast Series, (May 2012)
- Employee Privacy: Important Information for Businesses Regarding Monitoring Employee Communications and Computer Usage, Strasburger's Employment Law Breakfast Series (September 2010)
- Job Applicant's Claim That Employer Willfully Violated The FCRA Survives But Court Denies Class Certification, Strasburger Consumer Financial Litigation Blog (February 2015)
- District Court Finds Consumer Reporting Agencies' Procedures Regarding the Reporting and Reinvestigation of a Tax Lien on Consumer's Credit Files Were Reasonable as a Matter of Law, Strasburger Consumer Financial Litigation Blog (January 2015)
- Big Mac Joint Employer Attack, Strasburger Employment Law Blog (January 2015)
- On Your Way Out The Door, Keep Your Hands In Your Pockets, iP Frontline (November 2011)
- Employee Privacy: Going, Going, .... - An Analysis of City of Ontario v. Quon, Privacy and the Attorney-Client Privilege, and Emerging Monitoring Technology, ABA Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice Section Newsletter (Fall 2010)
- Employers Should Pay Close Attention to Two Retaliation Cases Set for Hearing During the Supreme Court's Next Term, Strasburger Labor & Employment Newsletter (August 2010)
- UPDATE - Employee Privacy: When are Employee Text Messages on Government-Issued Devices Protected?, Strasburger Labor & Employment Newsletter (June 2010)
- Employee Privacy: When are Employee Text Messages on Government-Issued Device Protected? Strasburger Labor & Employment Newsletter (January 2010)
- Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Notice - Final Rule to Implement Amendments to the FMLA Becomes Effective on January 16, 2009, Strasburger Labor & Employment Newsletter (January 2009)
- Company E-mail Policies May Defeat Attorney-Client Privilege, Strasburger Business & Law Newsletter (December 2007)
- Business Update - Revised I-9 For Employment Eligibility Verification, Strasburger Business & Law Newsletter (November 2007)