Richard H. Grafton

Principal


Email Address: rgrafton@germer-austin.com

Phone: 512.472.0288

Location: Austin Office

Overview

Richard H. Grafton specializes in products liability, personal injury, property damage, breach of contract, and construction defect litigation. Rich has tried cases throughout the state of Texas, including in some of the more notorious venues for corporate clients. Rich has extensive experience defending alleged defects in automobiles, light trucks, tires, heavy trucks, commercial vehicles, recreational vehicles and trailers, manufactured housing, consumer products, commercial construction projects, and industrial equipment. Rich has an undergraduate engineering degree and spent six years working in the construction industry before attending law school. He later received an M.B.A and his J.D. with honors. Rich relies upon his technical background and business experience, as many cases involve complex engineering and financial issues. Rich is admitted to all federal courts in Texas. He has been recognized in The Best Lawyers in America, a peer-reviewed publication by Best Lawyers, is “AV” rated by Martindale-Hubbell legal directory, and is a member of Product Liability Advisory Council (PLAC). When not working, Rich is an full time husband and dad of three kids, a part time traveler and outdoorsman, and occasionally spends time in the woods hunting.

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Professional Background

  • Joined Germer Beaman & Brown in 2008 after 16 years at another firm in Austin

Bar Admissions

  • State Bar of Texas – 1991
  • Admitted to practice before the following courts:
    • All Texas state courts
    • United States District Court for the Northern, Southern, Eastern and Western Districts of Texas

Education

  • University of Houston
    • Juris Doctor – with honors – 1991
    • Masters in Business Administration – 1989
  • University of Alabama
    • Bachelor of Science – Industrial Engineering – 1982

Recognitions and Honors

  • Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating: AV® Preeminent 5.0 out of 5
  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America, a peer-reviewed publication by Best Lawyers since 2007

Professional Memberships and Affiliations

  • Member, Product Liability Advisory Council (PLAC)
  • Member, Austin Bar Association
  • Texas Bar Association
  • Texas Association of Defense Counsel

Representative Experience

Rich defends cases throughout the country, though primarily in Texas.  He recently obtained a defense verdict in San Antonio federal court, in a burn death case involving a commercial truck where the allegation was lack of an adequate egress system.  He earlier obtained a defense verdict for the same manufacturer in Houston in a fire death case focused on engine design.  He has helped try death cases to a defense verdict for a tire manufacturer and for a large tire retailer both involving tire tread detachment allegations.    He  led the effort to obtain a summary judgment in a truck  rollover case in Oklahoma, and successfully helped to resolve a fire death case pending in Wyoming for a vehicle manufacturer.  Rich’s motor vehicle-related experience also includes claims involving handling, stability, roof strength, restraints, fire, fuel systems, warnings/instructions, metallurgical concerns, and fabrication issues.  Rich has represented both general contractors and subcontractors in construction disputes involving claims of defective workmanship and warranty claims, including roofing, plumbing, underground utilities, temperature controls, structure, and water proofing issues.  He also practices before the Texas Motor Vehicle Commission regarding dealer/manufacturer franchise disputes, where he has represented both dealers and manufacturers before the Commission.

Interests

  • Hunting
  • Travel
  • U.S. History

Civic Involvement

  • Board of Directors, Regents School of Austin
  • Volunteer, Mobile Loaves & Fishes

Beaumont:

GERMER PLLC
550 Fannin, Suite 400
Beaumont, Texas 77701
Ph: 409.654.6700
Fax: 409.835.2115
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Austin:

GERMER BEAMAN & BROWN PLLC
301 Congress Avenue, Suite 1700
Austin, Texas 78701
Ph: 512.472.0288
Fax: 512.472.0721
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Houston:

GERMER PLLC
America Tower, 2929 Allen Parkway,
Suite 2900, Houston, TX 77019
Ph: 713.650.1313
Fax: 713.739.7420
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