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George W. Vie III

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George Vie is an appellate litigation attorney with three decades of experience. He has been Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization for more than 23 years. George focuses his practice on appellate work, federal civil law, and governmental litigation.

George began his legal career in 1983 as a legal assistant with a Galveston law firm while attending the University of Houston as an undergraduate, obtaining his Bachelor of Science in Jurisprudence. He graduated magna cum laude and was selected for membership in Phi Kappa Phi.

George then attended The University of Texas School of Law while working full-time as a legal assistant with an Austin law firm. After graduating with his Juris Doctor in 1988, George remained with his Austin firm as an associate attorney and immediately began working on civil appeals and federal civil rights litigation. In 1990, George returned to Galveston and joined Mills Shirley LLP, continuing to practice civil appeals and federal civil rights litigation. In addition, George began representing government entities, which he continues to represent to this day.

George has served as lead counsel in over 400 appeals and original proceedings prosecuted in the Texas Supreme Court, Texas state appellate courts, the United States Supreme Court, and federal appellate courts. George has presented oral arguments in the Texas Supreme Court, the First, Second, Third, Fifth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Thirteenth, and Fourteenth Texas Courts of Appeals, and the Fifth and Eighth Federal Circuits, including the Fifth Circuit en banc.

George previously served as a city attorney and has served for over 20 years as General Counsel for the Galveston County Consolidated Drainage District, handling property issues and eminent domain cases. He has represented other municipalities and counties in local and state-funded condemnation matters. He has also represented individual property owners, companies, and homeowners associations against the Texas Department of Transportation, the City of Houston, and the Port of Houston. George has also served as lead counsel in natural resources cases – in conjunction with the Texas Attorney General’s office and the Texas General Land Office – on behalf of coastal communities for cases in state and federal trial courts and state and federal courts of appeals.

George’s appeals have covered a wide range of litigation, including governmental tort claims, personal injury, employment discrimination including Title VII, ADA, Equal Pay Act and ERISA, CERCLA, commercial litigation, professional malpractice, trusts and estate, special appearances, injunctions, default judgments, and writs of habeas corpus. He has also served as lead counsel in original appellate proceedings, including writs of mandamus in discovery, venue, post­judgment, and arbitration cases.

Because of his experience in litigation, contested hearings, and appeals, George has also assisted the trial counsel of many other law firms with complex motion practice, preparation of jury charges, formal charge conferences, special appearances, and jurisdictional challenges. He has also been retained many times as local counsel in federal civil trials in both diversity and federal question cases.

George has been invited to speak before a number of organizations and associations, including the Houston and Galveston Bar Associations, the Texas Municipal League Intergovernmental Risk Pool, the Texas Association of Defense Counsel, the National Institute of Municipal Law Officers, and the Judicial Education Conference held by the Harris County District Court Judges.

He has been a Texas Super Lawyer for the past eight consecutive years, and has been recognized as one of Texas’ Top Rated Lawyers in appellate litigation by ALM. Additionally, George is one of a small selection of lawyers to be awarded the AV Preeminent Rating from Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™, which recognizes strong legal ability and high ethical standards.

Education

  • J.D. University of Texas School of Law, Austin, TX
  • B.S. Jurisprudence Magna Cum Laude University of Houston

Admissions

  • Texas
  • Hawai'i
  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces
  • United States District Court, Southern District of Texas
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Texas
  • United States District Court, Western District of Texas
  • United States District Court, District of Hawai’i
  • United States District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin

Memberships & Affiliations

  • American Bar Association (Council of Appellate Lawyers)
  • State Bar of Texas
  • Hawai’i State Bar Association
  • Fifth Circuit Bar Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Houston Bar Association (Appellate Practice section)
  • Texas City Attorneys Association
  • Texas Association of Defense Counsel (Amicus Curiae committee)
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Sustaining Life Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
  • Keeton Fellow, Texas Law School Foundation
  • The Dean’s Roundtable, University of Texas School of Law

Publications, Seminars, and Speaking Engagements

  • “Appellate Issues with Dispositive Motions,” 2016 Annual Attorney Workshop, Texas Municipal League Intergovernmental Risk Pool
  • “Texas Recreational Use Statute Update,” 2014 Judicial Education Conference, Harris County
  • “Recent Federal Cases,” Annual Attorney Workshop, Texas Municipal League Intergovernmental Risk Pool
  • “A Comparison of State and Federal Deadlines,” Winter Seminar, Texas Association of Defense Counsel
  • “A Team Approach: How the Appellate Lawyer Can Help at Trial, and How the Trial Lawyer Can Assist the Appeal,” Summer Seminar, Texas Association of Defense Counsel
  • “Jury Charges and Non-Jury Findings,” Galveston County Bar Association
  • “Ten Things I Wish Trial Counsel Had Not Done,” Galveston County Bar Association
  • “Recent Texas Cases,” Annual Attorney Workshop, Texas Municipal League Intergovernmental Risk Pool
  • “Qualified and Derivative Immunity of Public Officials,” Governmental Liability Seminar, Houston Bar Association CLE
  • “Varying Perspectives on Regulations of Minors--Constitutionality of Non-Emergency Curfews,” Mid-Year Seminar, National Institute of Municipal Law Officers
  • “Varying Perspectives on Regulations of Minors--Constitutionality of Non-Emergency Curfews,” Semi-Annual Conference, Texas City Attorneys Association
  • “Federal Court Practice in Western District of Texas,” 52 Texas Bar Journal 1070 (1989)