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Hugh M. Ray, III

Houston Office
Houston Office

600 Travis Street
Suite 7000
Houston, TX 77002
TEL: 713.485.7303 FAX: 713.485.7344

Hugh M. Ray, III is a Principal in McKool Smith's Houston office.  Mr. Ray's practice focuses on complex reorganization, bankruptcy, and commercial litigation.  He has represented publicly traded companies who successfully reorganized in bankruptcy and major creditors in their collection from complex bankruptcies. 

Mr. Ray has helped author rules of professional conduct in Texas and has influenced the 2001-2002 revisions to the Model Rules of Professional Conduct promulgated by the A.B.A.  He is a regular speaker before lawyers and non-lawyers on issues relating to bankruptcy law and legal ethics and as a member of the editorial board of the Young Lawyer Magazine, he penned over a half-dozen articles, including articles on bankruptcy reform.  Mr. Ray served on the Texas State Bar committee charged with drafting and revising the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct, and has acted as subcommittee chair. 

Representative Matters

  •  Schermerhorn et al. v. CenturyLink et al. - Representing CenturyLink in defense of a mass-action lawsuit involving sixty-four plaintiffs in five discrete groups that brought securities fraud claims relating to a sale of control of a distressed company. 

  • In re Particle Drilling Techs., 2009 Bankr. LEXIS 2151 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. July 29, 2009) -- Trial counsel for publicly-traded oilfield technology company in sale of patents free and clear of $300 Million in filed royalty claims.  Lead trial counsel successfully winning "cram-down" plan of reorganization to convey the patents without royalty claims.
  • Bilstat v. Family Express (In re Bilstat), 314 B.R. 603 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. 2004) (successfully defended Family Express).
  • Cage v. Wyo-Ben, et. al. (In re Ramba, Inc.),437 F.3d 457 (5th Cir. 2006), (successfully defended Wyo-Ben at trial level and on appeal)
  • Tile Outlet and JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. v. Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 44130 (S.D. Tex. 2006) (Successfully represented Creditor's Committee by obtaining pre-briefing dismissal of appeals brought by Debtor and secured lender).

Professional & Community Activities

  • Life Fellow of the American Bar Foundation
  • Member American Law Institute, serving on the Member's Consultative Group for the Restatement Third, The Law of American Indians
  • American Bar Association
    • Chair, Young Lawyer Division Professionalism and Ethics Committee, 2001-2002
    • Liaison to the Standing Committee on Professionalism 2000-2002
    • Liaison to the Commission on the Evaluation of the Rules of Professional Conduct 2001-2003
    • Young Lawyer Delegate 1998-2006
    • Business Bankruptcy Committee Subcommittee on Professional Ethics 2007-2008
  • "Master" of the Garland Walker Inn of Court and "Master" of American Inns of Court
  • State Bar of Texas, Voting member Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct Committee, 2000-2008
  • Houston Bar Association
    • Continuing Legal Education Committee, 2006-2009
    • Seminar Subcommittee Chair, 2008-2009
    • Chair of the CLE Institute committee, 2009-2010

Awards & Recognition

  • Board Certified, Business Bankruptcy Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization
  • "AV" Peer-Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Listed in Super Lawyers for Bankruptcy Law
  • Named a "Rising Star" in Texas by Super Lawyers
  • Named one of "Houston's Best Lawyers" by H-Texas Magazine
  • Fellow, College of the State Bar of Texas


Press Releases

Seminars & Speaking Engagements


“Committee Solicitation Issues – The Problems, the Rules and the Enforcers,” National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges, October, 2009. 

Collecting Debts and Judgments Seminar, Speaker and Panelist, Lorman Education Services Houston, Texas, July, 2009.

“Bankruptcy Appeals: Direct Appeals to the Circuit, Interlocutory Appeals, Traps for Beginners, and Ethical Considerations,” Moeller-Foltz American Inns of Court Public Educational Seminar, Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston, Texas, March 13, 2009. 

“What You Need to Know about Bankruptcy Law,” Texas Southern University School of Law, Houston, Texas, October,  2008; February 2010.

Collecting Debts and Judgments Seminar (Moderator); “Ethics Traps for Collection Lawyers” – Presenter/Author; “Practical Techniques for Collecting from Hard-to-get Debtors and Corporate Debtors” – Presenter/Author, Lorman Education Services Sugar Land, Texas, July 15, 2008.

“What Every Business Lawyer Needs to Know about Bankruptcy,” Houston Bar Association, October 25, 2007. 

“BAPCPA Changes the Ethical Landscape for Consumer and Business Practitioners,” State Bar of Texas Bankruptcy Section, London, England, March 2007, and Houston Bar Association Bankruptcy Institute, February 2007. 

“Bankruptcy Mediation Issues,” Davis-Foltz American Inn of Court, January 2007.

“Bankruptcy Reform Act for Everyone: Two Perspectives on the Bankruptcy Reform Act,”  Houston Bar Association Continuing Legal Education Seminar November 30, 2006. 

“Basic Transactional Law,” ABA Spring Meeting, Portland, Oregon, May 19, 2006. 

“Changes to the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct,” Houston Bar Association, February 23, 2006.

“New Bankruptcy Rules,” Moeller-Foltz American Inns of Court, February 2006. 

“Taking the High Ground: Ethical Traps for the Young Lawyer and How to Avoid Them,” ABA Young Lawyer Division National Conference, Louisville, Kentucky, October 2005. 

“10 Things Every Lawyer Needs to Know about Bankruptcy Law,” ABA Young Lawyer Division National Conference, Miami, Florida, May 2005. 

“Representing Nonprofit Organizations,” State Bar of Texas Nonprofit Seminar, Austin, Texas, July 16, 2004. 

“15 Ethics Traps for Young Lawyers,” Houston Bar Association, February 2, 2004. 

“Bankruptcy Ethics Issues,” Houston Bar Association Bankruptcy Section Meeting, December 17, 2003. 

“Moral Bankruptcy - Ethics in the Face of Enron,” ABA Mid-Year Meeting, Seattle Washington, February 2003. 

“Ethics 2000 and Your Practice,” ABA Young Lawyer Division Spring Meeting, Denver, May 2002. 

“The 2005 Bankruptcy Amendments: New Traps Emerge for the Casual Practitioner,” ABA GP/Solo Section The New Lawyer  Volume 4 Number 4, January 2007. 

“Criminal Law for the Business Practitioner,” ABA GP/Solo Law Trends and News Vol. 1. No. 4, August 2005. 

“Impacts of the Bankruptcy Reform Act,” The Young Lawyer  Volume 9, Number 10, July-August 2005. 

“Electronic Case Filing – The Future is Finally Here,” The Young Lawyer  Volume 8, Number 7, April 2004. 

“Negotiating a Westlaw or Lexis Contract,” The Young Lawyer  Volume 8, Number 5, February 2004. 

“Ethics for the Transactional Lawyer,” The Young Lawyer  Volume 7, Number 11, September 2003. 

“The Bankruptcy Reform Act of 2003: Good, Bad & Ugly,” The Young Lawyer  Volume 7 Number 9, June 2003.