Profile of Mark Lanier

Mark Lanier is the founder of The Lanier Law Firm, where he serves as the firm's lead litigation counsel.

The recent rush of media accolades, in the wake of a stunning verdict in the nation's first VIOXX trial, obscures as much as illuminates Lanier's true nature and talent. In describing Lanier's courtroom prowess on behalf of his client, Carol Ernst, The Wall Street Journal accurately describes his "theatrical flair...while roaming the courtroom as if it were a stage." Effusive in its praise, The New York Times describes Mr. Lanier as "one of the top civil trial lawyers in America..."

What the news clips can't measure or define is Mr. Lanier's commitment to and passion for his clients. Often motivated by injustice and by a sense of fair play, Mr. Lanier has sought to even the score whether his client is an individual or a large corporation.

Mr. Lanier is recognized as one of the top trial lawyers in the United States. In 2010 the prestigious National Law Journal recognized Lanier as one of the top 40 lawyers of the decade. In 1998 and 2006, The National Law Journal recognized Mr. Lanier as one of nation's Top 10 Trial Attorneys, and in 2006, The NLJ designated him as one of the 100 Most Influential Lawyers in America. The NLJ also named him among the country's 40 top attorneys under the age of 40.

A few years ago, he was named by The American Lawyer magazine as one of the top 45 attorneys in the nation under the age of 45. In a statewide survey of his legal peers published in Texas Monthly magazine, Mr. Lanier has been selected as a "Texas Super Lawyer" in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. In 2002, Texas Lawyer newspaper named Mr. Lanier as one of the top 5 "Go To" personal injury plaintiff attorneys in Texas, and he was named by the same publication as the top personal injury lawyer in the state in 2007. In addition, Texas Lawyer named him its 2005 "Impact Player of the Year."

Mr. Lanier's experience in the courtroom has resulted in feature articles in The Wall Street Journal, The American Lawyer, Texas Lawyer, The New York Times, New York Lawyer, The National Law Journal, Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, Houston Chronicle and Bloomberg, among others. He is also a frequent guest on news shows such as ABC's "Good Morning America" and CNBC's "Squawk Box."

Mr. Lanier has significant courtroom experience and has negotiated numerous significant settlements for his clients across the United States, including:

  • $56 Million verdict against Caterpillar, Inc.
  • A settlement for Retractable Technologies, a syringe manufacturer, in an antitrust case against industry giant Becton Dickinson and Company, the world's largest manufacturer of medical syringes and needles.
  • A verdict on behalf of 21 asbestos victims in February 1998, considered one of the largest asbestos verdicts in U.S. history.
  • In 1993, a substantial verdict for a small oil company in a business fraud case against one of the nation's largest oil providers.
  • Currently, Mr. Lanier represents numerous individuals for personal injuries sustained when they or a loved one took the drug VIOXX, the prescription pain-relief medication that was pulled from the market after being linked to heart attacks and strokes.
  • In addition to individuals, Mr. Lanier also represents corporations, associations and governmental entities.

Mr. Lanier is certified as a personal injury trial specialist by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is licensed to practice in all Texas state and federal courts, as well as the U.S. Supreme Court. Mr. Lanier is also licensed to practice law in New York state. The Lanier Law Firm has offices in Houston; New York City and California and represents clients from all over the world in courtrooms across the United States. He is also frequently asked to instruct other attorneys about his trial techniques in seminars held across the nation.

Mr. Lanier is enthusiastically involved in government and community activities outside the practice of law. He serves on the Board of Trustees of the Committee for Economic Development, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that addresses ongoing critical economic and social issues facing society. Mr. Lanier is often called on by chairmen, presidents, and senior executives from major American corporations and universities for his respected business views on national and international issues.

A strong supporter of his alma mater, Mr. Lanier earned his law degree from Texas Tech University School of Law in 1984. He remains active at Texas Tech by serving on the Law School's Foundation Board. Mr. Lanier was selected as the Texas Tech University School of Law Distinguished Alumnus for 2005.

He is the founder of the Christian Trial Lawyers Association, a nonprofit organization whose goal is to create a network of principled attorneys to minister to others through civic-minded endeavors. Mr. Lanier also teaches a 300 plus member Sunday school class focusing on Biblical Literacy at Champion Forest Baptist Church.

Mr. Lanier lives in Houston with his wife, Becky, and their five children.

Mark Lanier of The Lanier Law Firm discusses his parents and family values.