Hours of Operation:
  • Daily: 8:30am - 5:30pm & By Appointment
Contact Information:
  • Phone:  281 651-5577    
  • Fax: 832 218-1171    
  • Email:  Contact Us
Nearby Shopping:
Address:
  • 2441 High Timbers Drive
  • Suite 220
  • The Woodlands,   TX   77380
Directions

Business, Civil, Commercial, Construction, Personal Injury, Probate Litigation & Wills

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About Us

 

Focused on Successful Outcomes

When it comes to protecting your business's reputation, understanding its potential exposure, or safeguarding your family's livelihood, you can trust the Law Office of Matthew J. Mussalli, P.C., a Martindale-Hubbell top rated litigation firm. We will guide and help you make informed decisions in order to maximize the likelihood of achieving a desirable outcome.

Our Four Step Formula

LISTEN
             ANALYZE
                               PLAN
                                          EXECUTE

Many prominent attorneys are known for their mesmerizing oral advocacy and power of persuasion skills. Although we are very proud of our ability to advocate orally and in writing for our clients, it is in the art of listening that we truly excel and get to know our clients - inside and out.  Because we have mastered how to actively listen, we know what information is most critical to our clients' cause, we know what to ask and how to best inquire.  We listen to our clients, judges, opposing counsel, adverse witnesses and of course, our jurors.

First and foremost, we readily recognize that as members of the legal profession, we are in a service industry which requires practical, solution-generating, forward thinking and efficient, time sensitive execution. Building on these basic principles, whether we're in the boardroom or the courtroom, we apply extensive legal and life experience, superior strategic planning, intense and targeted preparation, creative resourcefulness, proven advocacy skills and most importantly, the genuine interest and ability to understand what is most important to you. This, along with the communication skills, vision and judgment allow us to deliver your message most effectively.

LARGE FIRM, COMPLEX CASE EXPERIENCE SMALL FIRM INDIVIDUAL ATTENTION, RESPONSIVENESS & FEES

The Law Office of Matthew J. Mussalli, P.C. has attained Martindale-Hubbell's highest rating for legal ability and ethical standards.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

When considering mediation and arbitration, all participants must be mindful of the one, most important component of the ADR setting: it is all about perspective. Understanding each participant's role, posture and objective from inception is a must in order to meaningfully negotiate or represent a client's interest in arbitration.  The firm routinely represents businesses as well as individuals in mediations and arbitrations-both on an ad hoc basis and in connection with pending litigation. In addition, as part of its transactional and consultation work for businesses and individuals, the firm drafts and negotiates ADR provisions suited to fit specific client needs long before a dispute arises. In the event of conflict regarding the enforceability or scope of arbitration provisions, we also represent parties in litigating these matters.

 Business/Corporate Law

Our extensive experience in litigating business matters enhances our ability to effectively assist clients in a non-litigation context. In this regard, we provide the following:

    * Business entity formation (corporations, limited liability companies, professional associations and general and limited partnerships);
    * Drafting, review and negotiation of employment , non-disclosure, non-compete, arbitration and separation agreements;
    * Drafting, review and negotiation of commercial leases;
    * Drafting, review and negotiation of various contracts and business documents, including asset sale and purchase agreements and related terms and conditions.

 Commercial Litigation

The firm handles claims, disputes and litigation arising from conflicts in commerce or business dealings-whether involving single party business-to-business, multiple business parties or individuals involved in litigation with business entities. In light of our diversified practice areas, we often experience substantial overlap between our commercial litigation practice and other practice areas.

Construction Law

We provide a broad spectrum of legal services in assisting construction managers, contractors, design professionals, inspectors, subcontractors and vendors in all phases of commercial and industrial construction projects as well as claims, disputes and litigation arising from such projects. Typical services include contract drafting and negotiation, negotiation of claims and representation in litigation or arbitration involving issues related to acceleration or compression of work; change orders; construction defects; coordination and synchronization of trades; CPM schedule and delay claims; engineering; liquidated and consequential damages; mitigation of damages; personal injury; project management; and termination or default. Our experience in this area ranges from navigating commonplace lien and payment issues encountered on light commercial jobs to cutting edge off-shore marine construction projects involving multiple disciplines and market pressures. Most importantly, we are keenly in tune with the far reaching impact which construction disputes may have on existing business operations, profits, projections and relationships and focus our initial efforts on attempting to keep projects on track and reconciling disputes before protracted litigation is warranted. Nonetheless, when litigation is the chosen route, whether we are representing a Plaintiff or Defendant, our strategy is built around working toward cost effective, yet favorable solutions that make sense.

 Contracts

As part of the firm’s transactional practice, we routinely draft and negotiate various business and personal agreements, including the following as examples: employment agreements (including non-compete, non-disclosure/confidentiality and mandatory arbitration provisions); severance/separation agreements; contracts for professional services; independent contractor agreements; joint venture agreements; asset purchase and sale agreements; partnership agreements; material supply agreements and purchase order terms and conditions; construction agreements and ante-nuptial (“pre-nup”)agreements.

Guardianship & Guardian Ad Litem

In keeping with our personal commitment as attorneys to serve the needs of those whose voices are incapable of being heard due to infancy, mental or physical incompetence or disease process, we offer assistance in initiating, processing and if necessary, litigating guardianship cases in Montgomery, Fort Bend and Harris Counties, Texas. In addition, as a certified Guardian ad Litem, Matthew Mussalli accepts appointments from judges to assist the judiciary in this capacity.

Serious Personal Injury & Wrongful Death

Over the course of our attorneys’ professional careers, we have represented both corporate clients as well as victims and their families, in defending and civilly prosecuting cases involving some of the worst imaginable catastrophic injuries and deaths including brain damage, quadriplegia and other forms of paralyzation, severe burns from contact with caustic chemicals, explosions and fire, de-gloving injuries, permanent loss of a bodily system and long-term diseases related to industrial exposure, to name just a few. Such cases typically fall under the applicable federal and/or state laws and standards of product liability, professional liability, (medical and otherwise), negligence and gross negligence. In such cases, it has been our experience that the single most important element of effective representation and critical key to success is captured in the following phrase: proactive, time sensitive planning and execution. This includes promptly calling upon and retaining industry leaders and well respected consultants and expert witnesses and clear lines of communication with decision-makers. In the overwhelming majority of these cases in particular, companies finding themselves in a somewhat compromised position of having to defend such a case, their insurance carriers and the victims and/or families all want one thing: to settle the case as quickly as possible for a “reasonable amount” of money commensurate with their respective liability. The problem almost universally encountered is that because these cases are emotionally charged, there is often little or no effective communication between the parties until several months or even years have passed, significant legal fees and expenses have mounted, heels have been deeply dug in and all parties are faced with the prospect of having the case decided by a jury. In order to meaningfully represent our clients, we are keenly focused on anticipating pitfalls in communication and penetrating such communication barriers when they are present. Ultimately, if trial is necessary to resolve a dispute, our clients are confident that their position has been firmly articulated and they have made well reasoned and informed decisions in embarking on this course of action. It is our experience that the manner in which we develop cases gives us a distinct advantage when it's time to begin jury selection.

Professional Liability

Our professional liability practice entails defending accountants; architects, engineers and other design professionals; attorneys; financial advisors and brokers; psychologists; real estate agents and social workers for breach of contract, errors and omissions and/or professional negligence and related claims or causes of action.

In egregious cases of malpractice, particularly in which the victim is a child, disabled or elderly, we also civilly prosecute health care professionals, including long term care or rehabilitation facilities and nursing homes.

Wills, Trusts & Probate

We offer will drafting and preparation of related legal documents pertaining to testamentary disposition of assets and legal interests, including codicils, power of attorney instruments, health care proxies and declarations of guardian in the event of incapacity.

About Our Clients

The firm’s corporate clients range from small, family owned, privately held companies with only one employee to businesses whose shares are publicly traded, have locations on different continents and employ thousands. Our individual clients are equally diverse.

Despite the broad diversity of our clients, the companies and individuals whom we represent share commonality in the following respects: 1) they believe in and expect clear and prompt communication; 2) they understand that as the client, there is no such thing as a “silly question;” 3) they take an active role in facilitating our job in representing them by providing us with necessary information on a timely basis; and 4) they are prudent about spending their money and expect the same of us.

Fees

Typically, our fee structure depends upon the nature of the case or matter, its present status and expected course. Our standard practice involves hourly billing for the firm’s professionals on a monthly basis with a retainer held in our trust account, known as an IOLTA account. IOLTA stands for “Interest on Lawyer’s Trust Accounts.” Interest from IOLTA accounts is pooled to provide civil legal aid to the poor and support improvements to the justice system. At the conclusion of each billing cycle, dependent upon our client’s needs and the agreement we have , we may transfer funds from each client’s retainer balance for work performed for that client in the prior month and request that retainers be replenished or preserve the retainer amount and invoice our client for prompt payment. Matters in litigation or expected to involve litigation require a larger retainer amount than those assignments which are more task oriented or of shorter duration. Unless otherwise agreed, at the conclusion of our representation and after all fees and expenses have been satisfied in accordance with our standard billing practices, any unapplied retainer funds in our trust account are refunded to our client.

Under very specific circumstances, this firm also offers contingent, flat fee and alternative or hybrid billing arrangements.

This firm believes that as attorneys, we must take affirmative steps to assist in providing legal services for those most in need and supports pro bono activities, including assisting with such programs through our local bar associations.

Once we learn more about your specific matter and needs, we can offer more detailed information.

The following glossary of select legal terms is intended for general informational purposes only to those unfamiliar with the legal system. It does not constitute the rendering of legal advice to any prospective or existing client nor does it trigger creation of the attorney-client relationship. In addition, definitions of some terms and their context may vary from case to case and jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Therefore, if you have a specific legal issue, you should consult with and retain a licensed attorney.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) – The term used to describe methods of resolving disputes, claims and lawsuits outside the courtroom in arbitration or mediation.

 

Arbitration – Arbitration is the process of having a hearing in a non-judicial setting (outside of the courtroom) while providing final relief to all parties. Arbitration hearings are typically held in law offices, hotel or business center conference rooms. They are presided over by attorneys and sometimes, retired judges. The rules of evidence do not usually apply, however parties do make objections which are ruled upon by the presiding arbitrator. Typically, arbitrations are not recorded and the grounds to appeal an arbitrator’s award are very limited. In most arbitration, some pre-hearing discovery is permitted, but that is up to the presiding arbitrator and is also typically more limited than discovery permissible in a lawsuit. Various arbitration forums exist but the most common in our practice are the American Arbitration Association (AAA), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), and the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA).

 

Arbitration Clause – A provision in a written contract which states that parties agree to submit disputes to arbitration, usually by waiving their right(s) to a jury trial. There is no “standard” arbitration clause, and the specific terms are negotiable subject to the parties’ willingness to negotiate. As a general proposition, public policy favors enforcement of mutually agreed upon arbitration clauses.

 

Arbitration Panel – The members (usually one or three) who will hear evidence and participate in deciding an arbitrated dispute.

 

Arbitrator – One who decides or participates in ruling over a dispute pending in arbitration.

 

Breach of contract- A failure to perform one’s agreed upon duties or promises owed to another person or company.

 

Burden of Proof – The level of proof necessary to substantiate a claim or defense. For example, in civil cases, Plaintiffs have the burden of proving their claims by a preponderance of the evidence as opposed to criminal cases which require the prosecution to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

 

Case Law/Common Law – A body of laws or rules from published cases as decided by trial and appellate courts.

 

Continuance – In its most common usage, a continuance is a postponement of a hearing or trial from a set or scheduled date to another date.

 

Court Reporter – A transcriptionist who takes an oath as an officer of the court to transcribe all questions, answers and any other oral statements and sometimes, non-verbal events which occur during a specific legal proceeding, like a hearing , trial, or deposition. All depositions must be recorded by stenographers in order to use them at a later date.

 

Cross Claim – A claim asserted typically by one Defendant against another.

 

Deposition – A question and answer session during which attorneys ask questions and the witness or deponent provides answers. Depositions usually take place at attorney’s office or elsewhere, like the courthouse, if the court orders that or the parties cannot agree on a specific location. Attorneys, their clients or party representative and court reporters typically attend depositions. Under certain circumstances, others may be present for depositions. Judges do not attend or participate in depositions, although in rare cases, judges may be contacted during a deposition to make certain rulings regarding the manner in which the deposition is taking place or the responses being given by a witness. Attorneys are required to make certain objections during depositions; however because judges do not typically participate in depositions, any objections made by the attorneys may be ruled upon later in the case and usually, at or before trial.

 

Discovery – When used in the context of legal proceedings, discovery is the process of obtaining information from an adverse party about its claims, theories of recovery, any defenses, the identity of any key documents or witnesses and related information. Discovery tools include Depositions, Interrogatories, Requests for Admission, Requests for Production, Request for Entry Upon Land.

 

Docket Control Order (DCO) – An order from the court notifying parties of the deadlines and scheduling of certain events like adding new parties to the case, or conducting depositions of fact or expert witnesses, which take place during the pendency of a lawsuit. Docket Control Orders will also often set forth the trial date. If both sides agree, there are certain portions of a Docket Control Order which may be modified without obtaining the court’s permission. Otherwise, in order to modify a Docket Control Order, permission from the court is required.

 

Hearsay - The hearsay rule will typically prohibit a jury from hearing out of court statements for the truth of their content in a court proceeding. However, there are many exceptions to this rule. Essentially, this means that a witness is usually not permitted to testify about what he or she heard someone else saying.

 

Incapacity – when used in a legal sense, incapacity refers to a lack of mental state or legal status which renders witness or party incapable of performing a certain act, like entering into a contract or testifying in court proceeding.

 

Interrogatories- A set of written questions seeking written answers to those questions to be sworn to or affirmed under oath. Responses to Interrogatories usually have a specific date by which they must be provided to the opposing party.

 

Jury – A body of citizens of the county in which the dispute is pending who will decide the issues of fact submitted to them based on the instruction given by the court.

 

Jury Charge – Instructions read to the jury by the trial judge read after all of the evidence is complete and before jury deliberations begin. A written form of the jury charge is also usually given to the jury to aid in deliberations and to provide specific questions which require specific written answers. Those answers are put on a verdict form.

 

Jury Deliberations – After all evidence and arguments have been made, the process of a jury discussing and analyzing the evidence heard, the instructions from the court and deciding the issues or questions submitted.

 

Jury Selection – The process of selecting suitable jurors from a pool of many citizens who appear for jury duty. Voir Dire is the commonly used French term synonymous with jury selection.

 

Jury Trial – A courtroom hearing during which each party presents its evidence and arguments to the jury before a presiding judge. Usually, a jury trial takes place after all fact and expert discovery has been completed; although in some instances, the court may order or the parties may agree to have certain issues decided by a jury before the rest of discovery has been completed.

 

Objection – A procedure by which a party takes exception to the admission of a certain piece of evidence or other matter.

 

Statute – As opposed to common law or case-law, statutes are laws or rules from an act of a legislative body and are usually found within a published code or set of rules.

 

Statute of Limitations - A rule or law which requires certain cases or claims to be filed or commenced in court within a specific time period after the occurrence of an event or act after which time, such cases or claims are time barred.

 

Subpoena – A written document requiring a witness to appear at a judicial proceeding, like a deposition or trial on a specific date and at a specific location.

 

Subpoena Duces Tecum- A written document requiring the production of documents or things to the person or body which issued the document. A subpoena duces tecum will ordinarily specify a date and location for compliance.

 

Third Party Action/Impleader – In a case between a plaintiff and one or more Defendants, the procedure by which a party brings another new party into the case alleging that party is liable in whole or in part for damages alleged by one of the parties.

 
Recommendations:
Matt Mussalli.......the BEST attorney I have ever worked with!!! I would recommend to anyone without reservation!

"Matt The Man"
Posted by: guillotkrewe, about 1 month ago.

    * I recommend Matthew Mussalli.
    * I used Matthew 1-6 months ago.
    * Matthew handled my Business matter.
    * I have previously worked with 1-2 lawyers.

Client Review: After being kicked to the curb by some business unsavory partners (without warning and certainly without provocation), I didn't take very many nights of lost sleep to know that I had to fight back. After phoning several reputable attorneys in the N. Houston area, Matt was the only one interested in hearing the case.
Within one hour after meeting, Matt promised that he would take my case, and that I had a good chance if discovery was indeed on our side.
Matt proposed several options going forward, and was unrelenting in his motion for discovery, leaving no wiggle room for my ex-partners.
In a nutshell, he exposed the flaws in defendants argument, and applied maximum pressure in a swift and professional manner.
Matt was serious in his approach, and his attention to legal detail and his precise knowledge of the law had the defendants attorney unable to quash any of our claims. Matt had the upper hand from the first phone call to the settlement.
We finished in 120 days.

Client Review: Over the past twenty years, I have worked with ten attorneys on a variety of matters. I can unequivocally state that Mr. Matthew Mussalli is the best attorney I could ever imagine and he is truly in a league of his own. My case was regarding a construction dispute for several hundred thousand dollars and I was in awe in Mr. Mussalli's abilities from the onset. Prior to hiring Mr. Mussalli, I had interviewed three other prominent attorneys for this case and he was the only one with a definable action plan. His knowledge and attention to detail is truly remarkable.

In an environment where litigation can be emotionally and financially draining, Mr. Mussalli never lost sight of the primary objecive......representing the client in the most compassionte and fair manner with the best representation.

If I, or any acquaintance, EVER need representation again regarding any legal matter, there is only one choice.... It was an honor to have Mr.Mussalli by my side.
 

 

 

 



 
 

Focused on Successful Outcomes

When it comes to protecting your business's reputation, understanding its potential exposure, or safeguarding your family's livelihood, you can trust the Law Office of Matthew J. Mussalli, P.C., a Martindale-Hubbell top rated litigation firm. We will guide and help you make informed decisions in order to maximize the likelihood of achieving a desirable outcome.

Our Four Step Formula

LISTEN
             ANALYZE
                               PLAN
                                          EXECUTE

Many prominent attorneys are known for their mesmerizing oral advocacy and power of persuasion skills. Although we are very proud of our ability to advocate orally and in writing for our clients, it is in the art of listening that we truly excel and get to know our clients - inside and out.  Because we have mastered how to actively listen, we know what information is most critical to our clients' cause, we know what to ask and how to best inquire.  We listen to our clients, judges, opposing counsel, adverse witnesses and of course, our jurors.

First and foremost, we readily recognize that as members of the legal profession, we are in a service industry which requires practical, solution-generating, forward thinking and efficient, time sensitive execution. Building on these basic principles, whether we're in the boardroom or the courtroom, we apply extensive legal and life experience, superior strategic planning, intense and targeted preparation, creative resourcefulness, proven advocacy skills and most importantly, the genuine interest and ability to understand what is most important to you. This, along with the communication skills, vision and judgment allow us to deliver your message most effectively.

LARGE FIRM, COMPLEX CASE EXPERIENCE SMALL FIRM INDIVIDUAL ATTENTION, RESPONSIVENESS & FEES

The Law Office of Matthew J. Mussalli, P.C. has attained Martindale-Hubbell's highest rating for legal ability and ethical standards.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

When considering mediation and arbitration, all participants must be mindful of the one, most important component of the ADR setting: it is all about perspective. Understanding each participant's role, posture and objective from inception is a must in order to meaningfully negotiate or represent a client's interest in arbitration.  The firm routinely represents businesses as well as individuals in mediations and arbitrations-both on an ad hoc basis and in connection with pending litigation. In addition, as part of its transactional and consultation work for businesses and individuals, the firm drafts and negotiates ADR provisions suited to fit specific client needs long before a dispute arises. In the event of conflict regarding the enforceability or scope of arbitration provisions, we also represent parties in litigating these matters.

 Business/Corporate Law

Our extensive experience in litigating business matters enhances our ability to effectively assist clients in a non-litigation context. In this regard, we provide the following:

    * Business entity formation (corporations, limited liability companies, professional associations and general and limited partnerships);
    * Drafting, review and negotiation of employment , non-disclosure, non-compete, arbitration and separation agreements;
    * Drafting, review and negotiation of commercial leases;
    * Drafting, review and negotiation of various contracts and business documents, including asset sale and purchase agreements and related terms and conditions.

 Commercial Litigation

The firm handles claims, disputes and litigation arising from conflicts in commerce or business dealings-whether involving single party business-to-business, multiple business parties or individuals involved in litigation with business entities. In light of our diversified practice areas, we often experience substantial overlap between our commercial litigation practice and other practice areas.

Construction Law

We provide a broad spectrum of legal services in assisting construction managers, contractors, design professionals, inspectors, subcontractors and vendors in all phases of commercial and industrial construction projects as well as claims, disputes and litigation arising from such projects. Typical services include contract drafting and negotiation, negotiation of claims and representation in litigation or arbitration involving issues related to acceleration or compression of work; change orders; construction defects; coordination and synchronization of trades; CPM schedule and delay claims; engineering; liquidated and consequential damages; mitigation of damages; personal injury; project management; and termination or default. Our experience in this area ranges from navigating commonplace lien and payment issues encountered on light commercial jobs to cutting edge off-shore marine construction projects involving multiple disciplines and market pressures. Most importantly, we are keenly in tune with the far reaching impact which construction disputes may have on existing business operations, profits, projections and relationships and focus our initial efforts on attempting to keep projects on track and reconciling disputes before protracted litigation is warranted. Nonetheless, when litigation is the chosen route, whether we are representing a Plaintiff or Defendant, our strategy is built around working toward cost effective, yet favorable solutions that make sense.

 Contracts

As part of the firm’s transactional practice, we routinely draft and negotiate various business and personal agreements, including the following as examples: employment agreements (including non-compete, non-disclosure/confidentiality and mandatory arbitration provisions); severance/separation agreements; contracts for professional services; independent contractor agreements; joint venture agreements; asset purchase and sale agreements; partnership agreements; material supply agreements and purchase order terms and conditions; construction agreements and ante-nuptial (“pre-nup”)agreements.

Guardianship & Guardian Ad Litem

In keeping with our personal commitment as attorneys to serve the needs of those whose voices are incapable of being heard due to infancy, mental or physical incompetence or disease process, we offer assistance in initiating, processing and if necessary, litigating guardianship cases in Montgomery, Fort Bend and Harris Counties, Texas. In addition, as a certified Guardian ad Litem, Matthew Mussalli accepts appointments from judges to assist the judiciary in this capacity.

Serious Personal Injury & Wrongful Death

Over the course of our attorneys’ professional careers, we have represented both corporate clients as well as victims and their families, in defending and civilly prosecuting cases involving some of the worst imaginable catastrophic injuries and deaths including brain damage, quadriplegia and other forms of paralyzation, severe burns from contact with caustic chemicals, explosions and fire, de-gloving injuries, permanent loss of a bodily system and long-term diseases related to industrial exposure, to name just a few. Such cases typically fall under the applicable federal and/or state laws and standards of product liability, professional liability, (medical and otherwise), negligence and gross negligence. In such cases, it has been our experience that the single most important element of effective representation and critical key to success is captured in the following phrase: proactive, time sensitive planning and execution. This includes promptly calling upon and retaining industry leaders and well respected consultants and expert witnesses and clear lines of communication with decision-makers. In the overwhelming majority of these cases in particular, companies finding themselves in a somewhat compromised position of having to defend such a case, their insurance carriers and the victims and/or families all want one thing: to settle the case as quickly as possible for a “reasonable amount” of money commensurate with their respective liability. The problem almost universally encountered is that because these cases are emotionally charged, there is often little or no effective communication between the parties until several months or even years have passed, significant legal fees and expenses have mounted, heels have been deeply dug in and all parties are faced with the prospect of having the case decided by a jury. In order to meaningfully represent our clients, we are keenly focused on anticipating pitfalls in communication and penetrating such communication barriers when they are present. Ultimately, if trial is necessary to resolve a dispute, our clients are confident that their position has been firmly articulated and they have made well reasoned and informed decisions in embarking on this course of action. It is our experience that the manner in which we develop cases gives us a distinct advantage when it's time to begin jury selection.

Professional Liability

Our professional liability practice entails defending accountants; architects, engineers and other design professionals; attorneys; financial advisors and brokers; psychologists; real estate agents and social workers for breach of contract, errors and omissions and/or professional negligence and related claims or causes of action.

In egregious cases of malpractice, particularly in which the victim is a child, disabled or elderly, we also civilly prosecute health care professionals, including long term care or rehabilitation facilities and nursing homes.

Wills, Trusts & Probate

We offer will drafting and preparation of related legal documents pertaining to testamentary disposition of assets and legal interests, including codicils, power of attorney instruments, health care proxies and declarations of guardian in the event of incapacity.

About Our Clients

The firm’s corporate clients range from small, family owned, privately held companies with only one employee to businesses whose shares are publicly traded, have locations on different continents and employ thousands. Our individual clients are equally diverse.

Despite the broad diversity of our clients, the companies and individuals whom we represent share commonality in the following respects: 1) they believe in and expect clear and prompt communication; 2) they understand that as the client, there is no such thing as a “silly question;” 3) they take an active role in facilitating our job in representing them by providing us with necessary information on a timely basis; and 4) they are prudent about spending their money and expect the same of us.

Fees

Typically, our fee structure depends upon the nature of the case or matter, its present status and expected course. Our standard practice involves hourly billing for the firm’s professionals on a monthly basis with a retainer held in our trust account, known as an IOLTA account. IOLTA stands for “Interest on Lawyer’s Trust Accounts.” Interest from IOLTA accounts is pooled to provide civil legal aid to the poor and support improvements to the justice system. At the conclusion of each billing cycle, dependent upon our client’s needs and the agreement we have , we may transfer funds from each client’s retainer balance for work performed for that client in the prior month and request that retainers be replenished or preserve the retainer amount and invoice our client for prompt payment. Matters in litigation or expected to involve litigation require a larger retainer amount than those assignments which are more task oriented or of shorter duration. Unless otherwise agreed, at the conclusion of our representation and after all fees and expenses have been satisfied in accordance with our standard billing practices, any unapplied retainer funds in our trust account are refunded to our client.

Under very specific circumstances, this firm also offers contingent, flat fee and alternative or hybrid billing arrangements.

This firm believes that as attorneys, we must take affirmative steps to assist in providing legal services for those most in need and supports pro bono activities, including assisting with such programs through our local bar associations.

Once we learn more about your specific matter and needs, we can offer more detailed information.

The following glossary of select legal terms is intended for general informational purposes only to those unfamiliar with the legal system. It does not constitute the rendering of legal advice to any prospective or existing client nor does it trigger creation of the attorney-client relationship. In addition, definitions of some terms and their context may vary from case to case and jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Therefore, if you have a specific legal issue, you should consult with and retain a licensed attorney.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) – The term used to describe methods of resolving disputes, claims and lawsuits outside the courtroom in arbitration or mediation.

 

Arbitration – Arbitration is the process of having a hearing in a non-judicial setting (outside of the courtroom) while providing final relief to all parties. Arbitration hearings are typically held in law offices, hotel or business center conference rooms. They are presided over by attorneys and sometimes, retired judges. The rules of evidence do not usually apply, however parties do make objections which are ruled upon by the presiding arbitrator. Typically, arbitrations are not recorded and the grounds to appeal an arbitrator’s award are very limited. In most arbitration, some pre-hearing discovery is permitted, but that is up to the presiding arbitrator and is also typically more limited than discovery permissible in a lawsuit. Various arbitration forums exist but the most common in our practice are the American Arbitration Association (AAA), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), and the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA).

 

Arbitration Clause – A provision in a written contract which states that parties agree to submit disputes to arbitration, usually by waiving their right(s) to a jury trial. There is no “standard” arbitration clause, and the specific terms are negotiable subject to the parties’ willingness to negotiate. As a general proposition, public policy favors enforcement of mutually agreed upon arbitration clauses.

 

Arbitration Panel – The members (usually one or three) who will hear evidence and participate in deciding an arbitrated dispute.

 

Arbitrator – One who decides or participates in ruling over a dispute pending in arbitration.

 

Breach of contract- A failure to perform one’s agreed upon duties or promises owed to another person or company.

 

Burden of Proof – The level of proof necessary to substantiate a claim or defense. For example, in civil cases, Plaintiffs have the burden of proving their claims by a preponderance of the evidence as opposed to criminal cases which require the prosecution to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

 

Case Law/Common Law – A body of laws or rules from published cases as decided by trial and appellate courts.

 

Continuance – In its most common usage, a continuance is a postponement of a hearing or trial from a set or scheduled date to another date.

 

Court Reporter – A transcriptionist who takes an oath as an officer of the court to transcribe all questions, answers and any other oral statements and sometimes, non-verbal events which occur during a specific legal proceeding, like a hearing , trial, or deposition. All depositions must be recorded by stenographers in order to use them at a later date.

 

Cross Claim – A claim asserted typically by one Defendant against another.

 

Deposition – A question and answer session during which attorneys ask questions and the witness or deponent provides answers. Depositions usually take place at attorney’s office or elsewhere, like the courthouse, if the court orders that or the parties cannot agree on a specific location. Attorneys, their clients or party representative and court reporters typically attend depositions. Under certain circumstances, others may be present for depositions. Judges do not attend or participate in depositions, although in rare cases, judges may be contacted during a deposition to make certain rulings regarding the manner in which the deposition is taking place or the responses being given by a witness. Attorneys are required to make certain objections during depositions; however because judges do not typically participate in depositions, any objections made by the attorneys may be ruled upon later in the case and usually, at or before trial.

 

Discovery – When used in the context of legal proceedings, discovery is the process of obtaining information from an adverse party about its claims, theories of recovery, any defenses, the identity of any key documents or witnesses and related information. Discovery tools include Depositions, Interrogatories, Requests for Admission, Requests for Production, Request for Entry Upon Land.

 

Docket Control Order (DCO) – An order from the court notifying parties of the deadlines and scheduling of certain events like adding new parties to the case, or conducting depositions of fact or expert witnesses, which take place during the pendency of a lawsuit. Docket Control Orders will also often set forth the trial date. If both sides agree, there are certain portions of a Docket Control Order which may be modified without obtaining the court’s permission. Otherwise, in order to modify a Docket Control Order, permission from the court is required.

 

Hearsay - The hearsay rule will typically prohibit a jury from hearing out of court statements for the truth of their content in a court proceeding. However, there are many exceptions to this rule. Essentially, this means that a witness is usually not permitted to testify about what he or she heard someone else saying.

 

Incapacity – when used in a legal sense, incapacity refers to a lack of mental state or legal status which renders witness or party incapable of performing a certain act, like entering into a contract or testifying in court proceeding.

 

Interrogatories- A set of written questions seeking written answers to those questions to be sworn to or affirmed under oath. Responses to Interrogatories usually have a specific date by which they must be provided to the opposing party.

 

Jury – A body of citizens of the county in which the dispute is pending who will decide the issues of fact submitted to them based on the instruction given by the court.

 

Jury Charge – Instructions read to the jury by the trial judge read after all of the evidence is complete and before jury deliberations begin. A written form of the jury charge is also usually given to the jury to aid in deliberations and to provide specific questions which require specific written answers. Those answers are put on a verdict form.

 

Jury Deliberations – After all evidence and arguments have been made, the process of a jury discussing and analyzing the evidence heard, the instructions from the court and deciding the issues or questions submitted.

 

Jury Selection – The process of selecting suitable jurors from a pool of many citizens who appear for jury duty. Voir Dire is the commonly used French term synonymous with jury selection.

 

Jury Trial – A courtroom hearing during which each party presents its evidence and arguments to the jury before a presiding judge. Usually, a jury trial takes place after all fact and expert discovery has been completed; although in some instances, the court may order or the parties may agree to have certain issues decided by a jury before the rest of discovery has been completed.

 

Objection – A procedure by which a party takes exception to the admission of a certain piece of evidence or other matter.

 

Statute – As opposed to common law or case-law, statutes are laws or rules from an act of a legislative body and are usually found within a published code or set of rules.

 

Statute of Limitations - A rule or law which requires certain cases or claims to be filed or commenced in court within a specific time period after the occurrence of an event or act after which time, such cases or claims are time barred.

 

Subpoena – A written document requiring a witness to appear at a judicial proceeding, like a deposition or trial on a specific date and at a specific location.

 

Subpoena Duces Tecum- A written document requiring the production of documents or things to the person or body which issued the document. A subpoena duces tecum will ordinarily specify a date and location for compliance.

 

Third Party Action/Impleader – In a case between a plaintiff and one or more Defendants, the procedure by which a party brings another new party into the case alleging that party is liable in whole or in part for damages alleged by one of the parties.

 
Recommendations:
Matt Mussalli.......the BEST attorney I have ever worked with!!! I would recommend to anyone without reservation!

"Matt The Man"
Posted by: guillotkrewe, about 1 month ago.

    * I recommend Matthew Mussalli.
    * I used Matthew 1-6 months ago.
    * Matthew handled my Business matter.
    * I have previously worked with 1-2 lawyers.

Client Review: After being kicked to the curb by some business unsavory partners (without warning and certainly without provocation), I didn't take very many nights of lost sleep to know that I had to fight back. After phoning several reputable attorneys in the N. Houston area, Matt was the only one interested in hearing the case.
Within one hour after meeting, Matt promised that he would take my case, and that I had a good chance if discovery was indeed on our side.
Matt proposed several options going forward, and was unrelenting in his motion for discovery, leaving no wiggle room for my ex-partners.
In a nutshell, he exposed the flaws in defendants argument, and applied maximum pressure in a swift and professional manner.
Matt was serious in his approach, and his attention to legal detail and his precise knowledge of the law had the defendants attorney unable to quash any of our claims. Matt had the upper hand from the first phone call to the settlement.
We finished in 120 days.

Client Review: Over the past twenty years, I have worked with ten attorneys on a variety of matters. I can unequivocally state that Mr. Matthew Mussalli is the best attorney I could ever imagine and he is truly in a league of his own. My case was regarding a construction dispute for several hundred thousand dollars and I was in awe in Mr. Mussalli's abilities from the onset. Prior to hiring Mr. Mussalli, I had interviewed three other prominent attorneys for this case and he was the only one with a definable action plan. His knowledge and attention to detail is truly remarkable.

In an environment where litigation can be emotionally and financially draining, Mr. Mussalli never lost sight of the primary objecive......representing the client in the most compassionte and fair manner with the best representation.

If I, or any acquaintance, EVER need representation again regarding any legal matter, there is only one choice.... It was an honor to have Mr.Mussalli by my side.
 

 

 

 



 
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