Record Toyota Verdict Earns National Honors for Frank L. Branson Trial Team

National Trial Lawyers group names Branson one of 50 Most Influential Lawyers

DALLAS – The Law Offices of Frank L. Branson trial team that secured a record $242 million verdict against Toyota for defective seatbacks has been named Product Defect Litigation Trial Team of the Year by the National Trial Lawyers and the National Law Journal. The team includes firm founder Frank L. Branson, attorneys Debbie Dudley Branson and Eric Stahl, along with Chip Brooker of Brooker Law PLLC.

The National Trial Lawyers also named Mr. Branson to the group’s list of 50 Most Influential Lawyers in the U.S. based on his track record of standout verdicts and settlements and his reputation for upholding the legal profession’s highest standards. The National Trial Lawyers is an invitation-only organization of the premier trial attorneys across the country.

In selecting the team for the top honors, the National Trial Lawyers cited the August 2018 verdict in Dallas in which jurors found Toyota liable for defective seatbacks in the Lexus ES300. Jurors awarded a combined $242 million to a family whose two young children suffered serious head injuries when the front seats collapsed backward in a collision, injuring the children who were in car seats in the backseat.

“We had extremely deserving clients, including two terribly brain-damaged children.  We also had a good case of liability, a judge that was fair, and a jury that listened,” said Mr. Branson. “As lead counsel, I am very proud of the trial team and believe this award is well-deserved by each member of the team.”

The Branson trial team was honored at a Jan. 21 awards ceremony during the National Trial Lawyers summit in South Beach, Florida.

The case is Benjamin Thomas Reavis et al. v Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc. et al., Cause No. DC-16-15296 in the 134th Judicial District in Dallas County.

This is just the latest honor for Mr. Branson, who was recognized in Texas Lawbook’s inaugural “Lions of the Bar” series and has been named among the Top 10 lawyers in the state by Texas Super Lawyers. The National Law Journal has included him among the nation’s 50 Elite Trial Lawyers for Plaintiffs, and he is one of the few attorneys to be honored by TheBest Lawyers in America guide every year since its 1987 debut.

The Law Offices of Frank L. Branson maintains a reputation for courtroom excellence based on significant verdicts and settlements for clients in high-stakes litigation and business disputes. The firm’s record verdicts and recoveries stem from cases involving trucking and transportation injuries, dangerous products, construction accidents, commercial plane crashes, explosions and burns caused by gas and electric power utilities, medical negligence, workplace catastrophes and business disputes. To learn more, visit

Media Contact:
Robert Tharp


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