Chrysta Castaneda

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Energy & Natural Resources Attorney in Dallas, TX

The Castaneda Firm
 | 404 W Davis St, Dallas, TX 75208
Phone: 214-282-8579
Fax: 214-602-9187
Selected To Super Lawyers: 2012, 2018 - 2021
Licensed Since: 1991
Practice Areas:
  • Energy & Natural Resources (50%),
  • Business Litigation (30%),
  • Personal Injury - Products: Defense (20%)
    Attorney Profile

    Chrysta Castañeda is a lead trial lawyer for high stakes litigation in the energy industry and beyond.  As the founding partner of The Castañeda Firm in Dallas, Texas, Ms. Castañeda focuses on oil and gas litigation in the upstream sector, as well as commercial litigation and products liability disputes involving technical evidence. She frequently represents operators, working interest owners, mineral owners and investors on contract and operational questions. She also has served as national coordinating counsel for products manufacturers in products liability and toxic tort claims. 

    Ms. Castañeda was recognized for her work as lead counsel for the plaintiff in Mesa Petroleum Partners v. Baytech et al. by The National Law Journal, receiving accolades for the 12th largest verdict in the nation and the 5th largest in Texas in 2016. She was also named one of The National Law Journal’s 2018 Elite Trial Lawyers.

    Ms. Castañeda has over 25 years of experience gained as a partner and associate in some of the largest law firms in the nation, and handles major matters for clients of all sizes. She is also listed on the Energy Panel of the American Arbitration Association as a certified neutral arbitrator.

    After receiving a bachelor of science degree in industrial engineering from Kansas State University, Ms. Castañeda earned her law degree from Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law, where she graduated cum laude and as a member of the Order of the Coif. She served as the special edition editor of the Southwestern Law Journal. She has been admitted to practice law in Texas since 1991 and is also licensed before all federal courts in Texas, as well as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.

    Ms. Castañeda is a member of various professional organizations and has served in a variety of roles throughout her career. She belongs to the Dallas Bar Foundation and was a sustaining member of the Products Liability Advisory Council from 2003 to 2010. She is also active in the Dallas Bar Association, serving as the chair of the media relations committee. She currently serves on the Texas Women’s Foundation Board of Directors and on the Advisory Board of Kansas State University's School of Engineering.

    Practice Areas
    • 50%Energy & Natural Resources
    • 30%Business Litigation
    • 20%Personal Injury - Products: Defense
    Focus Areas

    Energy Law, Natural Resources Law, Trade Secret, Non-Compete Agreements, Medical Devices, Products Liability


    Selected to Super Lawyers for 5 yearsbottom-image

    Super Lawyers: 2012, 2018 - 2021

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    Articles about Chrysta Castaneda appearing in Super Lawyers

    About Chrysta Castaneda

    Admitted: 1991, Texas

    Professional Webpage:


    • Best Lawyers in America, 2020
    • D Magazine, Best Lawyers in Dallas, Litigation, 2019
    • Elite Trial Lawyers, National Law Journal, 2018
    • Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2018
    • D Magazine, Best Lawyers in Dallas, Litigation, 2018
    • 5th largest verdict in Texas, Top Texas Verdicts & Settlements of 2016 , Texas Lawyer, 2017
    • 12th highest jury verdict for the U.S. in 2016, National Law Journal Top Verdicts, 2017
    • Women in Energy Award for outstanding women lawyers representing the energy industry, Texas Lawyer, 2016
    • Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2012

    Bar/Professional Activity:

    • Products Liability Advisory Council, Sustaining Member 2003-2010
    • All Texas federal courts and the Fifth Circuit
    • Chair, Dallas Bar Association Media Relations Committee, 2017
    • Texas Bar, 1991
    • Dallas Bar Association – Judiciary, Bench Bar, Media Relations and Courthouse Committees, Member

    Pro bono/Community Service:

    • Texas Bar Foundation, 2020
    • Dallas Bar Foundation, Member  

    Scholarly Lectures/Writings:


    • ConocoPhillips Co. v. Ramirez, — S.W.3d —, 2006 WL 1848584 (Tex. App. — San Antonio, no pet.)
    • County of Dallas v. Sempe, 151 S.W.3d 291  (Tex. App. — Dallas 2004, pet. dism’d)
    • In re Harman Intern. Industries, Inc.,S.W.3d—, 2000 WL 1060516 (Tex. App. —- San Antonio 2000, orig. proceeding)
    • Phillips Petroleum Co. v. Yarbrough, — S.W.3d —,  2012 WL 195608 (Tex. App. — Houston [14th Dist.] 2012), reversed, 405 S.W.3d 70 (Tex. 2013).
    • Kalodner v. Michaels Stores, Inc., 172 F.R.D. 200 (N.D. Tex. 1997)
    • Pulmosan Safety Equipment Corp. v. Terry— S.W.3d —, 2010 WL 2025781 (Tex. App. — Houston [1st Dist.] 2010, no pet.)
    • Lead counsel for plaintiff in $135 million judgment received in oil and gas case, Mesa v. Baytech et al., Reeves County, Texas, 2017
    • Pulmosan Safety Equipment Corp v. Lamb, 273 S.W.3d 829 (Tex. App. — Houston [14th] 2008, no pet.)
    • Dallas County v. Gonzales, 183 S.W.3d 94  (Tex. App. — Dallas 2006, pet. denied)
    • Money Masters, Inc. v. TRW, Inc., — S.W.3d — , 2003 WL 152770 (Tex. App. — Dallas 2003, no pet.) (trial counsel)
    • Aviall, Inc. v. Ryder System Inc., 110 F.3d 892  (2d Cir. 1997)
    • Baker v. Energy Transfer Co., — S.W.3d —, 2011 WL 1797602  (Tex. App.—Waco  2011, pet. denied)
    • Chrysta Osborn, Comment, Constitutional Scrutiny and Speech:  Eroding the Bedrock Principles of the First Amendment, 44 S.W. L.J. 1013 (1990)
    • Moore v. Pulmosan Safety Equipment Corp.278 S.W.3d 27 (Tex. App. — Houston [14th Dist.] 2008, no pet.)
    • Needleman v. John Hancock Life Ins. Co., — F. Supp.2d —, 2006 WL 842370 (N.D. Tex. 2006)
    • McManus v. Fleetwood Enterprises, Inc., 320 F.3d 545 (5th Cir. 2003) (trial counsel for General Motors)
    • In re Air Bag Products Liability Litigation, 7 F.Supp.2d 792  (E.D. La. 1998)
    • Doe v. Episcopal School of Dallas, — F. Supp.3d —, 2011 WL 395683 (N.D. Tex. 2011)
    • Richie v. Am. Council on Gift Annuities, Inc., 943 F.Supp. 685 (N.D. Tex. 1996), appeal dismissed sub nom. Ozee v. Am. Council on Gift Annuities, Inc., 110 F.3d 1082 (5th Cir.), reh’g denied, 116 F.3d 1479 (5th Cir. 1997), cert. granted, judgment vacated sub nom Am. Bible Soc. v. Richie, 522 U.S. 1011 (1997); on remand sub nom. Ozee v. Am. Council on Gift Annuities, Inc.143 F.3d 937 (5th Cir. 1998), cert. denied, 526 U.S. 1064
    • Ferguson v. John Hancock Life Ins. Co., — F. Supp.2d —, 2008 WL 8084951 (S.D. Tex. 2008)

    Representative Clients:

    • Represented oil and gas services company in theft of trade secrets/employee raiding case; obtained temporary injunction and defeated Anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss

    • Represented royalty owner syndicate in claims for underpayment of royalty and commingling of production

    • Represented shareholders of closely held oil and gas operating company in dispute over assets and control

    • Represented lessees regarding breach of farmout agreement that caused leases to lapse; worked with valuation experts to develop damages model based on value of prospective resources in Eagle Ford

    • Acted as interim General Counsel for Permian operating company in 2016.
    • Lead counsel for investor and his company in trial arising from breach of Area of Mutual Interest agreement and Joint Operating Agreement covering the Delaware Basin. Judgment entered in 2017 for $135 million.
    • Represented working interest owner in dispute arising from failure to honor tag-along rights arising from a sale in the Permian Basin.  

    Educational Background:

    • Harvard College, Applied Math major, 1981-1983
    • Kansas State University, B.S. Industrial Engineering, 1985

    Industry Groups

    • Business Litigation
    • Energy
    • Oil & Gas
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    Office Location for Chrysta Castaneda

    404 W Davis St
    Dallas, TX 75208

    Phone: 214-282-8579

    Fax: 214-602-9187

    Chrysta Castaneda:

    Last Updated: 3/2/2021

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