Professor Dustin Benham
|Assistant Dean for Strategic Initiatives
Assistant Professor of Legal Practice, 2010
(806) 742-3990 x271
Professor Benham's teaching and research focus on legal practice and civil procedure, with an emphasis on the integrity of the litigation process and civil judgments. Before joining the faculty at Texas Tech University School of Law, Professor Benham served as a visiting professor at Baylor Law School, teaching appellate advocacy and civil procedure courses.
In addition to his teaching experience, Professor Benham has an array of litigation and appellate experience. Professor Benham began his career in the appellate section of Carrington Coleman Sloman & Blumenthal, LLP, in Dallas, Texas. While at Carrington Coleman, Professor Benham was part of appellate teams representing both individuals and multi-national corporations in high-stakes matters. He also worked on several notable criminal sentencing appeals. Of particular note, Professor Benham was second-chair and briefing attorney for the petitioner in Spears v. United States, 555 U.S. 261 (2009). In Spears, Professor Benham wrote a substantial portion of a winning petition involving criminal sentencing issues before the United States Supreme Court.
After beginning his practice in the appellate arena, Professor Benham practiced at an automotive products liability boutique in Dallas, Texas. During this time, he represented clients who had been catastrophically injured by defective automobiles in trial courts around the country.
In recent years, Professor Benham has served as lead appellate counsel, representing clients before state appellate courts while his clients were on appeal or involved in original proceedings. He successfully defended a petition for review before the Texas Supreme Court involving a hot-button issue after prevailing in the Dallas Court of Appeals. Irving Holdings, Inc. v. Brown, 274 S.W.3d 926 (Tex. App. – Dallas 2009, pet. denied).
Professor Benham was honored as a Texas Super Lawyer, Rising Star in 2009.
Professor Benham is licensed to practice in Texas and is also admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas. Additionally, he is admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Beyond Congress's Reach: Constitutional Aspects of Inherent Power, 43 Seton Hall L. Rev. ___ (forthcoming).
Twombly and Iqbal Should (Finally!) Put the Distinction Between Intrinsic and Extrinsic Fraud Out of Its Misery, 64 SMU L. Rev. 649 (2011).
The State Bar of Texas Provides New Guidance to Attorneys Regarding the Proper Use of Social Media and Blogs, 52 The Advoc. 13 (Fall 2010).
Personal Torts Survey, 61 SMU L. Rev. 1013 (2008) (co-author).
How Not to Mess Up Your Case on Appeal, State Bar of Texas Advanced Personal Injury Law Course (2008) (J. Levinger, co-author).
Perfecting the Appeal – State and Federal, State Bar of Texas Advanced Appellate Course (2007) (contributing author).
Forum Selection Clauses in Texas, Dallas Bar Association (2007) (D. Coale and L. Barton, co-authors).
Metajustification: The Problem of Infinite Regress, 46 Dialogue 81 (2004) (award for best article of volume).
Appellate Decisions (Selected)
Spears v. United States, 555 U.S. 261 (2009) (second chair and briefing attorney).
Irving Holdings, Inc. v. Brown, 274 S.W.3d 926 (Tex. App. -- Dallas 2009, pet. denied) (lead appellate counsel in both the Dallas Court of Appeals and the Texas Supreme Court).
In re Adams, 2009 WL 4601163 (Tex. App. -- Dallas 2009, orig. proceeding) (not designated for publication) (lead appellate counsel).
Flint Hills Resources LP v. Jag Energy, Inc., 559 F.3d 373 (5th Cir. 2009) (second chair).
Amicus Briefs (Selected)
Brief for Federal Public and Community Defenders Amicus Curiae Supporting Petitioner, Kimbrough v. United States, 552 U.S. 85 (2007) (M. O'Hear (Marquette) and M. Osler (St. Thomas (Minneapolis)), co-authors).