Steven O. Grubbs

Steven O. Grubbs


Mr. Grubbs serves as the Firm’s Managing Director. He is a member of the Pappas Grubbs Price PC insurance litigation, construction litigation, transportation litigation, hospitality law, as well as labor and employment law sections in which he is Board Certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization – Labor and Employment Law (2005). He has been a litigator for over twenty-five years and has considerable first-chair trial experience in the State and Federal Courts and before the Texas Courts of Appeals and the Texas Supreme Court. He cut his teeth defending doctors and nurses from allegations of medical malpractice, including trials involving obstetric and orthopedic negligence while in his second year of practice.

Over the years, Mr. Grubbs has expanded his practice to a variety of disciplines including construction fatalities, trucking, premises liability, construction defects, and commercial matters. Few lawyers in the state, or perhaps the country, have the experience with OSHA litigation and related workplace fatality litigation as Mr. Grubbs. He has personally managed over 500 OSHA investigations for nearly every industry and occupation, for the employer. Litigation experience matters. To date, Mr. Grubbs has tried over 40 jury, non-jury and administrative cases to verdicts with impressive results.

Mr. Grubbs has also handled hundreds of third-party claims and first-party insurance bad faith claims for Underwriters since 2005. He is intimately familiar with non-standard policy wordings within the Lloyds market and surplus markets and regularly litigated claims for them and many of the larger admitted legacy carriers.

He frequently acts as monitoring counsel for excess insurers where he guides primary counsel and makes recommendations to the carriers on continued exposure analysis and trial strategy. Quite frankly, clients choose Mr. Grubbs for these high-value exposures because of his extensive trial record. Current client exposures include Dram Shop fatalities, construction defects, and trucking exposures. In some instances, Mr. Grubbs acts as the tower manager for the entire tower of excess with limits aggregating up to $1B.

Community Activities

  • Appointed by the Mayor and City Council for the City of Bellaire, Texas to serve as a member of the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board; elected as its Vice President (2005-­2011).
  • FAA licensed Private Pilot

Lectures Presented

  • The Basey Case — Get Going Before it Gets Tough — Presented to Texas Mutual Insurance Company (2000).
  • OSHA’s New Multi­Employer Worksite Directive — Presented to Texas Mutual Insurance Company (2001).
  • FLSA Compliance for Small Business — Captive lecture to small surgery center HR department (2004).
  • Selected Topics in Ethics for the Texas Insurance Adjuster — Presented to various insurance carriers and their TPA’s throughout the country (2006).
  • OSHA Inspections: Preparations and Actions for Nonsubscribing Employers — presented to the Texas Association of Responsible Nonsubscribing Employers (TXANS) at their Annual Conference in Austin, Texas (2006).
  • Employment Law Basics — Presented to the Houston Claims Association (2006).
  • The Top 5 Liability Issues Facing the Texas Funeral Director Today — Presented to the Texas Funeral Director’s Association (Summer 2006).
  • Being Cute can Get Ugly: Home Care and the FLSA — Presented to the Texas Association for Home Care (2007).
  • Arbitration for the Texas Nonsubscriber (Panelist) — Presented to the Texas Association of Responsible Nonsubscribing Employers (TXANS) at their Annual Conference in Austin, Texas (2007).
  • General Contractor/Subcontractor Liability Under Redlinger and its Progeny — Presented at the Blakeman and Associates Annual Employment Law Conference (2008).
  • Trucking Litigation and DOT Regs for the Carrier — Presented at the 2008 Risk Management Seminar for the Insurance Network of Texas (2008).

Contact Steven O. Grubbs

Areas of Practice

Publications and Seminars

  • OSHA in Healthcare — What to Do if OSHA Knocks at Your Door, American Health Lawyers Association — Labor and Employment Practice Section (Fall 2005, 4, Issue 3).
  • Co-authored, What to Expect and What to Do When OSHA Comes Knocking, in Enterprise Risk Management Handbook for Healthcare Entities 12 (1st ed. 2009).
  • Co-authored, Understanding and Managing OSHA from Inspection to Citation to Litigation, in Enterprise Risk Management Handbook for Healthcare Entities 12 (2nd ed. 2012).

Insurance Litigation

  • Manage large dockets of first party property lawsuits arising out of large scale CAT events such as hurricanes, hail storms and other adverse weather phenomenon.
  • Defend several auto carriers from UM/UIM first party exposure. Represent a wide variety of industries from third party claims alleging premises liability, negligence, gross negligence, products liability, slips and falls, auto/transportation liability, dram shop, assault/battery, DTPA, and intentional tort claims. Regularly handles first party property and third party casualty, products liability, construction defect, trucking/cargo, premises liability and general liability claims for Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s of London. Familiar with the London market and the underwriting/brokerage process at Lloyd’s.

Transportation Law

  • Regularly defend large regional carrier from liability and cargo claims involving food products.
  • Represent a large variety of trucking insurers and their insureds from third party claims involving transportation liability.
  • Manage emergency response and on­-scene investigations following fatality, hazmat, and multiple injury transportation related accidents.

Labor/Employment Litigation

  • Manage large litigation docket of employers’ liability for gross negligence lawsuits concerning workplace safety/health and employee fatality claims arising under Labor Code, Sec. 408.001(b) in state and federal courts.
  • Defended more than 500 industrial employers from OSHA–DOL inspections and litigation from the initial inspection through formal hearings and appeals to the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
  • Regularly defend non-subscribing Texas corporations from claims alleging injuries and fatalities to employees.
  • Successfully defended employers from EEOC and Texas Workforce Commission Civil Rights Division claims for alleged violations of Title VII including race/age/gender discrimination, wrongful termination and retaliation claims and defended employers from subsequent civil litigation alleging same.
  • Litigated to successful conclusions several common law claims asserted against employers including theft of trade secrets, breach of employment agreement, wrongful termination, confidentiality agreement breaches, claimed non compete agreement violations and retaliation for filing for workers’ compensation claims.

Notable Decisions

  • In re Estate of Howard –— S.W.3d — 2018 WL 650455 (Tex. App. – Houston [14th Dist.] Feb. 1, 2018, no pet. h.) The Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal of all claims in a workplace fatality because the findings of the workers compensation commission were deemed conclusive in the Texas District Court case trying to relitigate the same issue.
  • Carruth v. SCI Texas Funeral Services Inc. 221 S.W.3d 134 (Tex. App. — Houston [1st Dist.] 2006, reh’g overruled, July 20, 2006). (Upholding summary judgment for funeral home arising from a lawsuit brought by an ex-­husband of a decedent for a funeral home’s failure to follow his burial instructions over the decedent’s daughter.)
  • Creel v. Martinez 176 S.W.3d 516 (Tex. App. — Houston [1st Dist.] 2004, writ denied) (Following trial to jury, obtained judgment for client on appeal.)


  • South Texas College of Law (J.D., 1996)
  • University of Texas at Austin (B.B.A., 1992)

Legal Memberships

  • State Bar of Texas
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA)
  • Houston Bar Association
  • American Health Lawyers Association
  • Texas Surplus Lines Association
  • Trucking Industry Defense Association (TIDA)
  • Themis Advocates Group

Honors and Awards

  • Board Certified in Labor and Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization
  • Elected member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA)
  • Recipient American Jurisprudence Awards – 1995, 1996
  • Outstanding Advocate Awards – 1995, 1996
  • Intramural Mock Trial Champion
  • Interscholastic Mock Trial Team


  • State Bar of Texas
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit