Chaz D. Klaes

Office Managing Partner, Houston

Chaz Klaes is a Partner in Weinberg Wheeler Hudgins Gunn & Dial's Houston office.

Chaz has a diverse practice involving the representation of domestic and international insurers in first-party property matters and third-party general liability. Chaz’s practice in this regard is national in scope and has involved cases across the nation.

Chaz’s third-party practice encompasses a wide range of matters including oil well/rig injuries, premises incidents including alleged defects and negligent security/shooting issues, and environmental hazards/losses.  Chaz also handles trucking accidents with an emphasis on cross-border trucking companies. 

Chaz’s first-party practice involves losses throughout the United States with respect to complex physical damage as well as product recall issues.

Chaz’s practice also includes handling a wide variety of matters for High Net Worth Personal Lines Carriers.  These claims often involve significant policies with multiple layers of coverage.  Chaz has counseled these carriers on defense, subrogation, and coverage matters.

Education

Washington and Lee University, B.A., 2009

Washington and Lee University, J.D., 2012

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Texas
  • US District Court for Southern District of Texas
  • US District Court for Northern District of Texas
  • US District Court for Eastern District of Texas
  • Western District of Texas

Representative Experience

Routon v. EOG and Renegade Well Services, Cause No. 2015-34043, in the 295th District Court of Harris County Texas.  Successfully defended, as second chair, a lease operator in a lawsuit involving an alleged traumatic brain injury as the result of the negligent removal of an ice plug at a gas processing facility.  Following a one-month trial, the jury determined an employee of our client was the borrowed servant/employee of a co-defendant and our insured was found not negligent. 

Saiz v Shamblin, Cause No. 49,246, in the 118th District Court of Howard County, Texas.  Successfully defended, as second chair, a company man for a well operator.  The decedent derrickman was approximately 136 feet in the air when the crown of the rig collapsed, and the decedent fell to his death.  Plaintiff claimed the company man was in control of the work and should have stopped the work despite the fact he was only at the well site for less than five minutes.  Plaintiff asked for 10,000,000 in damages.  Jury found the company man 5% at fault and owed less than $100,000 in damages following verdict. 

In re Berry GP, Court of Appeals No. 09-16-00292-CV, successfully obtained a writ of mandamus, as second chair, from the 9th Court of Appeals ordering a transfer from Jefferson County to Howard County.  Plaintiff was injured while working in a refinery located in Howard County, Texas.  All of the defendants maintained a principle place of business in Howard County or Nueces County.  Plaintiff filed suit in Jefferson County because his employer (a non-party) was located in Jefferson County.  The trial court denied the motion to transfer venue.  Following transfer and completion of discovery, the Howard County District Court granted summary judgment in favor of our defendant. 

Griffiths v. EPT et al, Cause No. 2014-18161, in the 270th District Court of Harris County, Texas.  Successfully defended, as first chair, a company in a lawsuit whereby plaintiff complained he was defrauded by two of the founders of the company that later became my insured.  Plaintiff sought more than fifty million in damages.  Following a week-long trial, the jury awarded approximately 3.6 million in damages against all the defendants combined. 

Katy Plumbing v. Stephen Blanchard, Cause No. 2013-66891, in the 164th District Court of Harris County, Texas.  Successfully prosecuted, as first chair, a breach of contract claim on behalf of a local plumbing company against a homeowner who refused to pay for the services provided.  The jury found in favor of the plumbing company and awarded damages. 

Please note this is a representative list of matters.  A full trial CV can be provided upon request.

Awards & Recognitions

Texas Super Lawyers®, Super Lawyer List, 2024

Texas Super Lawyers®, Rising Stars List, 2016-2022

Professional & Community Activities

  • Washington and Lee University, Alumni Board Member
  • Washington and Lee University, Alumni Board-Houston Chapter (former past president)
  • Vita-Living, Inc., Board of Directors, Member
  • Community Volunteer with various other local organizations.