Image: Manuel Berrelez

Manuel Berrelez

Partner, Litigation Department


Phone: 1(972) 936-7478
Fax: 1(972) 936-7378


Manuel Berrelez is a partner in the Complex Litigation and Arbitration practice and is based in the firm’s Dallas office. He is a trial and regulatory enforcement lawyer who represents businesses and individuals in a wide range of litigation, enforcement, and investigation matters. His practice focuses on complex business disputes and litigation in both state and federal courts, regulatory matters, government investigations, and bankruptcy-related litigation. In addition, Manuel leads teams that assist clients with internal investigations and advises on various compliance matters. 

Manuel has particular experience defending financial institutions, private equity firms, corporations, and their directors and officers who are under investigation or are facing threatened or actual litigation from government authorities, regulators, shareholders, or competitors. He frequently advises and defends current and former directors and officers facing regulatory enforcement actions, including matters alleging fiduciary duty breaches, unsafe and unsound practices, and violations of other federal and state laws.

Manuel handles all aspects of investigations by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), and the Texas Department of Banking, among other regulatory agencies. He has also litigated against each of the aforementioned agencies, including matters that involved trying enforcement actions to an Administrative Law Judge and defending or contesting recommended decisions before final agency decision makers and appellate courts. He has also represented and filed amici briefs in the Supreme Court on behalf of various banking trade organizations in cases involving constitutional matters of import to the banking industry.

His notable victories include his successful defense of a bank CEO and board chairman sued by the federal government in a regulatory matter. Manuel represented the client in every phase of the matter, from early investigations to an administrative trial to an appeal before the OCC, and he led a team that defeated all claims against the client.

Prior to joining Paul Hastings, Manuel completed a year-long clerkship with the Honorable Raymond C. Fisher, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, an experience that helped him develop a deep understanding of how judges respond to particular arguments.

In 2018, Manuel was named a top Latino lawyer by Latino Leaders Magazine, an honor awarded to 62 lawyers nationwide. In 2015, he was named one of 20 extraordinary minority lawyers in Texas. Manuel was also named a Texas Rising Star from 2013 to 2017 and a Best Lawyer in Dallas each year since 2020.

Manuel serves on numerous civic Boards focused on the arts, education, and legal services. He also supervises an active docket of pro bono matters involving immigration and criminal justice issues.


  • The Best Lawyers in America© (BL Rankings, LLC), Commercial Litigation (Dallas), 2023
  • D Magazine, “The Best Lawyers in Dallas,” 2020−2024
  • Latino Leaders Magazine, Top Latino Lawyer, 2018 and 2021
  • Selected to the Texas Rising Stars list, Super Lawyers (Thomson Reuters), 2013−2017
  • Selected to the Texas Super Lawyers list, Super Lawyers (Thomson Reuters), 2022-2024
  • Selected as the feature cover story in Super Lawyers (Thomson Reuters) for 2017 Texas Rising Stars
  • Recognized to the Extraordinary Minorities in Texas list, Texas Lawyer, 2015


  • Yale Law School, J.D., 2005
  • Yale College, B.A., History cum laude, 2000 (John Addison Porter Prize in American History, Howard R. Lamar Writing Prize for best senior thesis in American Southwest History)


Regulatory Matters

  • (Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, U.S. Treasury Dept.) — First-chair trial attorney securing a complete dismissal of charges in a federal enforcement action brought by the OCC against the founder and CEO of a Dallas-based bank alleging claims of unsafe and unsound banking practices, breach of fiduciary duty, and violations of federal banking regulations
  • (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, U.S. Treasury Dept.) — First-chair trial attorney defending former President and CEO of Texas-based federally chartered bank in a decade-long enforcement action seeking to ban him from banking and impose a six-figure penalty, including a two-week trial alleging breach of fiduciary duties and unsafe and unsound banking practices (post-trial matters ongoing)
  • (5th Circuit); (N.D. Tex.); Lead lawyer representing a bank board member in an injunctive lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of an administrative enforcement proceeding; currently defending the client on appeal in the Fifth Circuit after successfully obtaining a preliminary injunction order from the District Court (appeal pending)
  • (U.S. Supreme Court): Lead lawyer for an amicus brief on behalf of several banking trade organizations in a pending Supreme Court case concerning the Seventh Amendment and the “public rights” doctrine as it pertains to administrative enforcement actions
  • (Tex. Dept. of Banking) —Defended the Board chairman of a Texas-based federally chartered bank in removal proceedings alleging breach of fiduciary duty and unsafe and unsound banking practices
  • (Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, U.S. Dept. of Treasury) — Defended former President and CEO of a south Texas bank in an OCC regulatory investigation; after responding to numerous subpoenas and defending the client’s deposition, the OCC decided not to initiate an enforcement action or assess a civil money penalty
  • (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, U.S. Dept. of Treasury) — Lead lawyer representing a North Texas bank in various regulatory and compliance matters

Business & Commercial Disputes

  • (E.D. Tex.) — Defended the Board chairman of Texas-based bank in lawsuit alleging fraud and breach of fiduciary duty relating to commercial real estate loans
  • (Tex. Dist. – Dallas Cnty.) — Represented a Texas-chartered bank in litigation against a commercial borrower and its guarantor for the recovery of more than $35 million, including successfully obtaining a court-appointed receiver to market and sell the collateral (stock in a bank holding company)
  • (Tex. Dist. – Dallas Cnty.) — Represented a privately held group of companies in connection with an internal investigation and prosecuted a civil lawsuit seeking recovery of $47 million in an embezzlement fraud
  • (Tex. Dist. – Dallas Cnty.) — Represented a global real estate services firm in the successful resolution of fraud and negligence claims brought in connection with the acquisition and promotion of a development project in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • (C.D. Cal.) — Defended a technology company and its directors and officers in litigation with an investor alleging securities, fraud, and contract claims
  • (Tex. Dist. – Travis Cnty.) — Defended a venture company and its founder in litigation with an investment banker alleging fraud and contract claims
  • (Tex. Dist. − Travis Cnty.) — Defended a private equity firm and its subsidiaries in litigation with a real estate developer in litigation involving fraud and contract claims
  • (Tex. Dist. − Hidalgo Cnty.) — Defended the former bank directors and officers of a south Texas bank in securities litigation brought by bank shareholders under the Texas Securities Act
  • (S.D. Tex.) — Defended two investment banking and financial advisory firms in a federal securities lawsuit
  • (Tex. Dept. of Banking) — Successfully defended a Texas-based federally-chartered bank in a regulatory investigation
  • (N.D. Tex.) — Obtained a partial defense verdict for a major software company after a two-week jury trial in a trade-secret misappropriation case
  • (N.D. Tex.) — Represented one of the country’s largest bulk transportation companies in a breach of contract case against one of its distributors; the case resolved favorably for our client after successfully moving to strike the plaintiff’s expert
  • (W.D. Wa.) — Represented one of the nation’s largest property and casualty insurers in a breach of contract and indemnification action against various health services companies relating to medical-charge databases used to process medical bills
  • (Tex. Dist. − Dallas Cnty.) — Secured a favorable settlement for a national restaurant joint venture in litigation involving claims of fraud and breach of fiduciary duty
  • (Tex. Dist. − Hidalgo Cnty.); (Fl. Dist. − Escambia Cnty.) — Lead lawyer defending a national life insurance company in cases brought in Texas and Florida alleging claims of fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and conspiracy with regard to the sale of premium- financed life insurance
  • (Tex. Dist. − Dallas Cnty.) — Lead lawyer for Texas’ largest electric transmission and distribution utility, securing a dismissal of a consumer class action relating to the implementation of advanced meters
  • (N.J. Sup. Ct. − Sussex Cnty.) — Represented one of the nation’s largest video retailers in a consumer class action that resulted in a favorable settlement for the client


  • Law Clerk to the Honorable Raymond C. Fisher, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (2005–2006)
  • Board Member: AVANCE, Inc. (2019–present); Dallas Hispanic Law Foundation (2015–present); The Dallas Winds (2014– present); Educate Dallas (2013–2021); National Association for Law Placement Foundation (2022-2024); Texas Defender Service (2021–present); Texas General Counsel Forum (2017– present)
  • Member: American Bar Association; Dallas Bar Association; Dallas Hispanic Bar Association; Hispanic National Bar Association; Texas Bar Foundation; Texas Supreme Court Advisory Committee (2021-2024); MALDEF Law School Scholarship Committee (2012–present); Yale Club of Dallas (2006–present); Yale Law School Association Executive Committee (2015–2018); Yale Latino Alumni Association (2009–present); Business Council for the Arts–Leadership Arts Class (2010–2011); The Patrick E. Higginbotham American Inn of Court (Associate) (2007–2008)

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