James Howard

Naman Howell Smith & Lee, PLLC

James is a business attorney with practice experience in a wide range of sectors. James has helped small companies, start-ups, and large multi-state and international enterprises with a number issues including entity formation, investment, financing, target acquisition, and company sales. Importantly, James also provides assistance in operational matters affecting businesses on a day-to-day basis, such as employee/consultant issues and vendor/customer contract negotiation.

James has specific experience in providing counsel to technology-based companies and has devoted a large portion of his practice to the telecommunications industry. James prides himself in learning and understanding the technology that underlies this industry and has experience drafting and negotiating right-of-way arrangements, office, POP, and tower leases/licenses, dark fiber agreements, customer service/capacity agreements (including grant-funded), and technology vendor contracts.

James also has specific experience in providing counsel to credit unions and has experience structuring the operation of credit unions, addressing the myriad of regulatory issues affecting credit unions on a daily basis, and negotiating key vendor contracts.

James has a passion for Texas business law and clean, simple contract drafting. He teaches regular small business law classes for the City of Austin’s Small Business Development Center and Austin Community College, and runs a website, https://www.texasbusinesscounsel.com/, providing free access to the basic legal forms businesses need to start and run efficiently.

Above all, James’s practice is focused on one thing: his clients. James strives to be responsive, available, timely, and, of course, effective.

Areas of Practice

General Business Law
Corporate Law
Real Estate Law
Estate Planning

Bar Admissions

Texas, 2011


Baylor University School of Law, Waco, Texas
J.D. – 2011
Honors: cum laude
Honors: Recipient of the Dean’s Academic Scholarship
Honors: Recipient of the William R. Trail Award
Honors: Recipient William J. Boswell Memorial Award
Honors: Recipient of the Jerry L. Beane Award for Excellence in Legal Writing
Law Review: Baylor Law Review, Executive Editor, 2009 – 2011

Louisiana State University Shreveport, Shreveport, Louisiana
B.A. – 2008
Honors: magna cum laude
Honors: International Lincoln Foundation Fellow
Major: Political Science

Published Works

Where Do We Go From Here?: A Survey of Series LLCs in Texas in Light of the Federal Tax Classification for the Organization, 63 Baylor L. Rev. 850
A Kink in the Shield: Evanston Insurance Co. v. Dillards Department Store Inc. and the State of Limited Liability for Limited Liability Partnerships in Texas, 63 Baylor L. Rev. 268

Professional Associations and Memberships

State Bar of Texas, Member, 2011 – Present
Business Law Section, 2012 – Present
Travis County Bar Association, 2012 – Present
Austin Bar Association, 2012 – Present
Austin Young Lawyers Association, 2012 – Present