J. Craig Buchan is an AV Preeminent-rated trial lawyer whose broad litigation practice encompasses the areas of complex business disputes, products liability, drug and medical device litigation, oil and gas litigation, class actions, healthcare, personal injury, and professional negligence. He is often engaged on matters involving highly complex scientific, medical and technical issues and has represented Fortune 500 companies, manufacturers, energy companies, and healthcare companies in a variety of contexts, including commercial disputes, consumer products, toxic torts, construction claims, premises liability, catastrophic injury and wrongful death.
Throughout his career, Craig has developed extensive experience providing hands-on management of all aspects of civil litigation — from discovery to appeals — and has successfully tried numerous cases in state and federal courts in Oklahoma. He also frequently serves as Oklahoma and regional counsel to national and international companies in complex civil lawsuits, including matters involving the coordination of multi-district litigation (MDL) and the defense of class actions.
Craig is a 2005 graduate of the International Association of Defense Counsel’s Trial Academy at Stanford Law School and a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA). His experience and expertise have earned him inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (commercial litigation; mass tort litigation/class actions – defendants) and Oklahoma Super Lawyers.
Prior to joining McAfee & Taft in 2014, Craig was a partner with aTulsa-based litigation firm.Download Bio (PDF)
Business Disputes and Oil and Gas Litigation:
- Obtained dismissal of a Fortune 500 midstream energy company in the District Court of Kansas based on lack of subject matter jurisdiction, including denial of a motion to amend to add Clean Air Act claims to invoke federal jurisdiction.
- Successfully defended one of Oklahoma’s largest automobile dealership owners on claims of breach of contract and specific performance on the sale of a dealership under a lease-purchase option. The representation resulted in a settlement that netted the client $1.7 million above the original demand.
- Obtained summary judgment for a publicly traded oil and gas exploration company in the Southern District of Texas discharging oil and gas liens wrongfully filed and in violation of a lien waiver provision in the parties’ master service agreement. The ruling invalidated more than $4 million of liens on the company’s properties.
- Obtained summary judgment for a publicly traded oil and gas exploration company in the Southern District of Texas on the untimeliness of lien filings under Oklahoma law, netting the company a recovery of nearly $1 million.
- Successfully represented a regional oil and gas company in a lawsuit against various defendants for violation of a contractual right of first refusal (“ROFR”) in an oil and gas lease. Upon filing a motion for summary judgment, defendants agreed to settle the case.
- Successfully represented one of the nation’s leading healthcare practice management companies on claims of breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty.
- Significantly involved in the representation of a large regional bank on claims of breach of contract and fraud for the purchase of debt from a large retail company.
Life Sciences, Medical Device and Products Liability:
- Served as Oklahoma counsel for an international dialysis manufacturer and healthcare provider on product liability claims asserted by more than 300 plaintiffs in Oklahoma involving personal injury and death. Successfully removed hundreds of plaintiffs and claims to federal court under theories of fraudulent joinder and misjoinder and successfully defended remaining state court claims.
- Served as Oklahoma counsel for a global leader in food safety involving multiple claims of personal injury and wrongful death in Oklahoma state and federal courts stemming from a national outbreak of Listeria. Obtained dismissal of plaintiffs’ claims in the Eastern District of Oklahoma.
- Successfully represented the principal researcher in a multi-plaintiff action alleging numerous healthcare providers and institutions failed to ensure a clinical trial for a cancer vaccine followed federal regulations for human subject protection, resulting in injury and death.
- Obtained a favorable result in favor of a large manufacturer of bovie cautery medical devices on claims of product defect resulting in personal injury.
- Served as Oklahoma counsel for a manufacture of contact lens solution on product liability claims involving allegations of decreased vision and blindness.
- Successfully represented a national provider of anatomic pathology and molecular diagnostic services in multiple cases of professional negligence and wrongful death.
- Obtained a favorable result for a national seat belt manufacturer on product liability claims involving claims of traumatic brain injury and paralysis.
- Obtained a favorable result for a national tool distributor in a product liability case involving significant property damage due to an electrical fire.
Personal Injury and Wrongful Death:
- Obtained summary judgment for one of the nation’s largest philanthropic organizations on allegations of sexual abuse.
- Obtained a jury verdict in the Northern District of Oklahoma in favor of a major trucking company involving allegations of personal injury.
- Successfully represented an international beverage company on claims of traumatic brain and catastrophic injury related to a trucking accident.
- Obtained a favorable result for a national philanthropic organization in a case involving catastrophic and permanent injury to a minor.
- Obtained a favorable result for a property management company in a premises liability action involving an apartment fire that caused catastrophic injuries and death to multiple plaintiffs.
- Successfully represented one of the nation’s largest retail stores in multiple actions involving claims of premises liability and personal injury.
- Obtained a favorable result for one of the nation’s largest pipeline equipment and services company on claims of personal injury from a transportation accident.
Professional Liability Litigation:
- Obtained summary judgment for a psychiatrist in a highly publicized case involving multimillion-dollar claims of professional negligence and wrongful death of a minor. Judgment affirmed on appeal.
- Obtained a jury verdict in Tulsa County, Oklahoma, in favor of a gastroenterologist and a medical facility on claims of professional negligence and wrongful death.
- Obtained a jury verdict in Mayes County, Oklahoma, for a physician regarding allegations of professional negligence and wrongful death of an infant.
- Obtained jury verdicts in Tulsa County, Oklahoma, in two cases in favor of two general surgeons and their surgical group on claims of professional negligence and wrongful death.
- Obtained a jury verdict in Tulsa County, Oklahoma, in favor of a neuroradiologist in a case alleging professional negligence. The case was appealed, reversed, and tried again resulting in a second jury verdict in favor of the physician.
- Obtained dismissal of a Texas physician on grounds of personal and subject matter jurisdiction in a case of professional negligence. Dismissal affirmed on appeal.
- Obtained summary judgment for an emergency room physician on claims of medical negligence based on the tolling of the statute of limitations.
- Obtained a voluntary dismissal for a cardio-thoracic surgeon in a professional negligence case after filing summary judgment on liability.
- Successfully defended a roofing manufacturer on claims the product and its installation caused the collapse of a large casino resulting in damages in excess of $25 million. Obtained dismissal of all claims against the principal of the company. After nearly four years of litigation, the matter was resolved for nuisance value.
- Obtained a favorable result for a fireproofing company on multimillion-dollar claims of construction defect and breach of contract made by one of the nation’s largest movie theater chains.
Honors and Awards
- Named a “Future Star” by Benchmark Litigation
- Selected by peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (commercial litigation; mass tort litigation/class actions – defendants)
- Listed in Oklahoma Super Lawyers
- Named to Oklahoma Super Lawyers’ list of “Top 50 Lawyers”
Professional Organizations and Memberships
- Oklahoma Bar Association
- Tulsa County Bar Association
- International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC)
- Defense Research Institute (DRI)
- Oklahoma Association of Defense Counsel (OADC)
- American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA)
- Council Oak/Johnson-Sontag American Inn of Court (Barrister; President-Elect)
Civic Involvement and Leadership
- Board of Advisors, Tulsa Regional Chamber
- Tulsa Lawyers for Children (Pro Bono Attorney)
- Indian Nations Council of the Boy Scouts of America (Executive Board)
- Philbrook Museum of Art Young Masters Society
- University of Oklahoma President’s Associates