Cliff Ernst’s diverse clientele include governmental agencies and a full range of businesses from start-up companies to large corporations in a variety of industries including real estate and hospitality, healthcare, professional services, technology, construction, oil and gas and publishing. His work encompasses mergers and acquisitions; private equity offerings; venture capital and debt financings; general contracting; and general corporate counseling.

Cliff frequently acts as an outside general counsel and provides advice to executive officers and directors of public and privately-held companies, a testament to the strong and lasting relationships he builds with his clients.

He is committed to providing cost effective, high quality legal services with an emphasis on providing practical advice based on an understanding of his clients’ business concerns. Cliff is also highly committed to community service and has held key leadership positions with several Austin-based charities.

Financial Services

  • Represented a financial services company in a dividend recapitalization which included borrowing under a syndicated term loan.
  • Texas counsel to a publicly traded national homebuilder in connection with authority documentation and legal opinions for Texas subsidiary entities.
  • Represented publicly traded hospital corporation in commercial paper financing secured by accounts receivable of 17 operating entities.
  • Represented State of Texas fund information and investments by alternative asset investment entities.
  • Represented real estate investment partnerships in a series of real estate backed loans.
  • Represented e-commerce company in a series of venture capital financings.
  • Represented publishing company in revolving line of credit.

Corporate & Business Transactions

  • Represented an oil and gas company from startup stage through recapitalization from a leading venture capital investor in oil and gas.
  • Represented an entertainment company in connection with its investment in a Canadian technology firm developing technology for the client.
  • Represented national public relations firm in sale to multinational holding company.
  • Represented purchasers of large apartment complexes in private placements of limited partnership interests.
  • Represented commercial farming operation in a broker-assisted private placement of Class B limited partnership interests.
  • Represented overseas manufacturer of power supplies in negotiations of supply contracts with large computer manufacturers.
  • Represented real estate partnerships in development agreement with governing bodies for 650-acre multi-use project.
  • Represented U.S. and Mexican owners of drug and alcohol rehabilitation facilities in a lawsuit settlement agreement involving significant restructuring of ownership positions.
  • Served as outside general counsel to an affiliated group of limited partnerships that own and operate residential and commercial real estate projects.
  • Serve as outside general counsel to a professional corporation of accountants specializing in sophisticated tax reporting and planning.
  • Served as outside general counsel to a professional association of physicians specializing in gynecology and obstetrics.
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America® as Lawyer of the Year in Banking and Finance Law — Austin, in 2018
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America® as Lawyer of the Year in Securities/Capital Markets Law — Austin, in 2017
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America®, Banking and Finance Law; Corporate Law; Mergers & Acquisitions Law; Securities/Capital Markets Law, 2010-2020
  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rating, (2019-2020)
  • Co-Presenter, Acquisition and Disposition of LLC's in Texas and Delaware, 17th Annual Course - Choice, Governance & Acquisition of Entities, Texas Bar CLE, Dallas, Texas
    May 24, 2019

  • Austin Bar Association: Business, Corporate and Tax Section, Health Law Section, and Computer and Technology Section, Member
  • American Bar Association: Business Law and Health Law Sections
  • State Bar of Texas: Business Law Section, Computer and Technology Section
  • The Long Center for the Performing Arts (Past Chair, Board of Trustees)
  • Ballet Austin (Past President)
  • Austin Sunshine Camps and Young Men’s Business League of Austin (Past President)
  • Austin Business Committee for the Arts (Former Chair)
  • Headliners Club of Austin, Member
  • Knights of Austin Symphony Orchestra, Member