SCOTX Wades Into The Political-Question Doctrine

Few lawyers remember much about the political-question doctrine beyond what they learned during their first year of law school. On the rare occasions that the doctrine is litigated, it usually occurs in a federal court rather than the state-court system. But in a rare exception to the mine run of cases involving the political-question doctrine, […]

Texas Supreme Court Resolves Issues Concerning Medical-Expense Affidavits

Section 18.001 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code allows a claimant to submit to the jury the issue of the reasonableness of medical expenses without the need for an expert by filing a statutorily compliant affidavit. The defendant may avoid this abbreviated procedure by filing a statutorily compliant counter-affidavit. Three questions arose under […]

Texas Supreme Court Clarifies Rules Governing Designation of Responsible Third Parties in Texas

The first decision is in re Dawson, 550 S.W.3d 625 (Tex. 2018) (orig. proceeding). The plaintiff sued a restaurant when one of its televisions fell off the wall and landed on her. In its interrogatory answers, the restaurant identified the person who installed the television. But in its initial disclosures, the restaurant did not identify […]

Judicial Interview of Children in Texas Conservatorship Proceedings: Can the Trial Court Seal the Record from the Parents?

The Texas Family Code requires a trial court to interview a child who is 12 years of age or older upon request of any party to determine the child’s wishes concerning conservatorship. Tex. Fam. Code § 153.009(a). And on the motion of any party, “the court shall cause a record of the interview to be […]

It’s All About the Bucks: The Collectibility Requirement in Texas Legal-Malpractice Cases

In a previous post, I wrote about the elements of a claim for legal malpractice in Texas: the existence of a duty; the lawyer’s breach of that duty; and proximate cause of damages as a result. Actually, though, many legal-malpractice cases engender the additional requirement to prove what is known as collectibility (and, yes, it […]

Texas Employees Are Entitled to Paid Time Off to Vote

As lawyers who have handled several election disputes, one question we often are asked in the run-up to an election is what right employees have to time off for work to cast their ballot. Fortunately, Texas law provides a straightforward answer. The Texas Election Code protects the right of employees to vote.  An employer cannot […]

Texas Requirements For Legal Malpractice Claims

  As one of the leading legal-malpractice firms in Texas, we get telephone calls, emails, and website inquiries almost every day from people wanting to sue Texas lawyers. Unfortunately, most people do not understand the circumstances that must exist to sue a lawyer successfully in Texas. This brief post explains the general requirements. A legal-malpractice […]

Texas Supreme Court Examines Emails As Contracts

The Supreme Court of Texas recently decided two cases involving efforts to enforce email exchanges as contracts. In Copano Energy, LLC v. Bujnoch (18-0044), the parties exchanged numerous emails before their anticipated signing of a formal contract. But they never executed the formal contract. One party then sued, claiming that the emails cumulatively constituted an […]

Moving to Withdraw Deemed Admissions: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You

Most Texas lawyers know that a party seeking to set aside deemed admissions ordinarily bears the burden to establish good cause and lack of prejudice. But many of these same lawyers do not realize that in many cases, this burden of proof actually shifts to the party opposing withdrawal of the deemed admissions. And sometimes, […]

Continuance Motions: They Need to be Written!

The rules of civil procedure require that a continuance motion be verified: “No application for a continuance shall be heard before the defendant files his defense, nor shall any continuance be granted except for sufficient cause supported by affidavit, or by consent of the parties, or by operation of law.” Tex. R. Civ. P. 251. […]