Supreme Court of Texas Decisions 2017

Graphic Packaging Corp. v. Hegar (Opinion)  
Date: December 22, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0669

Justia Opinion Summary: A taxpayer that conducts business in multiple states must apportion its business revenue among the states in which it does business. Texas Tax Code section 171.106 provides for such apportionment under a single-factor fo...

In the Interest of K.S.L., a Child (Opinion)  
Date: December 22, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0558

Justia Opinion Summary: The San Antonio Department of Family and Protective Services brought suit on behalf of K.S.L., an infant, stating that Mother had tested positive for drugs. Father later admitted he had relapsed. There was an open legal...

In the Interest of M.M., a Child (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 22, 2017
Docket Number: 17-0044

Justia Opinion Summary: Mother had a history of drug use, had been incarcerated for heroin use, and was observed injecting heroin days before the San Antonio Department of Family and Protective Services filed a petition with respect to two-year...

In re Turner (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 22, 2017
Docket Number: 17-0099

Justia Opinion Summary: The Vethan Law Firm represents Turner in a suit against Lopez, who is represented by Cweren. Vethan hired Wright as a paralegal to work on Turner’s case. Wright exchanged emails with lawyers, communicated with Turner, r...

State Office of Risk Management v. Martinez (Opinion)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0337

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this workers’ compensation was the meaning of the word “issue” as used in Title 5 of the Labor Code. The trial court ruled that Respondent did not suffer a compensable injury and was therefore not entitled...

In re Accident Fund General Insurance Co. (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0556

Justia Opinion Summary: The Division of Workers’ Compensation has exclusive jurisdiction over statutory and tort claims alleging the Texas Workers’ Compensation Act’s “bona fide offer of employment” process was misused to fabricate grounds for...

In re Coppola (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0723

Justia Opinion Summary: In this tort suit arising from a real estate transaction, the Supreme Court conditionally granted mandamus relief to Relators from an order denying leave to designate Plaintiffs’ legal advisors as responsible third parti...

University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston v. Rios (Opinion)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0836

Justia Opinion Summary: If a plaintiff sues both public employees and their employer, section 101.106(e) of the Texas Tort Claims Act requires that the employees be immediately dismissed upon the employer’s motion, and this statutory right to d...

Allen-Pieroni v. Pieroni (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0900

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this appeal from a slander-of-title judgment was how the special or economic damages should be measured. When Marc Pieroni and Bonnie Allen-Pieroni divorced, Bonnie was awarded $500,000, which Marc paid in...

Miller v. JSC Lake Highlands Operations, LP (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0986

Justia Opinion Summary: The trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying Defendants’ motions to dismiss this health care liability action when it read several experts’ reports together to satisfy the requirement of the Texas Medical Liab...

Tafel v. State (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 16-1020

Justia Opinion Summary: The proceedings involving the forfeiture of two handguns pursuant to Tex. Code Crim. Proc. 18.19 are civil in nature such that the Supreme Court has jurisdiction, but, in this case, conviction for possession of a weapon...

City of Krum, Texas v. Rice (Per Curiam)  
Date: December 15, 2017
Docket Number: 17-0081

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated the judgments of the court of appeals and the trial court in this interlocutory appeal arising from Respondent’s lawsuit contesting the validity of a sex offender residency restrictions ordinanc...

In re National Lloyds Insurance Co. (Corrected)  
Date: December 8, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0591

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this discovery dispute arising in the context of multidistrict litigation (MDL) involving allegations of underpaid homeowner insurance claims was whether a party’s attorney-billing information is discoverable...

Longview Energy Co. v. Huff Energy Fund LP (Corrected)  
Date: December 8, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0968

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals reversing the trial court’s judgment awarding a constructive trust to Longview Energy Company on certain mineral leases and related property and requiring t...

City of Magnolia 4A Economic Development Corp. v. Smedley (Per Curiam)  
Date: October 27, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0718

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed in part the judgment of the court of appeals, which dismissed Petitioners’ appeal for lack of jurisdiction, holding that Petitioners timely filed their interlocutory appeal. Respondent filed...

Office of Attorney General of Texas (Opinion)  
Date: October 20, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0944

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this appeal from a Title IV-D associate judge’s order modifying conservatorship and child support for three children was whether the Title IV-D associate judge had authority to enter an order modifying conser...

Bustamante v. Ponte (Opinion)  
Date: September 29, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0509

Justia Opinion Summary: Legally sufficient evidence supported the jury’s conclusion in this case that the negligence of a premature infant’s treating neonatologist, more likely than not, proximately caused the infant’s loss of vision. D.B. was...

D Magazine Partners, L.P. v. Rosenthal (Corrected)  
Date: September 29, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0790

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgment of the court of appeals affirming the trial court’s denial of a magazine’s motion to dismiss Plaintiff’s defamation claim under the Texas Citizens Part...

Allways Auto Group, Ltd. v. Walters (Per Curiam)  
Date: September 29, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0134

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the court of appeals reversing the trial court’s grant of summary judgment for Petitioner auto dealer, whom Respondent sued for negligent entrustment, and reinstated summary jud...

Starwood Management, LLC v. Swaim (Per Curiam)  
Date: September 29, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0431

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgments of the court of appeals and trial court concluding that an expert witness affidavit in this legal malpractice case was conclusory regarding causation. Plaintiff sued Defendant at...

King Street Patriots v. Texas Democratic Party (Opinion)  
Date: June 30, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0320

Justia Opinion Summary: The Texas Democratic Party sued King Street Patriots (Defendant) alleging noncompliance with Election Code provisions imposing restraints and obligations on “political committees” and corporations. Defendant, in turn, ar...

Pidgeon v. Turner (Opinion)  
Date: June 30, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0688

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2013, the Mayor of Houston directed that same-sex spouses of employees who have been legally married in another jurisdiction be afforded the same benefits as spouses of a heterosexual marriage. Plaintiffs, Houston tax...

United Scaffolding, Inc. v. Levine (Opinion)  
Date: June 30, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0921

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff filed suit against Defendant, the company that constructed a scaffold from which Defendant fell, claiming that Defendant improperly constructed the scaffold and failed to remedy or warn of the dangerous conditi...

Hersh v. Tatum (Opinion)  
Date: June 30, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0096

Justia Opinion Summary: A defendant may obtain dismissal of a suit under the Texas Citizens Participation Act alleging “a communication made in connection with a matter of public concern” even if the defendant denies making such communication....

Noble Energy, Inc. v. Conocophillips Co. (Opinion)  
Date: June 23, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0502

Justia Opinion Summary: ConocoPhillips Co. and Alma Energy Corp. exchanged oil and gas interests under an exchange agreement in which each indemnified the other for any environmental claims related to the properties received. Alma later filed f...

Pagayon v. Exxon Mobil Corp. (Opinion)  
Date: June 23, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0642

Justia Opinion Summary: The employer under the circumstances of this case had no duty to control its employees. J.R.and Carlos worked as cashiers at a convenience store owned by Exxon Mobile Corporation. One evening, Carlos picked a fistfight...

Samson Exploration, LLC v. T.S. Reed Properties, Inc. (Opinion)  
Date: June 23, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0886

Justia Opinion Summary: In this dispute involving mineral interests pooled for natural gas production, lessors and other stakeholders alleged that the lessee underpaid royalties owed to them under their mineral leases and pooling agreements. Th...

Wenske v. Ealy (Opinion)  
Date: June 23, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0353

Justia Opinion Summary: In construing an unambiguous deed, the parties’ intent is paramount, and that intent is determined by conducting a careful and detailed examination of a deed in its entirety rather than applying some default rule that ap...

Great American Insurance Co. v. Hamel (Opinion)  
Date: June 16, 2017
Docket Number: 14-1007

Justia Opinion Summary: Homeowners sued Builder for failing to construct their home in a good and workmanlike manner. Builder’s commercial general liability insurer (Insurer) refused to defend Builder in the suit. Judgment was granted in favor...

Community Health Systems Professional Services Corp. v. Hansen (Opinion)  
Date: June 16, 2017
Docket Number: 14-1033

Justia Opinion Summary: This action stemmed from a “without cause” termination of Plaintiff’s five-year employment contract at the end of his third contract year. Plaintiff brought claims against his former employer, its chief executive officer...

Sommers v. Sandcastle Homes, Inc. (Opinion)  
Date: June 16, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0848

Justia Opinion Summary: Tex. Prop. Code 12.0071, the lis pendens expunction statute, does not legally eradicate coextensive information that may be obtained independently of the information contained in the notice of underlying litigation. Two...

In re Dean Davenport (Opinion)  
Date: June 16, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0882

Justia Opinion Summary: The dispute arose from a contingency fee agreement (agreement) for legal services. Attorneys filed suit against Client seeking a judgment that would include an ownership interest in a business partially formed by Client...

Kyle v. Strasburger (Per Curiam)  
Date: June 16, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0046

Justia Opinion Summary: This case arose from an allegedly forged home-equity loan. Plaintiff sued the lenders, bringing several claims, including statutory fraud and violations of the Texas Finance Code and Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act....

Helix Energy Solutions Group, Inc. v. Gold (Opinion)  
Date: June 16, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0075

Justia Opinion Summary: In this admiralty law case, a certain vessel - taken out of service, subjected to a twenty-month conversion process, and unable to engage in transportation during the entirety of the claimant’s onboard employment - was “...

In re National Lloyds Insurance Co. (Opinion)  
Date: June 9, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0591

Justia Opinion Summary: A party’s attorney-billing information is normally not discoverable when the party challenges an opposing party’s attorney-fee request as unreasonable or unnecessary but neither uses its own attorney fees as a comparator...

Columbia Valley Healthcare System, L.P. v. Zamarripa (Opinion)  
Date: June 9, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0909

Justia Opinion Summary: An expert report required by the Texas Medical Liability Act must address proximate cause. Plaintiff brought this health care liability claim against Hospital and others for the death of Yolanda Iris Flores. To satisfy...

Longview Energy Co. v. Huff Energy Fund, LP (Opinion)  
Date: June 9, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0968

Justia Opinion Summary: Company sued two of its directors and entities associated with them after discovering that one of the entities had purchased mineral leases in an area where Company had been investigating the possibility of buying leases...

Melden & Hunt, Inc. v. East Rio Hondo Water Supply Corp. (Opinion)  
Date: June 9, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0078

Justia Opinion Summary: The trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying Defendant’s motion to dismiss based on the sufficiency of a certificate of merit supplied by Plaintiff. Plaintiff, a water supply corporation, contracted with Defe...

Bedford v. Spassoff (Per Curiam)  
Date: June 9, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0229

Justia Opinion Summary: Darin Spassoff and 6 Tool, LLC, formerly known as Dallas Dodgers Baseball Club, LLC (the Dodgers), sued Stephen Bedford for libel and business disparagement, among other claims. The claims arose from Bedford’s act of pos...

Exxon Mobile Corp. v. Rincones (Opinion)  
Date: May 26, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0240

Justia Opinion Summary: When Respondent’s employer received a report that Respondent failed an employment-related drug test, the employer ceased assigning Respondent any work. Respondent filed this lawsuit against his employer, WHM Custom Servi...

Kinsel v. Lindsey (Opinion)  
Date: May 26, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0403

Justia Opinion Summary: While the Supreme Court was asked in this case to recognize tortious interference with an inheritance as a viable cause of action in Texas, the court was not persuaded to consider it because Petitioners and cross-respond...

Chavez v. Kansas City Southern Railway Co. (Per Curiam)  
Date: May 26, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0717

Justia Opinion Summary: The court of appeals misapplied the rule that, at trial, a presumption operates to establish a fact until rebutted but not in summary judgment proceedings. Petitioner sued Respondents (the Railway) for the wrongful dea...

Horizon Health Corp. v. Acadia Healthcare Co. (Opinion)  
Date: May 26, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0819

Justia Opinion Summary: A jury awarded Plaintiff future lost profits based on Defendants’ failure to comply with their covenants not to compete and covenants not to solicit. The jury also awarded Plaintiff exemplary damages and attorney fees. T...

In re State Farm Lloyds (Opinion)  
Date: May 26, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0905

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court took the opportunity in these consolidated mandamus proceedings to provide further clarity regarding electronically stored information (ESI) discovery. In this dispute, the requesting party sought ESI...

Davis v. Mueller (Opinion)  
Date: May 26, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0155

Justia Opinion Summary: In dispute in this case were 1991 deeds purporting to pass title of all the grantors’ mineral interests in Harrison County to Petitioners. In 2011, the grantors deed to Respondent the same interests they had conveyed to...

Town of Dish v. Atmos Energy Corp. (Opinion)  
Date: May 19, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0613

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioners, energy companies, owned four natural gas compressor stations and a metering station outside the town of Dish. In 2011, the town and eighteen of its residents sued the energy companies, alleging trespass and...

Lightning Oil Co. v. Anadarko E&P Onshore, LLC (Opinion)  
Date: May 19, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0910

Justia Opinion Summary: Respondent was a party to an oil and gas lease that restricted its use of the surface estate and required it to drill from off-site locations when feasible. Briscoe Ranch, Inc. owed an adjacent surface estate and agreed...

Honorable Mark Henry v. Honorable Lonnie Cox (Opinion)  
Date: May 19, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0993

Justia Opinion Summary: Galveston County Commissioners Court may set a salary range for a county judicial employee while letting Galveston County district judges decide if compensation within that range is reasonable. While the judicial branch...

Pinto Technology Ventures, LP v. Sheldon (Opinion)  
Date: May 19, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0007

Justia Opinion Summary: Certain minority shareholders filed suit in a Texas court alleging dilution of equity interests. Defendants responded by invoking a forum-selection clause designating Delaware as the proper forum for disputes arising out...

Bankdirect Capital Finance, LLC v. Plasma Fab, LLC (Opinion)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0635

Justia Opinion Summary: Plasma Fab, LLC obtained a general liability insurance policy from Scottsdale Insurance Company and financed the policy with BankDirect Capital Finance, LLC. The agreement between BankDirect and Plasma Fab granted BankDi...

University of the Incarnate Word v. Redus (Opinion)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0732

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue was whether a private university that operates a state-authorized police department is a “governmental unit” for purposes of Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code 51.014(a)(8), which provides for an interlocutory appeal f...

Loya v. Loya (Opinion)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0763

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this family law dispute was whether a mediated settlement agreement (MSA) entered into the parties after nearly two years of divorce proceedings partitioned a discretionary employee bonus Husband received nin...

Shields Limited Partnership v. Bradeberry (Opinion)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0803

Justia Opinion Summary: Waiver of a nonwaiver provision cannot be anchored in the same conduct the parties specifically agreed would not give rise to a waiver of contract rights. The long-term tenant in this forcible-detainer action frequently...

First Bank v. Brumitt (Opinion)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0844

Justia Opinion Summary: A plaintiff who was not a party to a written contract was not permitted to enforce the agreement as a third-party beneficiary. DTSG, Ltd. filed suit against First Bank. Richard Brumitt intervened as an additional plaint...

Green v. Dallas County Schools (Per Curiam)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0214

Justia Opinion Summary: Paul Green, a former bus monitor for Dallas County Schools (DCS), was terminated because he admitted to “urinating on [himself] and in a water bottle while onboard [a] school bus[.]” Green filed this lawsuit, alleging th...

Harris County Appraisal District v. Texas Workforce Commission (Opinion)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0346

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court held that several members of the Harris County Appraisal Review Board were presently or formerly employed by the Harris County Appraisal District (HCAD) under provisions of the Texas Unemployment Compen...

Ad Villarai, LLC v. Pak (Per Curiam)  
Date: May 12, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0373

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue was whether a newly-elected district court judge or the former judge he or she replaced may file findings of fact following a bench trial over which the former judge presided before his or her term expired. The...

Cadena Comercial USA Corp. v. Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 14-0819

Justia Opinion Summary: When Cadena Comercial USA Corp., a company formed to operate convenience stores, sought a retailer’s permit to sell alcohol, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) protested, arguing that, if the permit were gran...

Forest Oil Corp. v. El Rucio Land & Cattle Co. (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 14-0979

Justia Opinion Summary: Respondent, who owned a ranch, sued Petitioner, which produced natural gas on the ranch, for underpayment of royalties and underproduction of its lease. The parties resolved their dispute with two agreements that contain...

Pedernal Energy, LLC v. Bruington (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0123

Justia Opinion Summary: Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code Ann. 150.002 provides that if an expert affidavit in a lawsuit or arbitration for damages arising out of the provision of professional services by licensed or registered professionals is not f...

Bennett v. Grant (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0338

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was how the harm likely to result from a malicious prosecution should be evaluated in calculating exemplary damages. The Supreme Court held that the potential harm analysis should focus only on the...

Rogers v. Zanetti (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0557

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs sued their former attorneys and the law firm at which they practiced alleging legal malpractice arising from prior litigation. The trial court granted summary judgment in Defendants’ favor without specifying t...

BP America Production Co. v. Red Deer Resources, LLC (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0569

Justia Opinion Summary: After BP America Production turned of the well valve to a gas well, Red Deer Resources, LLC, the top-lease holder, filed suit, asking the trial court to declare that BP’s lease had terminated. The jury found that the wel...

El Paso Healthcare System, Ltd. v. Murphy (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0575

Justia Opinion Summary: Laura Murphy, who at the relevant period worked as an independent practitioner under contract with West Texas OB Anesthesia, filed claims against El Paso Healthcare System, d/b/a Las Palmas Medical Center, for statutory...

Marino v. Lenoir (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0610

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was whether a resident physician was entitled to dismissal of a malpractice claim on grounds that she was an employee of a governmental unit. Shana Lenoir died after receiving prenatal care at the U...

Etc Marketing, Ltd. v. Harris County Appraisal District (Opinion)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0687

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was whether the Commerce Clause’s limitations on a state’s power to tax interstate commerce bar property taxes levied on natural gas held in Texas without a destination while awaiting future resale...

Bartush-Schnitzius Foods Co. v. Cimco Refrigeration, Inc. (Per Curiam)  
Date: April 28, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0054

Justia Opinion Summary: Bartush-Schnitzius Foods Co., a food-product manufacturer, entered into an agreement with Cimco Refrigeration, Inc., a refrigeration contractor, to install a new refrigeration system. When disputes arose over the refrige...

USAA Texas Lloyds Co. v. Menchaca (Opinion)  
Date: April 7, 2017
Docket Number: 14-0721

Justia Opinion Summary: After Hurricane Ike struck Galveston island, Insured contracted her Insurer and reported that the storm had damaged her home. Insurer determined that its policy covered some of the damage but declined to pay Insured bene...

Laverie v. Wetherbe (Opinion)  
Date: April 7, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0217

Justia Opinion Summary: Respondent, a Texas Tech professor and associate dean, sued Petitioner, a colleague, for defamation after he was passed over for promotion. Petitioner filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that the Tort Claims Act...

Denbury Green Pipeline-Texas, LLC v. Texas Rice Land Partners, Ltd. (Revision)  
Date: April 7, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0225

Justia Opinion Summary: T-4 permit to Denbury Green Pipeline-Texas, LLC to obtain common-carrier status, which would give it eminent domain authority pursuant to the Natural Resources Code. Denbury Green, which was formed to build and operate a...

Engelman Irrigation District v. Shields Brothers, Inc. (Opinion)  
Date: March 17, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0188

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1992, Shields Brothers, Inc. sued the Engelman Irrigation District, a governmental entity, alleging that Engelman had breached a contract to deliver water to Shields. Engelman alleged in its defense that it had gover...

First United Pentecostal Church of Beaumont v. Parker (Opinion)  
Date: March 17, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0708

Justia Opinion Summary: The First Pentecostal Church of Beaumont entrusted over one million dollars for safekeeping to The Lamb Law Firm, P.C., and the firm deposited the money into its trust account. In just over one year, the church’s money w...

D Magazine Partners, L.P. v. Rosenthal (Opinion)  
Date: March 17, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0790

Justia Opinion Summary: D Magazine published an article that identified Janay Rosenthal as someone who “has figured out how to get food stamps while living in the lap of luxury.” Rosenthal sued D Magazine for defamation and other causes of acti...

M&F Worldwide Corp. v. Pepsi-Cola Metropolitan Bottling Co. (Opinion)  
Date: March 3, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0083

Justia Opinion Summary: Several related nonresident corporate defendants entered into an agreement with Texas companies to settle a New York lawsuit. In the underlying suit, Plaintiff, a nonresident, alleged that, by virtue of the settlement ag...

BP America Production Co. v. Laddex, Ltd. (Opinion)  
Date: March 3, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0248

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case the trial court entered judgment terminating a bottom lease based on jury findings that the lease failed to produce in paying quantities over a specified period of time. The court of appeals reversed and rem...

Levinson Alcoser Associates, L.P. v. El Pistolon II, Ltd. (Opinion)  
Date: February 24, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0232

Justia Opinion Summary: Landowner hired Architects to design a commercial retail project and oversee construction. Landowner subsequently sued, alleging breach of contract and negligence in the project’s design and negligence. With its original...

ExxonMobil Corp. v. Lazy R Ranch, LP (Opinion)  
Date: February 24, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0270

Justia Opinion Summary: ExxonMobile Corporation conducted oil and gas drilling and production operations on the Lazy R Ranch for nearly sixty years. After ExxonMobil sold its operations, the Ranch filed suit, claiming soil and groundwater conta...

Texas State Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists v. Texas Medical Ass’n (Opinion)  
Date: February 24, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0299

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1994, the Texas State Board of Examiners of Marriage and Family Therapists (the Therapists Board) adopted a rule listing specific therapeutic services that licensed marriage and family therapists (MFTs) may provide. A...

Great American Insurance Co. v. Primo (Opinion)  
Date: February 24, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0317

Justia Opinion Summary: Before resigning his director and treasurer positions with Briar Green, Robert Primo wrote himself two checks from Briar Green’s account totaling approximately $100,000. Briar Green made a claim for the alleged loss with...

B.C. v. Steak N Shake Operations, Inc. (Opinion)  
Date: February 24, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0404

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff filed a complaint against her former employer (Defendant), claiming assault, sexual assault, and battery, among other causes of action. Defendant moved for summary judgment on all claims, arguing, in part, that...

ExxonMobil Pipeline Co. v. Coleman (Opinion)  
Date: February 24, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0407

Justia Opinion Summary: Travis Coleman was a terminal technician formerly employed by ExxonMobil Pipeline Company (EMPCo). Coleman sued EMPCo and his two former supervisors for defamation, alleging that the statements by his supervisors about t...

Valero Refining - Texas, L.P. v. Galveston Central Appraisal District (Opinion)  
Date: February 24, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0492

Justia Opinion Summary: In appraising real property, an appraisal district may choose to divide a single tract into multiple accounts for various reasons. Valero Refining-Texas L.P. (Valero), the property owner in this case, protested some, but...

Paxton v. City of Dallas (Opinion)  
Date: February 3, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0073

Justia Opinion Summary: The City of Dallas sought relief from two attorney general decisions concluding that the City must disclose confidential attorney-client communications pursuant to public-information requests the City received regarding...

Crawford v. XTO Energy, Inc (Opinion)  
Date: February 3, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0142

Justia Opinion Summary: An oil-and-gas lessor sued the lessee for failure to pay royalties. The trial court concluded that the lessor’s neighboring landowners were necessary parties to the suit and dismissed the case without prejudice because t...

Colorado County, Texas v. Staff (Opinion)  
Date: February 3, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0912

Justia Opinion Summary: Under Chapter 614, Subchapter B of the Texas Government Code, a covered peace officer cannot be disciplined based on a complaint unless certain procedural requirements are met. At issue in this case was whether Subchapte...

Kramer v. Kastleman (Opinion)  
Date: January 27, 2017
Docket Number: 14-1038

Justia Opinion Summary: During their marriage, Respondent and Petitioner produced one child and a $30 million marital estate. During marriage-dissolution proceedings, the parties executed two agreements settling all issues. The trial court oral...

Brady v. Klentzman (Opinion)  
Date: January 27, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0056

Justia Opinion Summary: Wade Brady sued LeaAnne Klentzman and the West Fort Bend Star (collectively, the media defendants) for libel and libel per se, arguing that a newspaper article portrayed him as “unruly and intoxicated” when he interacted...

UDR Texas Properties, L.P. v. Petrie (Opinion)  
Date: January 27, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0197

Justia Opinion Summary: Alan Petrie was assaulted and robbed in The Gallery apartment complex’s visitor parking lot. Petrie sued the apartment complex and its owners (collectively, Gallery), alleging that it knew or shown have known about the h...

Nassar v. Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance Co. (Opinion)  
Date: January 27, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0978

Justia Opinion Summary: Elie and Rhonda Nassar filed a claim with Liberty Mutual Insurance Policy under their homeowners’ policy when their property was damaged by Hurricane Ike. Disputes arose over the value of various items of damaged propert...

Hall v. McRaven (Opinion)  
Date: January 27, 2017
Docket Number: 16-0773

Justia Opinion Summary: Wallace Hall, a regent for The University of Texas System, filed suit against William McRaven in his official capacity as the System’s Chancellor, for McRaven’s refusal to grant Hall complete access to records containing...

Oncor Electric Delivery Co. v. Public Utility Commission of Texas (Opinion)  
Date: January 6, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0005

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2002, the Public Utilities Regulatory Act (PURA) implemented a competitive retail market for electricity in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas. Each incumbent, vertically integrated electric utility within the...

Denbury Green Pipeline-Texas, LLC v. Texas Rice Land Partners, Ltd. (Opinion)  
Date: January 6, 2017
Docket Number: 15-0225

Justia Opinion Summary: Denbury Green Pipeline-Texas, LLC was formed to build and operate a carbon dioxide pipeline known as “the Green Line” as a common carrier in Texas. Denbury Green filed a permit application with the Texas Railroad Commis...

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