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Articles Posted in Texas

A drilling company in Texas paid $16 million to settle a lawsuit by the family of a woman killed by gas well equipment that fell from a company truck. The settlement was reached after the Pioneer Drilling truck driver admitted that he had given conflicting testimony in the case. The driver also admitted – and I’m sure this added millions to the case – that he and Pioneer officials attempted to falsify documents following the accident.

The Texas Supreme Court, in an 8-1 ruling, upheld a jury verdict that found Nationwide Insurance responsible for covering injuries sustained to a Texas family involved in a collision with one of its policyholders.

Nationwide’s insured was chased by police before the accident where he collided with the Plaintiffs. Nationwide refused to pay the claim, arguing that their policyholder had forfeited his right to coverage when he began the chase. Plaintiffs’ Texas accident lawyer argued that the logic of Nationwide’s argument is if you try to run a red light, speed, or take any other intentional act not intended to cause an accident in Texas, that would also be an intentional act for which there would be no insurance coverage. The Texas Supreme Court agreed, ruling that “Texas mandates liability insurance for drivers but if ordinary Texans are unprotected from those who speed or run red lights, but intend no harm to others by doing so, then Texas is replete with non-coverage notwithstanding its mandatory-coverage requirement.”

A spokesperson for Nationwide said the insurance company is “glad the high court has resolved the issue of whether a high-speed chase falls within the ‘intentional acts’ exclusion in Texas. Nationwide intends to comply with the courts ruling on this complex issue.” So Nationwide just wanted the issue resolved – that was their goal in all of this? Please.

Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar was named in a lawsuit following a fatal alcohol-related car crash. In the lawsuit, plaintiff claims the bar over-served a man on the night of the accident and was negligent in the death of her daughter.

This is an awful case. The man’s pickup truck collided with a car occupied by three teenagers, killing two people of them and seriously injuring the third. The drunk driver was also killed in the car accident.

As tragic as this case is, I have some concern with dram shop laws that hold bars accountable in these cases just because I think it is so difficult to track who has been served what at a bar.

The Texas Supreme Court heard arguments yesterday in a strange rehearing of a ruling that Texas lawmakers and other groups say deprives injury victims of their rights. The issue of whether contract employees covered by workers’ compensation can seek damages against work site owners for on-the-job injuries. A bipartisan group of Texas lawmakers, labor groups and accident victims have protested the decision saying the Texas high court erred in granting extended immunity provisions that were not part of legislative intent.

Interesting case. The Texas Supreme Court decision was unanimous but they get a rehearing because everyone thinks it was an awful call. Probably the best approach would be for Texas lawmakers to rewrite the law.

A Jury Verdict Research study found that the median compensation award for personal injury cases that go to trial in Texas is $22,360. Plainitffs recover about 52% of the time (which is consistent with the national average).

If you have been injured and need a personal injury lawyer anywhere in Texas, call our malpractice, product liability, and car accident lawyers at 800-553-8082.

When a lawyer gets a verdict or settlement in a 7 figure case, the lawyer can join the Million Dollar Advocates (of which I am a member). Last week, after a Texas jury awarded $1.5 million in a truck accident involving two men seriously injured after a semi crashed into their car, an Indiana based trucking company entered a more ignominious group of trucking companies that have had million-dollar truck accident verdicts entered against them based on truck accidents that occurred within a year, both Texas truck accidents. In 2005, Celadon took a $17.5 million jury hit in a truck accident case involving the death of a U.S. Army lieutenant, who was killed after getting rear-ended by a Celadon truck. The venue? Texas.

In this most recent case, two men were driving in their car on a highway in Waxahachie, Texas (near Dallas) when a Celadon Trucking Services tractor-trailer struck their car. The Plaintiffs’ Texas truck accident lawyer alleged in the Plaintiffs’ lawsuit that Celadon negligently hired the truck driver and that its driver caused the truck accident. The jury agreed.

One of the men suffered a fractured vertebra; the other sustained a serious injury to his right knee, which required several reconstructive surgeries. The latter man also suffered a mild traumatic brain injury and damage to his collarbone.

If you have talked to a personal injury lawyer who handles many car accident cases in the last six months, you will hear complaints that these cases are drying up. Yet, unfortunately, there is no indication we have fewer automobile accidents in this country. So why?

I think the main reason is that car insurance companies are getting better at reaching out to clients before they find a lawyer. Insurance companies may absolutely do this. Moreover, I think this works mostly with smaller auto accident cases. The reality—and this is something many car accident lawyers don’t want prospective clients to know—is that you can often handle small auto accident cases without a lawyer.

Our car accident lawyers handling your case will increase the value of your case. In fact, the mere involvement of our law firm, given our reputation, will increase the value of your case. But how much? If you have a big case, it will increase the value a great deal. Our car accident lawyers have been referred cases by other lawyers that already have an offer and we have gotten more than 35 times the offer given to the original lawyer. But our accident lawyers’ ability to add value to your case is directly proportional to the size of the case. If you have a case with an ER visit and a few physical therapy sessions, our car accident lawyers will increase the value of your case. And it will make your life easier because you have someone to process everything for you. But is it enough to make it worth hiring us? The answer to that varies from case to case. Our car accident lawyers used to take these kinds of cases because we thought it was a bad idea to deny anyone the right to a lawyer if they had a valid claim. Now, I’m telling at least a third of the people that call us with legitimate cases that they certainly can hire a lawyer, but they also have the option to proceed without a lawyer, and we tell them what they should do to continue bringing their car accident claim without a lawyer.

A nursing home in Carrollton has been sued for failing to maintain the health and safety standards required by Texas law, according to a lawsuit filed by the Texas Attorney General.

Specifically, the Texas Attorney General’s complaint alleges that Brookhaven Nursing Center’s failure to have backup safety measures and emergency response protocols was a contributing cause to the death of a patient who died of oxygen deprivation because the patient’s oxygen system shut down during a power outage.

It is a sad commentary that Texas now has to rely on the state to bring about justice because there are so few nursing home lawyers left in Texas.

Texas is a rare state that requires almost everyone – doctors (it is now dirt cheap because there are so few medical malpractice claims under Texas’ new Draconian law), building contractors, and motor vehicle drivers to have insurance. Lawyers are not required to have insurance. Texas lawyers oppose mandatory legal malpractice insurance. They are wrong in opposing legal malpractice insurance. These lawyers open the door to hypocrisy. Moreover, any Texas injury lawyer that does not have legal malpractice insurance is putting themselves and their clients at great risk.

The Dallas City Council voted 10-5 to tow the cars of drivers who cannot produce proof of car insurance after a traffic stop. The new car insurance law will take effect on January 1, 2009.

I’m pleased to see that Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle said police would use prudence in enforcing this law. For example, police would not tow a vehicle if towing would cause a family with children to be stranded at night on the side of a road.

I honestly do not know how I feel about this law but I’m having a hard time coming up with legitimate arguments against it. District 6 council member Steve Salazar, who is against the bill, does not provide me any help. He is quoted as saying, “I want my officers catching burglars, people committing assaults, people committing rapes, people committing murders. Our priority is fighting crime.”

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