Articles Posted in Texas

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.

In Providence Health Center v. Dowell, the Texas Supreme Court found against the Plaintiffs who sought to recover in a medical malpractice case for their son’s suicide.

The Texas high court, in an opinion by written by Justice Hecht, based its ruling on several factors, most notably appears to be the fact that there was no expert testimony to a reasonable degree of medical probability that had the young man been hospitalized, that his death could have been prevented. When asked if hospitalization would have prevented the suicide, the expert only answered that the young man “would have improved” and been at a “lower risk” of suicide when he left the hospital.

The majority opinion also ruled that there was no evidence that the young man would have consented to hospitalization. A dissenting opinion by supported by three justices took exception to the notion that plaintiffs should be required to prove that the patient would have consented to provide a new and insurmountable hurdle in suicide cases.

On Friday, a Dallas County jury awarded $87 million to a man who was partially paralyzed in a moving-truck accident with $87 million in his lawsuit against U-Haul.

Plaintiff’s lawyer Ted Lyon told reporters after the verdict that U-Haul had faulty emergency brake and worn down gears. The Plaintiff rented a U-Haul to help his daughter move. When he got out of the truck, it started rolling backwards and knocked him down. Now the formerly active retiree cannot walk and requires around-the-clock care.

In litigation that is a byproduct of the Ford Explorer rollover lawsuits, Ford Explorer owners will be “compensated” in a settlement because of the loss of value of the Explorer because of the perceived rollover danger. This settlement covers about 800,000 people who purchased Explorers in California, Connecticut, Illinois and Texas.

Unfortunately, the only people who will get a significant recovery will be the lawyers who brought these claims. Explorer owners will only be eligible for vouchers for $300 to purchase new vehicles Ford or Lincoln Mercury vehicles (or $500 off the Ford Explorer). Practically, the car dealers will just negotiate a higher sales price on the car the sale of the car, reducing the list price less than they otherwise would.

Accordingly, this settlement is worthless to everyone except for the lawyers bringing these claims. The frustrating thing about this is that 800,000 people see this settlement and think, “Geez, what a scam, the only people that really profit from this are the lawyers.” For personal injury victims and their lawyers, this does not help when one of these 800,000 people shows up on a jury.

Jeremy Roebuck of The Monitor in South Texas writes an interesting article about, unlike Friday’s blog post, Allstate going on the offensive against abuses in the personal injury system.

In this case, Allstate has brought a fraud lawsuit against a group of Rio Grande Valley chiropractic clinics and their lawyers, claiming that they improperly recruited personal injury victims, suggested patients undergo unnecessary treatments, and then persuaded their patients to file personal injury lawsuits against Allstate.

Allstate alleges the clinics, Chiropractic Strategies, has telemarketers that encourage people to visit their clinics for a free evaluation. Once there, Allstate claims they were are diagnosed with injuries they did not have and overtreated for the injuries they did have. The article does not say but I’m assuming they are calling people who have been in auto accidents based on looking at police reports or some other means to find injury victims.

Eleven plaintiffs, including former Dallas Cowboy Ron Springs, filed a class-action lawsuit yesterday challenging the Texas Medical Malpractice and Tort Reform Act as unconstitutional.

I suspect this argument will fail miserably. I think the effort to solve the medical malpractice cap problem in Texas is through the Texas Legislature. Hopefully, the Texas Trial Lawyers Association is marshaling a quality effort to convince the Texas Legislature that they have gone down a path that has seriously compromised the basic rights of people who have been seriously injured as the result of medical malpractice in Texas.

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