Texas

  • August 29, 2014

    Ex-Arthrocare CEO Gets 20 Years In $958M Fraud Case

    A Texas federal judge on Friday sentenced the former CEO of Arthrocare Corp. to 20 years in prison and the company's ex-CFO to 10 years after they were convicted of perpetrating a securities fraud that the government is now measuring at up to $958.4 million, according to authorities.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas High Court Won't Overturn Fraudster's Disbarment

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday again rejected a bid by a disbarred lawyer to reinstate his law license after he was convicted in a fraud scheme involving a medical device company and sentenced to 20 years in prison.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas Federal Judge Strikes Down State Abortion Restrictions

    A Texas federal judge deemed unconstitutional two major state abortion restrictions Friday, just days before one was scheduled to take effect, saying that the laws place undue hardships on women seeking abortions and prompting the state to immediately appeal.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas High Court To Let Jury Resolve Enbridge Pipe Damages

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday ruled that a jury should determine whether the damage to a couple’s property by Enbridge Pipelines East Texas LP is temporary or permanent and then calculate damages for the couple based on that finding, according to a decision that reversed the appellate court’s finding.

  • August 29, 2014

    Exxon Ruling Gives Employers More Leeway In Bonus Plans

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday upheld an Exxon Mobil Corp. plan that stripped a top executive of $5 million in nonvested stock rights when he joined a rival energy firm, paving the way for more employers to use incentive plans to keep top talent in place without running afoul of the state's noncompete laws.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas Supreme Court Clarifies Implied Easement In Land Row

    The Texas Supreme Court said Friday that a dispute over the use of a 50-plus-year-old access road that crosses another party’s property must be pursued based on implied easement by necessity — not by prior use — reversing the decisions of a trial and appeals court.

  • August 29, 2014

    Legal Recruiter Can Seek Injunction To Block Web Defamation

    The Texas Supreme Court said Friday that a legal recruiter’s former employer can be forced to remove allegedly defamatory Internet postings accusing him of bribing an associate at K&L Gates LLP, but the company cannot be prohibited from making similar statements in the future.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas Justices Say Jury Charge Objections Can Be Untimely

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday held that courts may set deadlines for objections to jury instructions, affirming a lower court’s order that found that a dredging vessel owner's objection to a jury instruction in a dispute over a worker's injury was untimely.

  • August 29, 2014

    Ford, Affinity Pare Judge-Skewered Objections In Patent Row

    Ford Motor Co. and Affinity Labs Inc. issued a joint filing on Friday showing which evidence each doesn’t want the other to present in their dispute over sound-system patents, reconciling somewhat after a Texas federal judge demolished the “smorgasbord of objections” sent to the court.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas Can't Grab Uncollected Settlement Funds, Court Says

    Texas' high court said Friday that the state is not entitled to seize uncollected class action settlement funds that are earmarked for charities in a case involving a homebuilder that settled litigation accusing it of failing to obtain insurance coverage for subcontractors.

  • August 29, 2014

    Oil Cleanup Is Covered Despite Settlement, Texas Court Says

    A Texas appeals court ruled Friday that Plantation Pipe Line Co. didn’t forfeit excess coverage purchased from Highlands Insurance Co. by settling coverage claims stemming from a 1975 oil leak against its lower-level insurers for less than the full limits of those policies, reversing a lower court decision.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas Justices Revive Builder's $20M Suit Over Project Delays

    A divided Texas Supreme Court said Friday that Zachry Construction Corp. can pursue the majority of some $20 million in losses the company says were caused by project-delaying revisions the Port of Houston Authority made to a wharf construction deal.

  • August 29, 2014

    Google Needn't Reveal Blogger's Identity: Texas High Court

    A divided Texas Supreme Court on Friday freed Google Inc. from having to unmask an anonymous blogger accused of defaming The Reynolds & Reynolds Co., finding that a lower court lacks personal jurisdiction over the blogger and can't order presuit discovery.

  • August 29, 2014

    The 5 Most Fearsome EEOC Regional Offices

    Employers should beware of aggressive U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission regional offices that are leading the agency's efforts to limit the use of criminal background checks, eradicate pregnancy discrimination and tackle other issues, attorneys say. Here's a look at five EEOC district offices on the leading edge of enforcement efforts.

  • August 29, 2014

    Texas Justices Say Farmers Vacancy Clause Precludes Payout

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday affirmed a ruling that Farmers Insurance Exchange isn't required to cover a homeowner whose vacant property was destroyed by a fire in a neighboring home, finding the policy suspended coverage because the house was vacant. 

  • August 28, 2014

    BP Deal Over Texas Hydrogen Sulfide Leak Undone On Appeal

    A Texas appeals court Thursday reversed a trial court's decision enforcing a settlement between BP Products North America Inc. and plaintiffs allegedly injured by a BP plant's hydrogen sulfide release, some of whom objected to the deal because it precluded additional claims.

  • August 28, 2014

    GeoTag Sues Atty For Assigning Patent Rights To Himself

    GeoTag Inc. filed a malpractice suit against its former attorney and prospective business partner Raj Abhyanker in Texas federal court Wednesday, alleging he fraudulently assigned himself an ownership stake in three patents related to his social networking site.

  • August 28, 2014

    Dallas Tech Execs To Pay SEC $675K For Revenue Inflation

    Two executives at a Dallas-based information technology company have agreed to pay the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission $675,000 to settle claims they mischaracterized a deal with an equipment manufacturer in order to inflate their company’s reported revenue, the SEC said Thursday.

  • August 28, 2014

    Texas Judge Finds School Tax System Still Unconstitutional

    A Texas state judge on Thursday ruled for the second time that the state unevenly pays for its school system with an unconstitutional statewide property tax, echoing his February 2013 decision despite the subsequent passage of state laws restoring some funding cuts.

  • August 28, 2014

    Tesco Bid For Rig Accident Coverage Revived In Texas Court

    A Texas appeals court ruled on Thursday that Texas law applies in a suit brought by oilfield services provider Tesco Corp. against insurer Steadfast Insurance Co. after Steadfast refused to cover a $1.5 million punitive damages verdict over a Colorado drilling rig accident, reversing the insurer's summary judgment win. 

Expert Analysis

  • Inside The 3 Busiest Patent Litigation Forums

    Daniel Winston

    Knowing how the Eastern District of Texas, the Northern District of California, and the District of Delaware vary in case scheduling and stay practices will help practitioners determine if filing a petition for inter partes review or covered business method review is the right strategy, say Daniel Winston and Robert Shames of Choate Hall & Stewart LLP.

  • Monitoring Employees: How Far Can Employers Go?

    Michael V. Abcarian

    It is increasingly important for employers to know their legal limits when monitoring employee conduct since employees may question the legality of employer's monitoring their off-site conduct, especially when they are off-duty, says Michael Abcarian of Fisher & Phillips LLP.

  • NY Joins Texas In The Broad Use Of Appraisal

    Steven J. Badger

    New York's scope of appraisal after a recent change in state insurance law appears to support an appraisal process even broader than Texas' after that state's high court decided State Farm Lloyds v. Johnson, says Steven Badger of Zelle Hofmann Voelbel & Mason LLP.

  • Mixed Feelings In Texas About ALI's Negligence Approach

    Kelly J. Kirkland

    Just when we thought the Supreme Court of Texas wants nothing to do with the American Law Institute’s latest efforts to restate the law of negligence, two recent decisions indicate it actually has mixed feelings, in part because of its profound distrust of juries, says Kelly Kirkland of Fulkerson & Lotz LLP.

  • The 8 Gotchas Of Technology Contracting: Part 2

     Craig Auge

    Contracts for providing and obtaining technology establish important, often long-term relationships. When they involve mission-critical products and services, the impact of a flawed contract can be devastating, says Craig Auge of Vorys Sater Seymour and Pease LLP.

  • The 8 Gotchas Of Technology Contracting: Part 1

    Craig Auge

    Every business runs at least in part on technology — and, when contracting for technology products and services, the “gotchas” don’t discriminate based on size or industry. All parties can benefit from avoiding these situations, says Craig Auge of Vorys Sater Seymour and Pease LLP.

  • Texas Agrees, 'I Agree' Clause Can Mandate Arbitration

    Richard Raysman

    If a Texas appellate court had found the particular clauses of intent within a contractual agreement between independent representatives and their employer in Momentis U.S. Corp. v. Weisfeld insufficient for the purposes of contract formation then it would likely have undone the balance of online contracts, says Richard Raysman of Holland & Knight LLP.

  • Solvency Drives Dismissal Of Fraudulent Transfer Suit

    Michael L. Cook

    In U.S. Bank National Association v. Verizon Communications, the Fifth Circuit found competing valuations helpful in dismissing a litigation trustee’s $2.5 billion fraudulent transfer suit against a Chapter 11 debtor’s corporate parent. An adversarial system, therefore, not ideology, worked for the defendants, says Michael Cook of Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP.

  • Texas' Progressive Claims Syndrome Is Treatable

    Lindsey P. Bruning

    The recent case of USAA Texas Lloyd’s Co. v. Menchaca exemplifies a prevalent concern in Texas first-party property insurance claims today — the “Progressive Claim Syndrome” — as well as its most effective treatment, says Lindsey Bruning of Zelle Hofmann Voelbel & Mason LLP.

  • An In-House Lawyer's Top 10 Tips For Outside Counsel

    Francis M. Drelling

    To this day, I have yet to see a litigation hold letter that was written by someone who understands the realities of how a business is actually run. In-house counsel cannot issue decrees to business units that read like they are issued by the king to his subjects, says Francis Drelling, in-house counsel at Specialty Restaurants Corp.