Friday, November 30, 2007

2007-11-30: Two Green Opinions and Two by the Chief Justice Jefferson

This week's crop of Texas Supreme Court opinions: Four signed opinions (2 by Chief Jefferson and 2 by Justice Green each) with three concurrences, and two per curiams - one of them explaining why mandamus relief should be denied on a recusal issue. (Texas appeals courts rarely elaborate on the reasons mandamus is denied. Some justice deny petitions summarily in one-sentence "opinions" and even sign their names as "opinion authors", thus inflating their "signed opinions" stats, - one measure of appellate judge productivity)

GOVERNMENT ENTITIES, JURISDICTION, DECLARATORY JUDGMENT

Houston Municipal Employees Pension System v. Ferrell, No. 05-0587 (Tex. Nov. 30, 2007)(Green)(public employment, retirement plans, UDJA, jurisdiction, nonsuit)
HOUSTON MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES PENSION SYSTEM v. CRAIG E. FERRELL, JR., ET AL.; from Harris County; 1st district (01-03-00925-CV, 177 S.W.3d 502, 05/20/05). Respondent Craig Ferrell Jr.'s request for non-suit without prejudice granted. The Court vacates in part and reverses in part the court of appeals' judgment and renders judgment. Justice Green delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Chief Justice Jefferson, Justice Hecht, Justice O'Neill, Justice Wainwright, Justice Brister, Justice Medina, and Justice Johnson joined. Justice Brister delivered a concurring opinion, in which Justice O'Neill joined. (Justice Willett not sitting)

GOVERNMENT ENTITY LAW, PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT, WHISTLEBLOWERS

Montgomery County v. Park, No. 05-1023 (Tex. Nov. 30, 2007)(Opinion by Chief Justice Jefferson)(public employment, governmental entities cases, WBA, Texas Whistleblower Act, adverse employment personnel action) MONTGOMERY COUNTY, TEXAS v. DAVID PARK; from Montgomery County; 10th district (10-04-00231-CV, ___ S.W.3d ___, 10/19/05). The Court reverses the court of appeals' judgment and renders judgment. Chief Justice Jefferson delivered the opinion of the Court.

HEALTH CARE LIABILITY CLAIMS (HCLC) EXPERT REPORT REQUIREMENT DEFICIENT REPORTS, INTERLOCUTORY APPEALS

Ogletree, MD v. Matthews, No. 06-0502 (Tex. Nov. 30, 2007)(Jefferson)(HCLC, medical malpractice cases, timely but deficient expert report, interlocutory appeal) JAN N. OGLETREE, M.D. AND HEART HOSPITAL OF AUSTIN v. NANCY KAY MATTHEWS AND LUANN MATTHEWS; from Travis County; 3rd district (03-05-00317-CV, 212 S.W.3d 331, 05/05/06)2 petitions. The Court affirms the court of appeals' judgment. Chief Justice Jefferson delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Justice Hecht, Justice O'Neill, Justice Wainwright, Justice Brister, Justice Medina, Justice Green, Justice Johnson, and Justice Willett joined.
Justice Willett delivered a concurring opinion.

INSURANCE RATE REGULATION, CLASS ACTIONS

Mid-Century Ins. Co. v. Ademaj, No. 05-0016 (Tex. Nov. 30, 2007)(Opinion by Justice Green) (insurance case law, rate regulation, billing of anti-theft fee)
MID-CENTURY INSURANCE COMPANY OF TEXAS AND TEXAS FARMERS INSURANCE COMPANY v. SHEFQET ADEMAJ; from Henderson County; 12th district (12-03-00028-CV, 202 S.W.3d 176, 11/24/04). The Court reverses the court of appeals' judgment and renders judgment. Justice Green delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Chief Justice Jefferson, Justice Wainwright, Justice Brister, Justice Johnson, and Justice Willett joined. Justice O'Neill delivered a concurring opinion, in which Justice Medina joined. (Justice Hecht not sitting)

CONSUMER LAW, CLASS ACTIONS, SUPREME DECERTIFICATION

Best Buy Co. v. Barrera, No. 07-0028 (Tex. Nov. 30, 2007)(per curiam)(consumer case law, class decertified)
BEST BUY CO. AND BEST BUY STORES, L.P. v. VELMA V. BARRERA, INDIVIDUALLY AND ON BEHALF OF OTHERS SIMILARLY SITUATED; from Nueces County; 13th district (13-05-00258-CV, 214 S.W.3d 66, 11/30/06). Pursuant to Texas Rule of Appellate Procedure 59.1, after granting the petition for review and without hearing oral argument, the Court reverses the court of appeals' judgment and remands the case to the trial court.

JUDICIAL INTEGRITY, RECUSAL OF JUDGES, ASSIGNMENT OF CASES

In re McKee, MD No. 06-0055 (Tex. Nov. 30, 2007)(per curiam)(ethics law, recusal of judge, administrative order)
THE FOLLOWING PETITIONS FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS ARE DENIED: 06-0055 IN RE EDGAR GEER MCKEE, M.D.; from Grayson County

1 comment:

Chief in Texarkana said...

"Texas appeals courts rarely elaborate on the reasons mandamus is denied." - We ALWAYS explain our reasons for granting or denying mandamus relief.