When has a trial lawyer represented his client too zealously?
The Texas Supreme Court heard arguments Friday here in Fort Worth in the nationally-watched sanctions case of Brewer v. Lennox Hearth Products. There was a packed courtroom and an overflow crowd at Texas A&M Law School.
The Court’s decision will set boundaries on just how far a lawyer can go to win a trial. And making the hearing even more sensational, the attorney in question, William Brewer III of Dallas and New York City, has often been in the headlines, most recently while representing the National Rifle Association.
New decision is a rare victory for plaintiffs
If you are injured in a crash caused by someone driving while intoxicated, file a lawsuit, and receive a punitive damages award from a jury, will you be paid? A surprising federal court ruling from the country’s most conservative federal appellate court of the 13 circuits decisively answered that question.
Background: Carlos Sanchez got drunk at a bar in San Antonio, ran a red light, and slammed into this car driven by Richard Frederking in 2004. Sanchez pled guilty to DWI.
The governor’s final day to sign or veto bills passed by the state legislature was Sunday. Fortunately, the right of Texans to access the courts and recover damages was not adversely affected. Of the 7,500 bills introduced and 1,400 passed, here are several that affect the car and truck crash cases we have specialized in for almost 40 years at Berenson Injury Law.
HB 1693 AFFIDAVITS TO PROVE MEDICAL RECORDS AND BILLS
The plaintiff must file his medical records and bills with affidavits proving that the service was reasonably priced and necessary and itemize how much of the bill was paid and how much is due. The new law accelerates the filing deadlines by requiring that affidavits be filed 90 or 120 days after the defendant’s answer is filed/experts deadline.
In an unanimous decision in Garcia v. City of Willis #17-0713, the high court dismissed a lawsuit Friday that would have eliminated the widely despised red light cameras in Texas. The plaintiff had filed a class action lawsuit to declare they were unconstitutional and sought to obtain a refund of the millions of dollars of fines Texas motorists have paid.
On procedural grounds, the Supreme Court found the plaintiff lacked standing, chose to pay his fine and avoid the required administrative hearing, and governmental immunity barred the reimbursement claim.
The decision follows other attempts to outlaw the cameras. For example, in February the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago called a similar argument “a dud” and noted that the advantages of the cameras outweighed other concerns.
Why we need medical bills mediation
Obviously no one ever plans to be in a car accident or have any kind of medical emergency. He certainly doesn’t think he will be rushed to an expensive hospital and charged enormous amounts by the ambulance, hospital, ER doctors, radiologists, and specialists.
Most people don’t have the ability to pay these bills and assume they will be paid quickly by the at-fault driver’s liability company and his own health insurance plan.
But the injured person won’t know until months later which charges, if any, were paid — assuming he was insured and met his annual deductible. Many are not paid by the health insurance company because a provider was out of the plan’s network or the hospital was is in but the doctor was out of network so the physician’s bill has to be paid in full.
If you have been injured in a car accident in Texas, you might want to familiarize yourself with basic Texas car accident laws. This will give you a better understanding of how to recover your financial damages and know what questions to ask a personal injury lawyer who can assist you.
Report the car or truck crash
For starters, Texas law has a requirement that drivers must call contact the police. Hopefully a law enforcement officer will write a Texas Peace Officer’s Crash Report (Form CR-3), which is required if any one reports being injured or there is damage to any vehicle more than $1,000.
People often confuse filing a personal injury claim with going to court. Most of the time, a personal injury settlement can be reached without ever filing a lawsuit. An agreement occurs when the two parties negotiate to reach a settlement amount that is reasonable. Sometimes the injured person attempts to handle the negotiation on his or her own. But they rarely get the best outcome when they handle the negotiations themselves. Insurance companies are known to use every trick in the book to take advantage of them.
Negotiating is a fine art that requires skill and experience. When it is used to settle something as important as a personal injury claim, it is best left to a trained professional. The process follows a fairly structured process that needs to be understand in-depth. There are many ways to do the case substantial harm. A personal injury victim only has one chance to get a fair settlement. He cannot afford to gamble on his own capabilities.
Before you talk to anyone about your personal injury settlement, you should talk with an experienced personal injury attorney who knows your rights. The first meeting is free and will be invaluable.
Many of us use Lyft and Uber to get around town. But how safe are we? You need to know about these recent horrifying crimes their drivers committed on passengers:
- An Uber driver was caught after sexually assaulting a 77-year-old woman in Fort Worth;
- On Friday in Denver an Uber driver shot and killed his passenger. After firing ten .40 caliber bullets at him, the car veered off the road and crashed into a guard rail. The driver had a recent history of speeding and traffic violations;
- A few weeks ago we learned that over 100 Uber drivers had sexual assaulted or abused their passengers.
Yesterday, Uber once again promised its customers that it was working on making them safer.
Rather than rely on vague promises, here are seven good tips you can use to gauge your safety before you decide to get into an Uber of Lyft.