Texas Trial Lawyers Association

This service sponsored by Trialsmith

  May 27, 2014

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Upcoming Online CLE


How to Use Social Media in Your Case


How to be Successful At Obtaining and Maximizing Non-Economic Damages


Medicare Set Asides in General Liability and Medical Malpractice Cases


Da Vinci Robot Litigation


Neuropsychological Diagnosis in Mild Traumatic Brain Injury


The Top 10 Rules of Jury Selection


How to Handle a Class Action Case


Effective Use of Powerpoint Presentations in Trial



Good Laws and Good Lawyers.

“There’s been a lot of talk about the Texas Trial Lawyers Association’s mission lately, with several iterations of lengthy wording and lofty statements. Syntax, length and style aside, we believe TTLA’s mission is best stated as Good Laws and Good Lawyers: standing up for Good Laws in the legislative and public arena and working together to continue being the Good Lawyers our clients deserve.” Mike Guajardo, TTLA President  



COLLABORATE! Join TTLA President Mike Guajardo at TTLA’s 2014 Annual Conference in Austin, June 11-13. ALL MEMBERS are invited and encouraged to attend a very important meeting of our Board of Directors Meeting on June 12th. In addition, the CLE Committee has once again planned three dynamic programs. We’ll start things off with The Jury Bias Model™ - From Car Wrecks to the Complex Case presented by Greg Cusimano and David Wenner on June 11th, followed by a ½-day CLE on June 12th with some of TTLA’s brightest stars sharing their best tips. The conference will wrap up with our Annual Med Mal program with all the latest updates and insights, before closing with an evening of Magic and Music. Click here to see all we have planned for you! Two days. Three great seminars. TTLA’s 2014 Annual Conference. Click on the headline for more information and to register.  


The Texas Tribune & Oyez® to Launch Site for Texas High Courts

"Texas will soon benefit from an online archive for its two highest courts, launched through a partnership between The Texas Tribune and Oyez®, a free law project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The site will go live in late summer 2014 and offer case summaries written for a non-legal audience. The multimedia resource will include opinions, transcript-synchronized videos of oral arguments, justice biographies and decision information." Click on the headline to learn more.  





Final Word on U.S. Law Isn’t: Supreme Court Keeps Editing

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The Supreme Court has been quietly revising its decisions years after they were issued, altering the law of the land without public notice. The revisions include “truly substantive changes in factual statements and legal reasoning,” said Richard J. Lazarus, a law professor at Harvard and the author of a new study examining the phenomenon. But most changes are neither prompt nor publicized, and the court’s secretive editing process has led judges and law professors astray, causing them to rely on passages that were later scrubbed from the official record. The widening public access to online versions of the court’s decisions, some of which do not reflect the final wording, has made the longstanding problem more pronounced.
ADAM LIPTAK, The New York Times 05/27/2014   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

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Black Boxes for Cars Raise Privacy Concerns

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Welcome to the 21st century, when your vehicle may be keeping track of many aspects of your driving and, whether you like it or not, that information may be used against you. Experts say, the "event data recorders" are here to stay. The information they provide about speed, acceleration, braking and impact is being used in a growing number of court cases. Data recorders were not initially installed in cars, SUVs and trucks to help law enforcement solve crimes. In use since the mid-1970s, they were designed to collect data to help manufacturers defend product liability claims, said Richard R. Ruth, a retired Ford engineer who runs a consulting business that provides expertise in automotive restraint systems and event data recorders.
Tim Evans, The Indianapolis Star , USA Today 05/27/2014   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

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Man Accused of Racist Comment on Receipt Files Suit

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A Tennessee man who was accused of leaving a racist comment on a receipt has filed a lawsuit against the Red Lobster chain and the waitress who waited on him at the restaurant. The plaintiff was accused of leaving no tip and writing a racial slur on the receipt at a restaurant location last year after his waitress posted a photo of his receipt on her Facebook page. According to the plaintiff, he did not leave a tip because it was a pick-up order and he was not responsible for the racial slur. The $1 million lawsuit contends that suffered damage to his reputation when the waitress posted a photo with his name on the receipt online.
Meg Wagner, New York Daily News 05/24/2014   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

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N.M. Woman Sues Over Misdiagnosed Cancer

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A New Mexico woman has filed a lawsuit alleging that her doctor's negligence led to a possibly cancerous tumor being left undetected and untreated for years. In 2007, a mammogram detected a nickel-sized calcification in one of her breasts, but a doctor determined that it was benign. In 2009, 2010, and 2011, the plaintiff was told the same thing by other doctors. In 2012, after being selected for a random review, the woman's mass was very large and a biopsy showed it was cancer. The state Medical Review Commission voted in April and determined that the plaintiff was a victim of professional negligence.
Kayla Ayres, KRQE News 13 05/25/2014   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

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Tarrant Jury Awards $20,000 to Homeowners in Nuisance Suit Against Chesapeake

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In November 2011, Sam Crowder sued Chesapeake Operating, complaining that the noise, odors and truck traffic from the well site were a nuisance. And on Friday, a Tarrant County jury agreed, awarding him $20,000 in damages, a fraction of the approximately $108,000 he had sought. The finding of a private nuisance means the six-person jury concluded that the well site substantially interfered with the Crowders’ ability to enjoy their property. The jury found that Chesapeake intentionally created a nuisance with its well site, and that the facility was abnormal and out of place for its environment. Other homeowners in the neighborhood who were called as witnesses in the case likewise complained of its presence. Two of the witnesses have also sued Chesapeake.
Jim Fuquay, Star Telegram 05/27/2014   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

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Couple Awarded $5M After Botched Midwife Delivery


A couple has been awarded $5 million in a lawsuit against the midwife in charge of their son's birth. Ingham County Circuit Judge Clinton Canady has ordered former nurse midwife Clarice Winkler to pay Sara and Jarad Snyder of DeWitt, Mich., damages for the death of their son, Magnus, in 2011. It's unlikely the Snyders will collect any money because Winkler did not carry malpractice insurance, said the couple's attorney and he called the judge's ruling a hollow victory because it was a default judgment.
Louise Knott Ahern, Lansing State (Mich.) Journal , USA Today  05/27/2014  Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn icon

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Wells Fargo Settles Remaining 'Robo-Signing' Mortgage Litigation

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Wells Fargo & Co. has agreed to spend $67 million on mortgage-related issues to settle remaining civil litigation stemming from the so-called robo-signing debacle. Under the terms released Friday, the San Francisco bank will use the money on down-payment assistance, counseling for troubled homeowners and unifying the customer-service systems that several of its home-lending arms had employed.
E. Scott Reckard, LA Times 05/27/2014   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

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13 Deaths, Untold Heartache, From G.M. Defect

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Ever since G.M. first began recalling 2.6 million small cars with the defective ignition switch in February, the company has refused to disclose the names of the victims or details of the accidents — even to some survivors of the crashes and relatives of the dead. G.M. also has not shared its interpretation of the data from the so-called black boxes that helped the automaker identify the 13 deaths. Some law enforcement officials say the information the automaker withheld might have changed their investigations. In all, G.M. now acknowledges that the defective ignition switch contributed to at least 47 accidents (a recent revision from its earlier tally of 32), including those that caused the 13 deaths.
REBECCA R. RUIZ, DANIELLE IVORY and HILARY STOUT, The New York Times 05/27/2014   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

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