Texas Trial Lawyers Association

This service sponsored exclusively by The James Street Group

  December 2, 2013

Like TTLA on FacebookFollow TTLA on Twitter



List Servers


Online CLE

Submit an Article



Upcoming Online CLE


ETHICS -- Emerging Issues


Preparing a Plaintiff for Trial Testimony


ERISA Subrogation


CMS Jumps Into the Liability Arena: Addressing Medicare Secondary Payer Compliance in Liability Settlements


Broker Busting "B.A.S.I.C.'s"




Annual Meeting & Advanced PI CLE December 5-6, Four Seasons, Austin

Don't miss this chance to attend the best Advanced PI CLE in Texas! TTLA's year-end event has been streamlined and we're now offering a one-day Advanced PI CLE, along with the Annual Membership & Board Meeting, President's Luncheon featuring guest speaker Evan Smith (Editor-in-Chief and CEO of the Texas Tribune), and a spectacular Holiday Party with dinner and dancing to the truly Texan sound of Joe Ely. Click on the headline to learn more & register.  





Class-Action Suit Over NHL Head Injuries

spacer image

Ten former NHL hockey players have filed a class-action lawsuit alleging that "the league was negligent in withholding and misrepresenting information about the consequences of repeated blows to the head, contributing to players' brain injuries and neurological disorders." The lawsuit, which was filed on Monday, says that the league did not heed medical research on head injuries and delayed promoting players' safety. The lawsuit seeks compensatory and punitive damages and a court-supervised, league-funded medical monitoring program to diagnose and treat head injuries.
Helene Elliott, LA Times 11/25/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: LA Times    


Abused Girls File Lawsuit Against DSHS

spacer image

Two Washington girls have filed a lawsuit which alleges that the state's Department of Social and Health Services ignored reports that their mother was abusing them. The lawsuit alleges that the department received numerous complaints of the mother's poor treatment of the daughters, but "negligently, carelessly and unlawfully failed" to take action. The woman was convicted in 2009 after a court found that one of her daughters was forced to sleep outside, denied food and made to perform difficult chores. The lawsuit seeks an unspecified amount of monetary compensation for the girls.
Brian M. Rosenthal, Seattle Times 11/26/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Seattle Times    


Los Angeles Firefighter Awarded $1.1M in Discrimination Suit

spacer image

A Los Angeles firefighter has been awarded $1.1 million by a jury that ruled he was discriminated against during his nearly three-decade career. The lawsuit alleged that the plaintiff, who is black, was "subjected to racial slurs and jokes and that his supervisors falsified his performance evaluations, leading to suspensions and reprimands." The jury ruled in favor of the plaintiff's claims of discrimination, harassment and retaliation in the Los Angeles Fire Department six years after the plaintiff lost his first trial.
Wire Report, The Sacramento Bee 11/25/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: The Sacramento Bee    


Two Lawsuits Filed Over Contamination by Glass Plant

spacer image

Two federal lawsuits have been filed against a glass-manufacturing plant in Danville, Kentucky over hazardous substances on the property which endangered the health of employees. According to the lawsuit, workers were exposed to an increased risk of various cancers, kidney failure, damage to the central nervous system and other health problems. The hazardous waste dumped at the facility contaminated a five-mile radius area around the plant. The suits were filed on behalf of nearby residents and one worker at the plant. Both of the lawsuits seek class-action status.
Bill Estep, Lexington Herald-Leader 11/28/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Lexington Herald-Leader    


Christian Sports Camp Faces Two Sex Abuse Lawsuits

spacer image

A Christian sports camp located in Branson, Missouri is facing two lawsuits over the sexual abuse of campers by a former director. One of the lawsuits alleges that the former director sexually abused a male camper from 2000 to 2005, starting when the boy was 13. The other suit alleges that he sexually abused a camper from 2001 to 2007, beginning when the boy was only 10. Two similar lawsuits were settled earlier in the year. The man, now 38, is currently in jail serving two life sentences plus 30 years.
Judy L. Thomas, Kansas City Star 12/01/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Kansas City Star    


$11 Mil. Verdict Awarded in Topamax Birth Defect Case

spacer image

An $11 million verdict has been awarded to the parents of a child born with congenital defects due to an anticonvulsant drug his mother took during pregnancy. Stanley Thompson, director of the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas' Complex Litigation Center, said that out of the 132 Topamax mass tort cases currently under way, Powell v. Janssen Pharmaceuticals was the second to render a verdict. The jury in Powell returned an $11 million verdict to Haley Powell and Michael Gurley, the parents of Brayden Gurley, on Nov. 18 in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. The verdict was divided into $335,000 for future health care expenses and $10.6 million for non-economic loss
P.J. D'Annunzio , The Legal Intelligencer 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: The Legal Intelligencer    


NH Hospital Worker to be Sentenced

spacer image

A traveling medical technician who infected dozens of patients in multiple states with hepatitis C through tainted syringes was due to find out Monday how many decades he'll spend in a New Hampshire prison. David Kwiatkowski, 34, worked as a cardiac technologist in 18 hospitals in seven states before being hired at New Hampshire's Exeter Hospital in 2011, moving from job to job despite being fired at least four times over allegations of drug use and theft. Since his arrest last year, 46 people in four states have been diagnosed with the same strain of hepatitis C he carries.
HOLLY RAMER, AP, Star Tribune-South Metro 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Star Tribune-South Metro    


Ex-BP Engineer Who Deleted Texts Heads to Trial

spacer image

A jury is set to hear the Justice Department's case against a former BP employee accused of trying to stymie the federal investigation.Kurt Mix, who was a drilling engineer for BP, possibly faces a prison sentence if convicted of charges he deliberately deleted text messages and voicemails about the company's response to its massive 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
MICHAEL KUNZELMAN, AP, Houston Chronicle 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Houston Chronicle    


Environmental Groups Plan Lawsuit Against Pork Producer

spacer image

A coalition of state and national environmental groups has notified Illinois-based pork producers, The Maschhoffs, it intends to file a lawsuit against the company over repeated hog manure spills into Iowa waterways.
Donnelle Eller, DesMoines Register 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: DesMoines Register    


Lawsuit Over Snow-Grooming Accident Resolved

spacer image

A lawsuit against a Michigan ski resort over a snow-grooming accident which injured a boy has been resolved before trial. The boy involved in the accident was visiting from Canada in January 2008 on a school trip. He was run over by a snow-grooming machine, became entangled and was dragged. The details of the resolution were not released; however, an attorney for the plaintiff said that the lawsuit was resolved to the satisfaction of both parties.
Wire Report, Kansas City Star 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Kansas City Star    


Texas Supreme Court to Ring in New Year With Two Arbitration Cases

spacer image

The Texas Supreme Court will hear a pair of cases that present significant questions for the beginning and the end of the arbitration process. Those include whether an "unconscionable attorney fees" provision voids an arbitration agreement and what parties must do to vacate an arbitration award for alleged evident partiality. Those issues arise in Venture Cotton Cooperative and Noble Americas Corp. v. Shelby Alan Freeman and Ponderosa Pine Energy LLC v. Tenaska Energy Inc., on which the high court granted review Nov. 22.
John Council, Texas Lawyer 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Texas Lawyer    





Superfund Cleanup to Move at Nature's Pace

spacer image

For nearly 30 years, federal regulators have tried to remove hazardous liquids from groundwater beneath one of Houston's most polluted places. It didn't work, and they're on the verge of giving up and relying on nature to contain the pollution. Moving forward, the EPA would monitor two underground plumes of causing-cancer creosote and other contaminants to ensure the pollution does not move from the Cavalcade Street site into nearby neighborhoods. But the agency would leave it to nature to reduce the volume and toxicity of the liquids over time. The new course, which the EPA proposed recently, reflects the mind-numbing challenges in cleaning up the 1,313 heavily contaminated Superfund sites across the country, including 13 in Harris County.
Matthew Tresaugue, Houston Chronicle 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Houston Chronicle    


North TX Quakes Prompt Calls for Inquiry

spacer image

A flurry of more than 20 earthquakes this month in North Texas has prompted rumblings from residents who want an investigation into whether natural-gas drilling might be their cause. The 22 quakes in November have ranged from a magnitude of about 2.0 to 3.6, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. A quake of magnitude 2.5 to 3 is the smallest generally felt by people. On Monday, the Parker County Commissioners Court agreed to send a letter seeking an investigation into the recent earthquakes to the Texas Railroad Commission, which oversees water disposal wells, county spokesman Joel Kertok said.
EVA-MARIE AYALA , The Dallas Morning News 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: The Dallas Morning News    


Yellow Cab May be in Violation of State Passenger Safety Requirement

spacer image

Public records show that Yellow Cab may be in violation of a statewide passenger safety requirement that mandates taxi companies carry $750,000 in insurance when transporting Medicaid patients. Records show the company does not meet that requirement. The state of Texas is now investigating News 8’s findings to determine if Yellow Cab is in compliance with insurance standards for a contract that’s paid the taxi company nearly $82 million over a four-and-a-half year period. This follows a series of reports, from News 8 that the city of Dallas has given Yellow special treatment for 12 years, allowing the taxi company to operate without sufficient insurance intended to ensure the safety of passengers.
DAVID SCHECHTER, 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article:    


Litigators Eye AAA Rules Allowing Appeal of Arbitral Decisions

spacer image

For the first time, parties in a dispute before the American Arbitration Association (AAA) can opt for built-in appellate review of arbitral awards. But reception to the new AAA appellate rules, which became effective on Nov. 1, has been mixed among Texas litigators.
John Council , Texas Lawyer 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Texas Lawyer    





Despite Changes, Nurses Push for More Independence

spacer image

In the 2013 legislative session, Texas lawmakers loosened supervision requirements and broadened the drug-prescribing authority for mid-level health care practitioners like advanced practice nurses and physician assistants. The changes have cut operating costs and improved workflow in nurse-managed clinics. But some nurse practitioners argue lawmakers should have allowed them to practice independently, saying they could fill a need for primary care. And with recruitment campaigns by states like New Mexico, which has more lenient laws, some see an incentive to leave the state.
Becca Aaronson, Texas Tribune 12/02/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Texas Tribune    


Class Action



Class-Action Lawsuit Against Lumber Liquidators

spacer image

A Lumber Liquidators shareholder has filed a class-action lawsuit "alleging that company executives made false and misleading statements about the sourcing of its wood products." The lumber company has been under federal investigation on suspicion of importing illegally logged wood from Russia as well as importing wood with high levels of formaldehyde. News of the federal investigation being made public and the serving of search warrants caused the company's stock prices to plunge. The lawsuit seeks damages for unspecified losses.
Tim McGlone, Virginian Pilot 12/01/2013   Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedIn Icon

Read Article: Virginian Pilot    

Like TTLA on FacebookFollow TTLA on Twitter