Tribpedia: Texas Supreme Court

The Texas Supreme Court is the highest appellate court for civil litigation in Texas. Located in Austin, the panel consists of a chief justice and eight justices who are elected statewide to staggered six-year terms. The governor also has the authority to appoint justices temporarily to fill vacancies. Appointed justices, who must be confirmed by the Texas Senate, may serve ...

Schools and Taxes: The Next Big Thing

The primary elections come in less than five months. The general election is about a year away. When that's all out of the way, we'll all be talking about lawsuits — some that have been filed, some that will be filed later — on school finance and franchise taxes.

Texas Supreme Court justices listen to the State of the Judiciary speech on February 23, 2011.
Texas Supreme Court justices listen to the State of the Judiciary speech on February 23, 2011.

Court Hears Challenge to State Business Tax

A successful challenge to the state's primary business tax would throw lawmakers into special session to try to find enough money to pay for public schools, a lawyer for the state told the Texas Supreme Court today.

Former Texas Tech football coach, Mike Leach - September 15, 2011.
Former Texas Tech football coach, Mike Leach - September 15, 2011.

Mike Leach: The TT Interview

The former Texas Tech football coach on his pending lawsuit against the university, how the state's doing at educating student athletes and what happens if the Big 12 falls apart.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett (center with glasses) at the State of the Judiciary speech in the House chamber on February 23, 2011.
Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett (center with glasses) at the State of the Judiciary speech in the House chamber on February 23, 2011.

Smith Eyes a Return

Austin lawyer and anti-affirmative-action advocate Steven Wayne Smith is planning a return to the Texas Supreme Court.

State Rep. Brandon Creighton (r), R-Conroe, talks to State Rep. Dan Branch before laying out HB274 on May 9, 2011.
State Rep. Brandon Creighton (r), R-Conroe, talks to State Rep. Dan Branch before laying out HB274 on May 9, 2011.

Senate Approves Loser-Pays Bill

The Senate unanimously passed a major tort reform bill today that would allow courts to grant attorneys' fees to prevailing parties under certain circumstances.

A photograph of Marcos Guerra at the gravesite in San Benito, Texas.
A photograph of Marcos Guerra at the gravesite in San Benito, Texas.

Grave Mismanagement?

In October 2001, Marcos Guerra’s wife and three daughters laid him to rest at the cemetery in San Benito where members of his family had been buried for three decades. Almost four years later, they were at his graveside again, burying him a second time, after the cemetery moved his body without their permission and exhumed his remains. Now the family’s legal battle with one of the largest funeral services providers in North America, which has faced class-action lawsuits in several states, has reached the Texas Supreme Court — and is raising questions about the state’s regulation of after-life care.

A voter casts a ballot in Travis County on November 2, 2010.
A voter casts a ballot in Travis County on November 2, 2010.

Election Night 2010: The Liveblog

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The Tribune's crack reporting staff — in Houston, Buda and other political hotspots — will be posting the latest news and spin the minute the polls close. Check back and refresh often for updates and photos from the field.

Pay to Win

If you're lucky enough to win the lottery, you can cash in not just some but all of your future payouts for a lump sum. The Texas Supreme Court last week invalidated a state law that prohibited winners from selling their final two payments to finance companies offering cash now, often at a steep price.

Bed-Mal

Is a hospital bed an integral part of medical care? As a federal judge considers the constitutionality of Texas’ 2003 medical malpractice reform — and Gov. Rick Perry campaigns for more lawsuit restrictions — the state Supreme Court has ruled that hospital injuries seemingly unrelated to doctor error can fall under Texas’ stringent medical malpractice caps. Some legal observers say the decision is a perversion of legislative intent, but tort reform advocates contend the high court simply closed a huge loophole in liability reforms.

A joint meeting between the House Elections and Judiciary committees on Aug. 26, 2010
A joint meeting between the House Elections and Judiciary committees on Aug. 26, 2010

You Be the Judge

Do two recent U.S. Supreme Court opinions have the far-reaching effects on Texas judicial elections that some in our legal community fear? Or do the state's current campaign finance laws adequately address the issues presented by both cases?