Latest News


Western District’s New Emergency COVID-19 Order Cancels Trials Through November 30th with One Big Exception

October 16th, 2020 By David L. Plaut

Chief Judge Orlando Garcia has issued a new emergency COVID-19 Order, dated October 14, 2020.  The new Order continues all civil and criminal trials through November 30, 2020.  Order at ¶1.  The Order indicates these trials are being continued, at least in part, because of a “reduced ability to obtain an adequate spectrum of jurors” and “due to reduced availability of attorneys and court staff to be present in the courtrooms” because of COVID-19 and “public health considerations.”  Id. at
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Texas Supreme Court Agrees to Hear UM/UIM Attorneys’ Fees Case

October 5th, 2020 By David L. Plaut

On Friday, October 2, 2020, the Texas Supreme Court granted Allstate’s Petition for Review in Cause No. 19-0885, Allstate Insurance Company v. Irwin, on appeal from the Fourteenth Court of Appeals.  The case addresses the question of whether policyholders can recover attorneys’ fees in uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) cases that are pled as  declaratory judgment actions.  The Supreme Court’s previous decisions in Brainard and Henson would appear to foreclose recovery of attorneys’ fees in the absence of an underlying judgment establishing the
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Breaking News on UM/UIM

August 31st, 2020 By Catherine Hanna

On Friday, the Texas Supreme Court set an underinsured motorist (UIM) mandamus case – Cause No. 19-0791, In re State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. and Terecina Shahan – for oral argument on December 2, 2020.  The case revisits an issue presented to the Court in Weber v. Progressive Cty. Mut. Ins. Co., 2018 W. 564001 (Tex. App. – Dallas 2018, pet. denied) on Petition for Review.   In Weber, the Dallas Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal of extracontractual UIM
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Welcome New Attorneys Ana and Erin to Hanna & Plaut

July 14th, 2020 By Catherine Hanna

We are thrilled to welcome Ana Navarette and Erin Holmes to the Hanna & Plaut family. Erin comes to us from Skelton & Woody where she represented insurance carriers and their insureds, primarily defending lawsuits arising from auto accidents involving claims of negligence, UIM coverage, breach of contract, DTPA, Texas Insurance Code, and bad faith.  Erin was awarded her law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School-Madison in 2002. She has been licensed to practice law in Texas since
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Texas Supreme Court finds for carriers in Air Ambulance decision.

July 6th, 2020 By Robert Josey

On June 26, 2020, in a 7/2 ruling, the Texas Supreme Court issued its decision in Texas Mutual Insurance Company v. PHI Air Ambulance, reversing the Austin Court of Appeals and holding that: (1) federal law does not pre-empt the Texas Department of Insurance – Division of Workers’ Compensation (the Division) from determining fair and reasonable rates for air ambulance services; and (2) federal law does not require the Division to mandate Carriers pay more than a fair and reasonable
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It’s A Round-Up, Y’all!

March 29th, 2020 By Lauren Burgess

Ed. Note: At Hanna & Plaut we encourage attorney involvement in practice organizations like the Texas Association of Defense Counsel. We’re also not ashamed to take advantage of the good work they do as part of their responsibilities. Today, we are pleased to present a case round-up that Lauren Burgess prepared as part of her role as a Director-at-Large for TADC. Alcala v. Republic Lloyds, No. 13-18-00026-CV, 2020 WL 830840 (Tex. App.–Corpus Christi Feb. 20, 2020) Holding: Timely payment of
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Lauren Burgess Appointed as Director-at-Large for TADC

December 11th, 2019 By Catherine Hanna

Hanna & Plaut is pleased and proud to report that our own Lauren Burgess has been named a Director-at-Large for the Texas Association of Defense Counsel. TADC is a professional organization of civil trial attorneys dedicated to promoting excellence in its members, fairness in our judicial system, and preserving the right to jury trial for all citizens. In order to become a member of the Texas Association of Defense Counsel, an attorney must be in good standing with the State
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Hanna & Plaut Partners Selected Once Again to the Texas Super Lawyers List

September 12th, 2019 By Catherine Hanna

Congratulations to Hanna & Plaut partners David Plaut and Catherine Hanna on their selection to the 2019 Texas Super Lawyers list. Each year, no more than five percent of the lawyers in the state are selected to receive this honor. Catherine and David are especially proud of this achievement since it is based on a process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. While achieving this level of
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Brainard Rule Under Attack in Texas House of Representatives

April 28th, 2019 By Sheila Tan

Uninsured and underinsured (“UM/UIM”) motorist insurance coverage continues to be a hotly debated topic, as attorneys representing insureds seek ways to recover attorneys’ fees in this hybrid cause of action. As we recently reported, the Texas Supreme Court recently turned back one attempt when it denied review in the case of Weber v. Progressive. Currently, the long-established Brainard rule is under legislative “attack” from H.B. 1739. H.B. 1739 seeks to do what Weber could not: eliminate the requirement that she
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Texas Supreme Court Rejects Attempt to Overturn Brainard

March 31st, 2019 By Catherine Hanna

On Friday, March 29, 2019, the Texas Supreme Court denied review in Case No. 18-0231, Weber v. Progressive.  Hanna & Plaut’s Jeff Glass and David Plaut represented Progressive in this UM/UIM case that sought to overturn the Texas Supreme Court’s Brainard and Henson decisions. Weber argued that she “complied with all conditions precedent” to sue for breach of contract on her personal auto policy with Progressive when she obtained consent to settle with the underlying tortfeasor after exhaustion of the
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