Tort Referm Continues in Texas


After two relatively quiet legislative sessions in 2007 and 2009, the Texas Legislature re-entered the tort reform arena in 2011 with a highly publicized form of "loser pays" legislation designed to shift the cost of civil litigation to parties who refuse reasonable settlement offers.

Originally enacted in 2003, the Texas "loser pays" statute set limits on the amount of fees and expenses recoverable. The 2011 legislation raises those limits to equal but not exceed the amount of the judgment. This means a defendant's recoverable costs of defense potentially could offset the full amount of the plaintiff's judgment, leaving the plaintiff with no net recovery.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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