With its November 22, 2013 orders, the Texas Supreme Court chose seven cases for oral argument in January 2014.
Allen Chadwick Burbage v. W. Kirk Burbage and Burbage Funeral Home, No. 12-0563
– Cross-petitions in a defamation case. One side asks whether the damages here are supported by sufficient evidence and what is required to preserve error under Casteel. The other asks whether a permanent injunction against defamatory speech would also have been permissible.
Tenaska Energy, Inc., Tenaska Energy Holdings... v. Ponderosa Pine Energy, LLC, No. 12-0789
– What is the standard for challenging an arbitration award on the basis that the arbitrator was not impartial?
Venture Cotton Cooperative and Noble Americas Corp. v. Shelby Alan Freeman, et al., No. 13-0122
– When does a provision in a set of arbitration rules make a commercial arbitration agreement unconscionable?
Oil and gas (and other subsurface fluids)
Environmental Processing Systems, L.C. v. FPL Farming Ltd., No. 12-0905
– Should Texas recognize a common-law cause of action for trespass involving fluids far beneath the surface?
Mehrdad Moayedi v. Interstate 35/Chisam Road, L.P. and Malachi Development Corporation, No. 12-0937
– Whether the Texas statute designed to prevent lenders from obtaining a windfall recovery after below-market foreclosure sales can be waived, and if so, how specific must the borrower’s waiver be.
Maritime jurisdiction and the Dram Shop Act
Schlumberger Technology Corporation v. Christopher Arthey and Denise Arthey, No. 12-1013
– Whether maritime jurisdiction (and, thus, duties under maritime law) apply to a drunk-driving accident after a fishing event organized by the defendant.
Lubbock County Water Control and Improvement District and Tommy Fisher, in his official capacity as President of the Board of Directors of the Lubbock County Water Control and Improvement District v. Church & Akin, L.L.C., No. 12-1039
– The petition asks about the scope of the waiver by local governments for entering into a lease that (it is alleged) did not involve the provision of goods or services.